Much is yet unknown on the history of these pages. One thing is sure. They where bought in a small shop in Madrid many years ago.

The Gradual page.

The text and the music on the gradual page is almost identical with 14th century Dominican sources. There is one exception, the text for the Alleluia is changed. The original text is identical to the 14th century Dominican sources. It was intended for the 19th Sunday after Pentecost. The revised text brings the page in line with the text revision done at the council of Trent. The music of the Alleluia part is not changed, it is still the original music.

Based on this there are two possible histories for this page.

Revision theory

In this theory the document is created before the Council of Trent (mid 16th century) in a Dominican order. After the council of Trent the text had to be adopted to reflect the new directions. This lead to the adaptation of the text implemented somewhere late 16th century.

Recycling theory

In this theory the document is created in a Dominican order, not nessesarily before the Council of Trent. At some point in time the Gradual was sold, given or transferred to an other order, maybe a Franciscan order. This other order followed strictly the Roman order and therefore had to adopt or "recycle" the Gradual. This resulted in many adaptations including a renumbering of the remaining pages of the Gradual.

Making a choice between the two theories is difficult. Based on the change of the numbering there is some reason to choose for the Recycling theory. The disadvantage of the Recycling theory is that all reference to historical events is lost which makes it more difficult to date the document.

Other aspects

The 5-line staves give reason to believe in a Spanish origin. The illumination style is more Italian. Because there where many Italians working in Spain it could be that the Spanish orders also used the more Italian styles. There are some examples in the Digital Scriptorum database that underpin this conclusion but the level of detail of the flourishing is high for Spanish standards.

The Antiphonal page.

The content of the Antiphonal page is almost equal to two 14th century Dominican sources. Based on this the page could have been created in an Dominican order.

There are however some characteristic differences in the music. Examples are the choice of the Psalms and the small melodic differences. It still has to be determined if these differences have any meaning and it is too early to draw any conclusion.

The illumination with small faces show German influences. The flourishing of the capitals is rather primitive. The illumination of the descenders at the bottom of the page echo's the illumination style of French documents.

Last update : 11 jan 2001