The Great War: Here and Over There, 1914-1918: A Digital Exhibition

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This digital exhibition is based on a physical exhibition in the Special Collections Gallery on display between October 10 and December 07, 2014, marking the beginning of what was referred to by contemporaries as “The Great War.” This coming November 11 marks the anniversary of the end of WWI, one hundred years ago.

The digital exhibition was created by Jon Bingham with help from Scott Beadles. We take this opportunity to say goodbye to Jon, who is moving on to greener pastures under the wild blue yonder, and wish him our very best in his new adventures. Thank you, Jon, for your great work in Rare Books.

Book of the Week — The Peril of the Times Displayed, or, The Danger of Mens taking up with a Form of Godliness…

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The Peril of the Times Displayed, or, The Danger of Mens taking up with a Form of Godliness, But Denying the Power of it…
Samuel Willard (1640-1707) and Increase Mather (1639-1723)
Boston: Printed by B. Green & J. Allen. Sold by Benjamin Eliot, 1700
First and sole edition

Born in Concord, Massachusetts, Samuel Willard was the sixth child of the town’s founder, Simon Willard, and his wife, Mary. The Willards were part of what is called the “Great Migration” of English Puritans to the Massachusetts Bay Colony. After first residing in Newtowne, (later Cambridge), the family moved in 1635 to the frontier to settle Concord with the Reverend Peter Bulkeley (1583-1659). Simon Willard died in 1676, serving as a major in King Phillip’s War. As a young minister in the New England backwoods Samuel Willard contended with a notorious case of demonic possession and the destruction of the town of Groton, Massachusetts during King Philip’s War. In 1671, sixteen year-old Elizabeth Knapp, who had been bound out as a servant in Willard’s household, began having seizures. Willard described her fits: “she was scarce to be held in bounds by three or four” and “sudden shriekings…roarings and screamings.”

In 1676 Groton was attacked by 400 natives who burned the town to the ground. Willard moved to Boston. During the next three decades, as pastor of Boston’s wealthy Third (Old South) Church, Willard confronted such threats to the Puritan social and spiritual order as declining church membership, the revocation of New England’s original charter, and the Salem witchcraft trials. Willard argued, regarding the infamous 1662 episode in Salem, that the court’s reliance on spectral evidence, the testimony of accusers who claimed to see the spirits of their attackers, contradicted scripture. Willard was, himself, accused of being a witch, although that charge was never taken seriously. When Judge Samuel Sewell later recanted his part in the execution of the condemned witches, he made his confession to Willard.

Willard published hundreds of sermons and other writings, responding to social, political, and doctrinal controversies by aligning theological rigor with social moderation, attempting to forge strategies by which orthodox Puritanism could accommodate the realities of a changing world. In this sermon, Samuel Willard addresses the decline in religious observance and piety in Puritan New England. This work was printed the same year that Willard was appointed vice-president of Harvard College. A letter by Increase Mather is included in the printing of this work, ironical, perhaps, since following the controversial dismissal of him as president of Harvard a year later, Willard assumed Mather’s duties, although not his official position.

Rare Books copy bound in contemporary American speckled sheep, ruled in blind, over thin wooden boards, called “scabbard.”

Book of the Week — Duineser Elegien

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Who would give ear, among the angelic host,
Were I to cry aloud? and even if one
Amongst them took me swiftly to his heart,
I should dissolve before his strength of being.
For beauty’s nothing but the birth of terror,
Which we endure but barely, and, enduring,
Must wonder at it, in that it disdains
To compass our destruction, every angel
Is terrible, and thus in self-control
I crush the appeal that rises with my sobs.

Duineser Elegien
Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926)
London: Printed for the Hogarth Press, 1931
First edition in English

From the translator’s note: “Something remains to be said of the actual content of the poem (for it is really a single poem in ten sections). This is admittedly exceedingly complex and arcane, and will not yield to a first, or even to a second reading. For Rilke’s poetry is of the metaphysical order and consists for the most part of an elaborate alchemy of hypostatised ideas, in the expression of which the invention of grammatical quips and subtleties plays…is an important part. His imagination seems naturally to have dealt in visions of embodied abstractions, and…he pushed the vision as far as possible, creating detailed landscapes and humanities of abstract categories…”


But tell me, who are these itinerants,
These fugitives more hasty than ourselves,
Urgently driven from the start, — by whom?
To gratify what discontented will?

