Real discoveries of treasures are exceptionally rare. The Macclesfield Psalter (c. 1335), a jewel of manuscript painting, was unknown before its sale by Sothebys in 2004; it came to international attention and is now recognized as the most important discovery in Britain of a medieval manuscript in living memory. Its pages offer an intimate view of the medieval world and the beliefs, prejudices, follies, aspirations and sentiments of its people. Doctors, priests, minstrels, mummers, farmers, dancers, tricksters and beggars mingle in the margins as they would have done on the streets of a busy town. Here, Stella Panayotova shares her intimate knowledge of the psalter and its historical context in an extended commentary, which unfolds an engrossing quest for the provenance of the manuscript and a beguiling account of its contents and meaning. Sumptuously presented in a cloth-covered slipcase, this edition is a delight to the eye and a challenge to the intellect.
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