© Hildesheim, St Godehard |
OF ST MARTIN
Sulpicius Severus, Vita Martini
The Resurrection cycle is abruptly interrupted by the St Martin legend.
In the lower scene, St Martin, riding from the right, cuts his beige and
green cloak in half to share it with a naked beggar who carries a water
bottle and stands outside a city gate. In the upper scene, Martin lies
dreaming and a vision appears to him of Christ wearing the beige and green
cloak. Christ is enthroned in an aureole.
The scene, divided into two registers is illustrated in an 11th -century
manuscript from Tours (Tours, Bibliothèque Municipale, MS. 1018)
but no background is provided in the beggar scene, and in the vision scene
Christ stands behind the bed holding the cloak. In the 12th-century
Vita Martini from Trier (Stadtbibliothek. MS. 1378) the beggar stands
before the city gate, and Christ is in an aureole above. However, it was
the St Albans artist who illustrated the words of the text most accurately
by putting the mantle around Christ (‘Christus ea memorat se
bene veste tegi’) (AP, 95, pl 130). For a discussion
of this image within the Christ cycle, see Understanding
the Miniatures: St Martin.
There is a tiny i written at the top of the page (in the margin above
the left angel, p53). This could simply be
a normal type of quire mark or signify initium, the start. It
is notable that there are no other quire marks in the miniature sequence,
or the remainder of the book.
First page of quire 4
Thread or stitch holes for protective curtain