From the colophon: “Count Harry Kessler planned the format of this volume. Eric Gill designed and himself cut on wood the initials. The Italic type was designed by Edward Johnston and cut by E. Prince and G. T. Friend. The paper was made by a hand process devised in joint research by Count Harry Kessler and Gaspard and Aristide Maillol. The book was printed in the winter and spring of 1931. Count Harry Kessler and Max Goertz supervised the work of setting the type and printing. Compositors: Walter Tanz and Hans Schulze. Pressman: Willi Laste.

The book was printed for the Hogarth Press, 52 Tavistock Square, London W. C. 1, and both the English and the German texts were reproduced by the courtesy of Insel-Verlag in Leipzig who are also the Agents for the book in Germany.

The whole edition consists of two hundred and thirty numbered copies for sale on handmade Maillol-Kessler paper with the watermark of the Cranach Press, and signed by the translators; and eight numbered copies on vellum for sale with hand-gilded initials, signed by the translators. This is copy Nr. 63.”

Book of the Week — Blitz: Letters from London September and October 1940

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“I will not try to describe the horrid sight of houses spilled across the streets instead of standing upright, of gunfire and screaming and whistling bombs, while we sit in the basement feeling it must be us next.”

Blitz: Letters from London September and October 1940
Evelyn Lister, Susan Allix
London, 2014

On September 7, 1940 the German Luftwaffe began bombing London and other British cities for over 50 consecutive nights.

From the artist’s statement: “As it will never be possible to have this same experience, designing the book seemed sometimes similar to creating an historical novel. Descriptions, film, artifacts and related reconstructions can help to provide brief windows and snapshots of the time…”

From the colophon: “The letters between Mildred, ‘Billie,’ and Evelyn, “Ana,’ are selected from a small collection that came to light when Billie died. They are accompanied here by later prints and photographs. Of the 5 photographs, 3 were taken in the early 1960s with a ‘box Brownie’ camera. The handwriting is reproduced from the original letters. The aquatints, printed in black and brown with hand colouring, are from drawings made at demolition sites and in the underground. The burning and smoking give different results on each copy. The letterpress is hand set and printed in 18pt. Grotesque 215 with 12pt. Grotesque Italic and 18pt. Granby Light Italic. The paper is Saunders Waterford.”

Bound in black goatskin and light brown textured handmade paper, with morocco, reversed leather, and metallic onlays. Issued in slate gray cloth clamshell slipcase. Edition of fifteen copies. Rare Books copy is no. 14, signed by the artist/bookmaker, Susan Allix.


“Earls Court tube is full of poor folk at night, with rugs and eats spread out on the platform; it’s an awful sight as you know how stuffy and dirty the deep undergrounds are, and all the people bring their little children with them.”


“You’ll have some idea of the state of the collapse and debris when I tell you that there are still 4 bodies that they can’t reach…”

Somewhere in the world, something similar is happening now.

Boards: A-Book-Part-You-Never-Think-About-But-Is-Super-Important-Anyway

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Judge a book by it’s cover all you want. That cover just keeps on doing what it does best: protecting the book’s text. Covers allows a book to continue to convey information by taking the wear and tear of everyday use. Through the years different materials have been used to cover books.



Coptic Binding
Uncatalogued

Wood. Early books were most commonly covered with wooden boards. Rare Books has several manuscripts with Coptic bindings. These books are well-used, with uncovered wooden boards that are polished by handling, but they are often broken and then repaired with linen thread. The wood is sometimes cut similarly to modern lumber, in a straight line across the log. In the picture below you can see the curve of the tree’s growth rings. Wood is porous and expands and contracts as it takes on or loses moisture from the air. It will expand unevenly around that natural curve, warping and sometimes even cracking the board. The strongest wood boards are cut in a very different way.

Imagine you are looking down on the round end of a log. If you cut this log radially from the center as if it was a pie, two useful things happen. First, boards cut like this (called a quarter cut) resist warping because the grain of the wood is running straight up your board, instead of curving through it. Looking at the boards from the top you see little to none of the curve of the tree’s rings. This board will warp very little as humidity changes. Second, there is a structural feature in wood called the medullary ray. These rays go through the wood from the core out to the bark. They are perpendicular to the main grain of the wood, forming a remarkably durable natural plywood. Many Coptic boards break because they are made with wood that does not have prominent medullary rays.

In the above image, notice the faint curve of the grain near the middle of the left board.

