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Volume / Number: 11 / 1628b

CLA 1628b
  • San Lorenzo Spain El Escorial Camarin De Las Reliquias without number
  • San Lorenzo Spain El Escorial Camarin De Las Reliquias without number
Script Cursive
Date VII (601 - 700)
Origin and Provenance

Written apparently in Spain, as certain palaeographical features suggest; yet its origin has been much disputed by experts in the field, some favouring Italy, others Spain. If the origin here accepted be correct, the script of the Benedictio cerei constitutes the oldest known specimen of Spanish cursive, dating a century or so before the Arab invasion which doubtless would account for the similarity of the Spanish and Italian cursive types of that period. For later history see next item.

CLA Vol. 11
TM Number TM 67794
Support Parchment
Contents Benedictio Cerei Paschalis.
Script Commentary

Script: the first impression is Italian, specifically North Italian; yet the two most typical forms in this cursive are absent, namely, the ligatures of ss and st. Further analysis shows features that seem Visigothic: the curious li ligature (e.g., see fol. 4v, l. 8, 'filium'; also fol. 3v, l. 15, 'confidens', and fol. 4, l. 16, 'opifices', etc.) and the peculiar Visigothic elongation of c and s in order to form the next letter without removing the pen (e.g. fol. 3v, l. 3, ‘sollemniter' and fol. 4, l.8, 'condidisti', et passim). Noteworthy is theta-like e, which also occurs in the expert cursive written over the fifth-century Licinianus (CLA 2.166) and in the poorly written Greco-Latin glossary, Louvre Pap. Eg. 2329 (CLA 5.696). Superior a and u are frequent. To be compared with the North Italian Trevano charter of 9 April 748, in the Archivio di Stato in Milan, with which it has several features in common. A later Merovingian hand supplied the 'fa' and 'nunt' in the lower left margin of fol. 4. The lower half of fol. 4v contains various probationes pennae in Anglo-Saxon majuscule and minuscule of the eighth century, namely alphabets, the phrase 'omnium inimicorum suorum dominabitur' found often in Würzburg manuscripts—see CLA 1.90 and 9.1407, 1424, and 1430a—and the ABC-verse 'ferunt obit cum...'; also the interesting entries: 'huum scripsit seruus dei' in Anglo-Saxon minuscule saec. VIII ex.; and the lines over erasure concerning the borrowing of Gregory's Moralia, parts 3–5, in Germanic cursive minuscule saec. VIII–IX; and the title of St Augustine’s work in a German hand saec. X, also seen at the end of the main volume.


☛Bischoff, Katalog 1 no. 1201a.

Last modified 25 July 2017