Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections

illumination from Gordan MS 51

Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

Gordan MS 9 Mt. Athos [?], s. XII

Psalter (in Greek)

ff. 1r-57v [Title:] [phalteirion te pinon eis theon melos]

Inc.: [makarios aneir os ouk eporeuthei en boulei asebon. . .]

Expl.: [ego de spasamenos tein par' autou maxairan apekephalisa auton kai eira oneidos ex uion israeil] ff. 27v, 52v-r, 56v, 57v ruled but blank.

Psalms 1-151. Text for the Psalms: A. Rahlfs, ed., Septuaginta, ed. 7, v. 2 (Stuttgart, 1935) 1-164 The numbering for these psalms ends with Psalm 150 on f. 56r; "Psalm 151" is included, but unnumbered.

2. ff. 58r-65v [wdei mouseos en th exodo

Inc.: [aisomen to kurio endoxos gar dedoxastai ippon kai anabatein erriphen eis thalassan. . .]

Expl.: [epiphanai tois en skotei kai skia thanatou katheimenois. tou kateuthunai tous phodas eimon eis odon eireineis.]

f. 59r ruled but blank.

Text for the Odes corresponds to the "Novem Odae ecclesiae graecae" in Rahlfs, pp. 164-78, except that the eighth and ninth odes are each divided into two parts.

Parchment (brittle and yellowed), ff. iv (contemporary paper, i=front pastedown) + 65 + i (paper) + iv (contemporary paper, iv=back pastedown), 192 x 145 (144 x 96) mm., written in 32 ruled lines with double vertical and horizontal bounding lines in hardpoint, each outer margin contains a third bounding line about halfway between the double lines and the outer edge of the page. No visible signs of pricking.

I-III8, IV2 (+ f. 27), V-VII8, VIII-IX6, X2. Signatures marked in Greek notation in lower right margin recto.

Written by a single scribe in a neat and very clear, but tiny Greek minuscule that hangs from the top line.

The first Psalm and Psalm 77 on f. 28r begin with 4-line red penwork initials, the first badly rubbed. The remaining psalms and odes begin with plain 2-line red initials with modest penwork decoration. Titles in red. Psalms numbered in outer margin in red, as are Cathismata (kaqa), and Staseis (doxa). The many blank pages, in conjunction with the several other pages in which the top third or half of the page is left empty (e. g., ff. 1r, 28r, 57r, 58r, 59v, etc.) suggest that perhaps illustrations were intended for this Psalter.

Binding: Graeco-Venetian 17th Century, dark brown leather over boards, blind-stamped with ornamental borders and corner pieces; a crucifixion scene is stamped in the center of the front cover, Madonna on the crescent moon on the back. Remains of two leather clasps on back with small plain brass strip fasteners, remains of one brass fastener on front. Rebacked; Gordan MS number taped to spine.

Probably written in one of the Mt. Athos monasteries in the 12th century. Written inside front cover in several hands in lead: "tan", "375", 320", "1/2 M" and "Coll. complete J. Martini". In the collection of Giuseppe (Joseph) Martini of Lugano. Obtained (from Kraus?) by Howard L. Goodhart (census no. in lead), and given by him to Phyllis Goodhart Gordan (bookplate) and John Dozier Gordan, Jr.

secundo folio: [[pro]seuxeis mou.]

Bibliography: De Ricci, p. 1677, no. 9; V. N. Beneshevich, Catalogus codicum manuscriptorum Graecorum qui in monasterio Sanctae Catharinae in Monte Sina asservantur, Vol. I (St.-Petersburg, 1911; repr. Hildesheim, 1965), 648; A. Rahlfs, Verzeichnis der griechischen Handschriften des Alten Testaments, für das Septuaginta-Unternehmen aufgestellt (Berlin, 1914) [= Mitteilungen des Septuaginta-Unternehmens der Königlichen Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen, 2], 2; G. Parpulov, Toward a History of Byzantine Psalters, Ph.D. dissertation, U. of Chicago, 2004, 133ff.

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Last Update: May 1, 2006