In the image below, we can see the medullary rays and the tree’s grain weaving together. The lighter lines are medullary rays, the darker lines are the tree’s grain creating a strong internal structure.


Handmade book
by Jonathan Sandberg from raw materials
at Jim Croft’s “Old Ways of Making Books” workshop



He kaine diatheke
Paris: [Antoine Augereau for] Simon de Colines, [29 November or 22 December] 1534
BS1965 1534

Pasteboard. All this picky woodwork added complications to the bookmaking process. When bookmakers discovered that they could just paste together paper proofs, misprints, or offcuts to make functional boards, it became common practice to do just that. This has made for interesting discoveries as modern conservators re-bind historical books and find that their boards are made of interesting or rare texts.



Deseret News
By Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Volume 6. March 1856-March 1866
Uncatalogued

Waterleaf. Around the mid-sixteenth century, very soon after pasteboard began to be used, another technique for making boards was developed. If you are familiar with historical papermaking, or you’ve seen our recent paper exhibition, Paper is Fundamental, you know that paper was made by drawing suspended fibers out of a vat of water on a screen, which was then rolled onto a stack of felts. Paper makers found that if they took these raw, wet pieces of paper and compressed them together, it formed a variant of pasteboard that was less likely to separate between pages, or delaminate. Pictured here is a bound volume of the Deseret News from 1856. The very worn board is beginning to delaminate which gives us a great view of individual “pages.” Because the board is never printed on directly and almost always covered, papermakers could include fiber that would normally be unacceptable for papermaking. Here you see small pieces of cloth and thread. Historical bookmaker Jim Croft calls this kind of board “barf board” because of the jumble of reject fibers that go into its production.



The Peril of the Times Displayed
Samuel Willard
Boston : Printed by B Green & J Allen sold by Benjamin Eliot 1700
BX7233 W4292 P47 1700

Scaleboard. The first paper mill in Colonial America wasn’t established until 1690. Rather than using expensive, imported book boards, bookbinders often used thin scales of wood in their place. These scaleboards, originally called scabbards, were much too brittle for the task of protecting a book, but when covered in paper or leather they made perfectly usable covers. This book was printed in Boston in the year 1700. The leather is now peeling away, allowing us to look at the wood scale beneath. The end grain of the board is visible at the fore-edge and spine of the book, instead of the traditional head and tail. It may be quarter-cut, the end grain shows only a slight curve. The board is a little warped, but the book has been through a lot, and scaleboard wasn’t expected to do the same heavy structural work as early wooden book boards were.

~Contributed by Jonathan Sandberg, Rare Books Assistant, with photographs by Scott Beadles, Rare Books Specialist

Medieval Latin Hymn Fragment: “Her mother ordered the dancing girl…”

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Puell(a)e saltanti im-
peravit mater nihil
allud petas nisl caput
loa(n)nes PS. Beatus vir (qui timet Dominum)
Arguebat ero-
dem Ioannes prop-

Her mother ordered the dancing girl
that you (she) seek nothing other than
the head of John Psalm. Blessed is the man (who fears the Lord)
John kept censuring Herod


(prop)ter Herodia(m) de qua(m)
tulerat fratri suo
Philippo uxorem Ps.
L(auda)te pu(eri Dominum)…Da mihi in
disco caput Ioannes
Baptist(a)e et contristas(tus est rex)…

because of Herodias the wife
of his brother Philip whom he had married.
Psalm. You servants, Praise the Lord…Give me on a dish
the head of John the Baptist; and the king was saddened…

The hymns of this fragment relate the story of the Beheading of Saint John the Baptist and are sung at vespers and lauds on August 29th. The story in its entirety is told in the Gospel of Saint Mark (6, 14-29). In these two passages Mark focuses on the machinations of Herodias, Herod’s wife, with her daughter Salome and king Herod’s contrition after the fact. The passage also mentions the reason why Herodias was so angry with John, the fact that John was censuring Herod for marrying his brother Phillip’s wife. Note that Herod’s infamous step-daughter Salome is not named in Mark’s narrative. The Jewish historian Flavius Josephus, however, does name her as Salome. He also states that the real reason that Herod killed John was “lest the great influence John had over the people might put it into his head to raise a rebellion” (Antiquities of the Jews) One of John’s frequent epithets is prodromos, translated as “the forerunner,” and some see him as a forerunner of Christ put to death at the hands of Pontius Pilate. Others see in the story the conflict between earthly power (Herod), revenge (Herodias), carnality (Salome) with spirituality and asceticism (John the Baptist). On August 29, 2012, Pope Benedict XVI mentioned the dedication of a crypt in Samaria where the head of Saint John the Baptist had been commemorated for centuries. He also mentioned the transfer of the relic to the Basilica of San Silvestro in Capite in Rome.

