Remember all the way back in January – the first #MedievalMonday post – when we met Z10 76 (Constantinus Africanus’ Viaticum), and that I mentioned it was the oldest thing in our collection until a few weeks ago? Well, this week, we will meet the oldest thing in our collection. It’s a binding.
Part of the music on this binding is an antiphon and was sung after the Gospel was read. It is listed in the Missale Ambrosianum as being used for the feast days of Saints Vitalis and Valerie (both of Milan) on April 28. The Missale Ambrosianum is the missal used in the Ambrosian Ritual, named for St. Ambrose (4th century A.D.), a bishop of Milan. The earliest manuscript evidence of the Ambrosian Ritual is from the 8th-century “Ratio de Cursus qui fuerunt ex auctores” in the British Library’s Cotton MS Nero A. II.
Scholar Michelle P. Brown tentatively identified this manuscript as 10th or 11th century English or Italian during her brief visit in November 2016, based on the script. After further research about the saints for whom the antiphon was sung, I am fairly confident that the manuscript is Italian: Saints Vitalis and Valerie are of Milan, and the Ambrosian ritual is practiced only in Milan and the surrounding area.
The book: Publicius, Jaime. Regimen sanitatis salernitanum nec non magistri Arnoldi de noui Villa. Venundantur Parrhisiis: In vico sancti Jacobi ab Alexandro Aliatte e regione diui benedicti, [after 1500]. Na 50.
Lacoste, Debra (Project Manager and Principal Researcher) and Koláček, Jan (Web Developer). Cantus: A Database for Latin Ecclesiastical Chant — Inventories of Chant Sources.
Missale Ambrosianum. Mediolani, de Sirturis: 1669.
Monti, James. A Sense of the Sacred: Roman Catholic Worship In the Middle Ages. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2012.
Tillerson, Dianne. Medieval Writing: History, heritage, and data source. 20 February 2016.
Wikipedia contributors. “Ambrosian Rite.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Accessed 28 September 2017.
—–. “Valeria of Milan.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Accessed 28 September 2017.
—–. “Vitalis of Milan.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Accessed 28 September 2017.