Artist Unknown


  • Mixed media
  • William A. Sutton bequest, 2000
  • 679 x 576mm
  • 2000/02

Dating from the late-fifteenth century, this manuscript page carries verses from Psalm 79, painstakingly inscribed on vellum parchment, likely with a goose or swan feather quill pen. Its large size suggests it was used for recitation or singing in a dimly lit setting, and its modest decoration is restricted to the filigree initials. The Latin adheres to a late fourth-century translation.

(Out of Time, 23 September 2023 – 28 April 2024)

The text in this manuscript is Psalm 79, verses 5 to 12 from the Vulgate. The initial letter of each verse is coloured.

5 Domine Deus virtutum quousque irasceris super orationem servi tui 6 Cibabis nos pane lacrimarum et potum dabis nobis in lacrimis in mensura 7 Posuisti nos in contradictionem vicinis nostris et inimici nostri subsannaverunt nos 8 Deus virtutum converte nos et ostende faciem tuam et salvi erimus 9 Vineam de Aegypto transtulisti eiecisti gentes et plantasti eam 10 Dux itineris fuisti in conspectu eius et plantasti radices eius et implevit terram 11 Operuit montes umbra eius et arbusta eius cedros Dei 12 Extendit palmites suos usque ad mare et usque ad Flumen propagines eius

In the New International Version:

5 How long, O LORD? Will you be angry forever? How long will your jealousy burn like fire? 6 Pour out your wrath on the nations that do not acknowledge you, on the kingdoms that do not call on your name; 7 for they have devoured Jacob and destroyed his homeland. 8 Do not hold against us the sins of the fathers; may your mercy come quickly to meet us, for we are in desperate need. 9 Help us, O God our Savior, for the glory of your name; deliver us and forgive our sins for your name's sake. 10 Why should the nations say, "Where is their God?" Before our eyes, make known among the nations that you avenge the outpoured blood of your servants. 11 May the groans of the prisoners come before you; by the strength of your arm preserve those condemned to die. 12 Pay back into the laps of our neighbors seven times the reproach they have hurled at you, O Lord.

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