Saint Albans Psalter
The St. Albans Psalter (c. 1125-1135), is generally regarded as the earliest surviving masterpiece of Anglo-Norman painting. Its extensive picture cycle includes over 200 historiated initials accompanying the psalms and prayers. This book focuses on these initials, examining their relationship to the text, the sources upon which they draw, the design process, the messages encoded into them, and the ways they would have been read by a contemporary audience. Addressing these issues sheds new light on the development of Anglo-Norman art, the role of major Benedictine foundations in this process, and the ways these houses reached out not only to those within their communities, but also to the laity in a time of relative insecurity.
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The Thematic Program of the Initials
Tradition and Innovation
The Saint Albans Psalter and Its Contemporary
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Albans designer Albans initials Albans Psalter angels Anglo-Saxon Anselm arc of heaven Augustine Barbarini grec bearded figure beardless figure blessing Byzantine illumination Canart and Walter Canterbury canticle Carolingian Cassiodorus Christ appears Christina Chuldov close commentary composition crowned cycle David Davies and Evans Dewald Dodwell and Wormald Duffy Dufrenne Eadmer emphasis enemies faithful figure stands gesture glosses God's Goldschmidt 1895 Harley Havice Holy illus illustrated in Utrecht illustrates the caption Images illustrated initial fig initial for psalm involves king Lanfranc looks Lord mandorla manuscripts medieval mercy Miitherich monastic monks Mutherich 1968 Old Testament open book Opera Omnia Pacht petitioner Physiologus pictorial plea points pose praising prayer Proslogion psalm initials psalmist reading reference relationship scene Schmitt similar sinners soul Stuttgart illustrates Stuttgart Psalter thematic Themes not illustrated tion tonsured trans Universiteitsbibliotheek Utrecht Psalter verse is illustrated Verses not illustrated visual word