~Transcription, translation, and commentary by James T. Svendsen, associate professor emeritus, World Languages and Cultures, The University of Utah

MS chant frag. 7 — Parchment leaf from an Antiphonal, 16th c Italy/S. France.

~Description by Elizabeth Peterson, associate professor, Dept. of Art & Art History, The University of Utah, from Paging Through Medieval Lives, a catalog for an exhibition held November 2, 1997 through January 4, 1998 at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.

Books of the Week — La Méthode de nomenclature chimique & Essai de Statique chimique

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In the study of nature, as in the practice of art, it is not given to man to achieve the goal without leaving a trail of dead ends he had pursued. — Louis Bernard Guyton de Morveau

La Méthode de nomenclature chimique
Louis Bernard Guyton de Morveau (1737-1816)
Paris: Cuchet, 1787
First edition, first issue
QD7 G85

Antoine Lavoisier’s discoveries made a new and rational chemical nomenclature imperative. Initiated by Louis Bernard Guyton de Morveau, the project was taken up by Lavoisier, who soon convinced Guyton of the sense of his new system. The two collaborated with Claude-Louis Berthollet (1748-1822) and Antoine de Fourcroy (1755-1809), all of whom put together Méthode de nomenclature, replacing traditional alchemical language with a new system, still the basis of the language of modern chemistry. The system was quickly accepted after initial mass resistance.


A chemical name should not be a phrase…it should recall the constituents of a compound; it should be non-committal if nothing is known about the substance; the names should preferably be coined from Latin or Greek, so that their meaning can be more widely and easily understood; the form of the words should be such that they fit easily into the language into which they are to be incorporated. — from La Méthode de nomenclature chimique


Essai de statique chimique
Claude-Louis Berthollet (1748-1822)
Paris: F. Didot, 1803
First edition

Trained as a physician, the French chemist Claude-Louis Berthollet attempted to provide a basis for chemistry so that its experimental results could be viewed in the light of theoretical first principles. In this attempt, Berthollet recognized the importance of the theory of affinity.

According to the Essai, there were two main types of force in nature: gravitation, which accounted for astronomical phenomena, and chemical affinity. Berthollet proved that chemical affinity was relative, varying with the physical conditions accompanying a chemical experiment: quantity, temperature, solubility, pressure, and physical state. Berthollet introduced the concept of ‘chemical mass’ — relative affinity combined with the mass of reactants in a chemical combination — to give the total force with which a given quantity of a substance reacted with another.

In his work, Berthollet was critical of some of Lavoisier’s theories. His experiments with acidity, for example, were more substantial than those of Lavoiser. Nonetheless, Berthollet’s theories were never particularly successful in the eyes of his contemporaries.

Still, Berthollet worked closely with some of the best scientific minds of the time: Mathematician Pierre-Simon Laplace (1749-1827) contributed two extensive footnotes to Essai. He and Berthollet eventually lived next door to each other, forming the Arcueil Society, along with geographer and explorer Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859), about whom Berthollet said, “This man is as knowledgeable as a whole academy.”

 

Book of the week — Of the Small Silver-Coloured Book-Worm

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This Animal probably feeds upon the Paper and covers of Books, and perforates in them several small round holes, finding, perhaps, a convenient nourishment in those hulks of Hemp and Flax, which have pass’d through so many scourings, washings, dressings and dryings, as the parts of old Paper must necessarily have suffer’d; the digestive faculty, it seems, of these little creatures being able yet further to work upon those stubborn parts, and reduce them into another form. — Robert Hooke

Of the Small Silver-Coloured Book-Worm
Robert Hooke (1635-1703)
Northampton, MA: Catawba Press, 1980
Z701 H66 1980

From Robert Hooke’s “Observation LII” from Micrographia… London, Printed by John Martyn and James Allestry, 1665. Illustrated with a wood engraving by Abigail Rorer. Handsewn binding covered with marbled paper wrappers by Don Guyot. Edition of one hundred and seventy-five copies. Rare Books copy is no. 155.

Welcome back, scholars!

