New in CCDL: Illuminated Renaissance Manuscript

The Ella Strong Denison Library and Honnold/Mudd Special Collections are pleased to announce a new collection in the Claremont Colleges Digital Library. This new collection, Gradual from Maundy Thursday to the Vigil of Pentecost, can be seen at

The collection currently consists of an entire illuminated Renaissance manuscript, officially named "Denison Library, Perkins 4. Gradual. s. XVI," which is a choir book that contains Latin text and plainsong music sung by cantors and choir at the Roman Catholic mass. The book was created in northern France, probably Rouen, in the early 16th century. Many pages contain decorated initials, and nine pages have large historiated initials enclosed by floral borders. Annotations include full liturgical information, translation of rubrics, musical and liturgical comparisons with the Liber Usualis (abbreviated LU), and descriptions of each page, including descriptions of illuminations. Future additions to the collection will include audio/visual recordings of the music being performed, musical transcriptions, and possibly downloadable PDF files of all or portions of the manuscript. Be sure to check back for updates.

We wish to give many thanks to Charles W. Kamm, Scripps College, who made the annotations, translations, comparisons, and descriptions; John Sullivan, Huntington Library, who digitized the manuscript; and the CCDL staff for all their support and cooperation.

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