Part of a set. See all set records
Ink and tempera on vellum
Sheet: 44.8 x 32 cm (17 5/8 x 12 5/8 in.); Framed: 63.5 x 48.3 cm (25 x 19 in.); Matted: 55.9 x 40.6 cm (22 x 16 in.)
Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1954.598.a
This leaf was excised from a copy of the handbook of church law known as the Decretum written by Gratian, an Italian Camaldolese monk active in Bologna from about 1130 to 1140. The focus of the leaf is a large decorated letter Q with spiraling lotus petals introducing the first Causa, or case of law. The text begins, "A man having a son offered him to a very wealthy cloister." This case concerns the definition of simony (making profit from sacred things). The style of the illumination and the script date the leaf to between 1160 and 1165. In November 1164, Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, took refuge at Pontigny as a result of his conflict with King Henry II of England. During his stay, Becket immersed himself in the study of church law, as evidenced by his later use of citations from the Decretum. This leaf could have been part of the original manuscript Becket consulted. The volume was later dismembered following the suppression of the monastery during the French Revolution in the late 1700s.
The information about this object, including provenance information, is based on historic information and may not be currently accurate or complete. Research on objects is an ongoing process, but the information about this object may not reflect the most current information available to CMA. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.
Is something not working on this page? Please email email@example.com.
Request a digital file from Image Services that is not available through CC0, a detail image, or any image with a color bar. If you have questions about requesting an image, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.