On Jon’s Desk: Celebrating National Aviation Day with a Look at the Evolution of Flight

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Evolution of Flight - cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Some of the myths of yesterday are the facts of today. The advance and evolution of flight is fully appreciated by the world at large. The long process of its growth can be vividly traced by reading the early legends and following them through the various stages of development. The early investigators, the daring balloonists, the ingenious gliders – all have contributed to this wonderful achievement.”

~ Nolie Mumey, from the Foreword of Evolution of Flight

Evolution of Flight - title page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Evolution of Flight: Stories based on legendary and historical data

Nolie Mumey

Denver: The Kendrick Bellamy Co., 1931

TL515 M8 1931

Evolution of Flight - GreeceIt is easy to take for granted how far we’ve come in the field of aviation. Given the money and the appropriate political documentation, anyone can get to the other side of the world within a twenty-four-hour period of time. This fact is really quite mind boggling when one takes a moment to ponder it. I recently took a trip which involved flying in an airplane. While preparing for the upcoming flight I was more concerned with making sure I didn’t have any liquids in my carry-on bag when I got to the security check point than I was about the fact that I was about to sit inside a large piece of metal as it flew through the air at hundreds of miles per hour thirty thousand feet above the ground. I doubt I am alone in this warped sense of concern when it comes to travel via commercial airline. Flying has become so common place it is interesting to consider that we have only had the technology to travel in this way for a little over a century. For thousands of years before we finally succeeded in achieving sustained flight people had dreamed of doing so.

Evolution of Flight - EnglandEach year, on August 19th, the United States of America celebrates National Aviation Day. Created by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939, the day is a commemoration of the development of modern aviation. The 19th of August was selected for its observance because Orville Wright was born on this day in 1871. Orville and his older brother Wilbur are credited with achieving the first controlled, sustained flight of a powered, heavier-than-air aircraft. At 10:35 a.m. on December 17, 1903, four miles south of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, Orville lifted off into a 27 mile per hour head wind and flew for 12 seconds at an altitude of 10 feet, flying at 6.8 miles per hour and covering 120 feet of ground. Both brothers flew twice that day, Wilbur making the fourth and final flight of the day at about noon, during which he sustained flight for 59 seconds and flew 852 feet.

Evolution of Flight - Wright BrothersAfter experimenting with gliders in the 1890s (based upon research done by Leonardo da Vinci, Octave Chanute, George Cayley, Otto Lilienthal, Samuel Langley, and others), the Wright brothers constructed their powered Wright Flyer I using spruce wood and Pride of the West muslin. They designed and carved their own propellers and, when they couldn’t find anyone able to build an engine to their weight specifications, turned to their shop machinist and mechanic Charlie Taylor – who in only six weeks engineered and built a lightweight power plant for the Wright brothers. To minimize weight, Taylor cast the engine block from aluminum. The 152-pound engine exceeded the power output requirement of 8 horsepower by delivering 12. Using heavy duty chains that resembled those used for bicycles, the engine drove the dual eight feet long propellers. The Flyer had a wingspan of 40.3 feet and weighed 605 pounds.

Evolution of Flight - Jean-Marie Le BrisTo put Taylor’s engine into perspective, the self-propelled lawn mowers most of us have in our sheds today average between 5 and 7 horsepower and those of the riding variant average between 15 and 20. Building a frame of spruce wood, covering it with muslin, and placing on it the equivalent of a lawn mower engine hooked via chains to a couple of propellers seems fairly straight forward and something an engineering-minded and mechanically-inclined high school student might do during a summer break to pass the time. We, who are accustomed to seeing pictures of the SR-71, Concorde, and F-35 Lightning II, may easily take the Wrights’ achievement for granted, thinking of it as primitive. To think such, however, would show a lack of understanding for what was achieved in 1903. While Taylor’s six-week turnaround in designing and building a lightweight engine is impressive, the true accomplishment that brought the Wright brothers their fame was the development of three-axis control because it was this system that enabled a pilot Evolution of Flight - W Millerto steer the aircraft effectively and to maintain its equilibrium. It was what had eluded all other aeronautical investigators up until the turn of the 20th century.

Although on National Aviation Day we celebrate the accomplishments of the Wright brothers, we should remember that there were many people who contributed to the pursuit of flight over a span of roughly two thousand years. Written by *Nolie Mumey, Evolution of Flight: Stories based on legendary and historical data takes the reader, as the title makes clear, through the history of thousands of years in which we developed the ability to fly thousands of miles in a few hours. Granted, most of the significant progress was made in the last two centuries prior to powered flight – but we shouldn’t discount even the earliest efforts because it shows the power of dreams and where those dreams can take us.

~ Contributed by Jon Bingham, Rare Books Curator

*Nolie Mumey (1891 – 1984) graduated from the University of Arkansas Medical School in 1916 and became a surgeon. He went on to earn a Master of Science degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a BA and MA from the University of Denver. A twentieth-century Renaissance man, Mumey was also a poet, silversmith, aviator, carpenter, woodcarver, artist, and inventor. He had an extensive collection of books and artifacts of the American West and its history. He wrote numerous books on both medical and Western history.

Evolution of Flight - Leonardo da Vinci

 

 

 

 

 

Evolution of Flight - Lilienthal

 

 

 

 

Evolution of Flight - Octave Chanute

 

Medieval Latin Hymn Fragment: “Who is this who comes forth arising like morning…”

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(Guttur tuum sicut vinum optimum)
Dignu(m) dilecto meo ad pota(n)dum
Q(ua)e est ista q(uae) progreditur
q(ua)si aurora consurge(n)s
pulchra ut luna e-(lecta)

(and your mouth like an exquisite wine)
worthy for drinking (may it go) to my beloved…
Who is this who comes forth rising like
morning, beautiful like the moon,


lecta ut sol terribilis ut castroru(m) acies
ordinata Cantan Ps(almum)
Et ideo amavit eam(,m) rex plusq(ua)m (omnes mulieres)

resplendent
like the sun, terrible like an army arrayed for battle?
And therefore he loved her more than (all the other women)

This folio, like several others in the collection, is devoted to the celebration of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary on August 15th. It was the antiphon sung at the Benedictus for lauds early in the morning and urged the faithful to rejoice: “gaudete et exultate…qui hodie Maria Virgo cum Christo regnat per eternum. Alleluja” (“Rejoice and exult…because today the Virgin Mary reigns with Christ in heaven forever. Alleluia!”) The first selection on the recto is from the Song of Songs, a series of love poems in which lover and beloved, bridegroom and bride, are united, divided and united again. Often the series is interpreted allegorically: the relationship signifies a true human relationship sanctified by marriage or it signifies the relationship between Yahweh and Israel. In the text the bridegroom introduces the metaphor of wine, and the bride responds with similarly: “your speaking, superlative wine/wine flowing straight to my Beloved” (Jerusalem Bible). The text continues with the Bridegroom’s question: “Why is this arising like the dawn, fair as the moon, resplendent as the sun, terrible as an army with banners?” (Jerusalem Bible). Here more specifically the relationship seems to be the relationship between God and the Blessed Virgin Mary with God questioning who she is as she is assumed into heaven. Note that the simile “quasi aurora consugens” is highly appropriate, and some other later texts emend “progreditur” to “ascendit” to heighten the upward momentum for the “rising” Mary. Thus the bride of the allegory is not only Israel, the Church or individual soul but also the Blessed Virgin Mary as queen of heaven and arrayed for the battle against evil, perhaps even as the woman of the Apocalypse. This is the reason Holy Scripture refers to Our Lady as “terribilis ut castrorum acies ordinata,” as terrible as an army set in battle array.” The Church also says that it is she alone who smashes all heresies. To celebrate this fact, in statues of the Immaculate Conception, Our Lady is crushing the head of the evil serpent.

At the bottom of the verso the text alludes to the Blessed Virgin Mary in the context of the Old Testament and the Book of Esther: “And the king loved Esther more than all the women, and she found favor and kindness with him more than all the women, and she found favor and kindness with him more than all the virgins, so that he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti” (Esth.2:17). In a figural reading the king’s love for Esther is a type prefiguring God’s love for Mary above all others. It also prefigures her immaculate conception as virgin and establishes her place as queen of heaven, a fitting allusion on the Feast of the Assumption.

~Transcription, translation, and commentary by James T. Svendsen, associate professor emeritus, World Languages and Cultures, The University of Utah

MS chant frag. 4 — Part of a parchment bifolia from an Antiphonal, 16th c. Spain/Portugal.

~Description by Elizabeth Peterson, associate professor, Dept. of Art & Art History, The University of Utah, from Paging Through Medieval Lives, a catalog for an exhibition held November 2, 1997 through January 4, 1998 at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.