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[Pedro IV of Aragon (1319-1387)] [Ordinacions de Pere III], in...

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[Pedro IV of Aragon (1319-1387)]
[Ordinacions de Pere III], in Catalan, decorated manuscript on paper and vellum [Spain, Aragon, probably between 1412 and 1416]
A Catalan manuscript, the first vernacular version of the Ordinances promulgated by Pedro ‘the Ceremonious’ and his successors for the regulation of the Aragonese royal court, including the royal household and the king’s advisers, scribes and officials. Reputedly made for the Gralla family, financial comptrollers of Catalonia, the manuscript is probably dateable to the reign of Fernando I of Aragon, and is signed by the scribe Salvius Calsada.

338 x 225mm. iii + 169 leaves + iii, on paper and vellum (innermost and outermost bifolia of most gatherings vellum, otherwise paper), apparently textually complete, collation: 19 (of 12, lacking i and xi-xii, probably blanks), 2-1016, 11-128, contemporary foliation (‘iii-clxxi’) followed here, watermark: crossed arrows in a circle, two columns, 38 lines, ruled space: 213 x 153mm, copied in two inks (ff.7v and 160-169 in a lighter brown), scribal signature on f.169, rubrics in red, some capitals touched in yellow, paraph marks alternately red and blue, initials alternately in red and blue with purple and red penwork flourishing throughout, large pen-flourished initials on ff.12, 26v, 39v, 51v, 56v, 86, 95v, 99v, 114v, 136, 138 and 156, (significant losses to margins of ff.1-9 and on further occasions throughout repaired with stiff paper, some marginal damp-staining). 18th-century Spanish gilt calf binding, edges gilt and gauffered, red morocco gilt spine label reading: ‘ORDENANZAS PALATINAS DE D. PEDRO IIII REY DE ARAGON’ (a little rubbed, corners bumped, tiny losses at edges and spine ends).

Provenance:
(1) The ordinances listed in the present manuscript date from no later than the reign of Fernando I of Aragon (1412-1416), which suggests it may have been copied in this period; apparently for:

(2) The Gralla family of Catalonia, maestres racionales [financial comptrollers] of Catalonia; according to a note at the base of the later title page on f.ii, until 1545, when the office was assumed by:

(3) The Marquesses of Aitona. The supplementary information pertaining to payments due to officials of the court on ff.160-169 of our manuscript would presumably have been useful for a maestre racional – one of the official roles regulated in the Ordinacions – with responsibility for accounts at the royal court.

(4) Frederick North (1766–1827), 5th Earl of Guilford, colonial governor and book collector, many of whose manuscripts are now in the British Library; according to Munby, Phillipps Studies III, p.161.

(5) Thomas Thorp (1791-1851), bookseller; his Catalogue of extensive and curious collection of Books in most languages and every department of literature […] selected from the United Libraries of the Earl of Rockingham, Lords North, Glenbervie, and the Earl of Guilford […], 1829, no 1029; and sold to:

(6) Sir Thomas Phillipps (1792-1872); his MS no 6737 (small printed label on spine).

(7) Sotheby’s, 25 November 1969, lot 464.

(8) Joan Gili, The Dolphin Book Company, Oxford, Catalan publisher and bookseller. Sold via Jeremy Griffiths in 1994 to:

(9) The Schøyen Collection, MS 2336.

Content:
Later title page in Spanish pasted onto f.ii; table of contents ff.1-7; blanks ff.8-9; Ordinacions fetes per lo molt alt senyor en Pere terç Rey Darago sobre lo regiment de tots los officials de la sua cort ff.12-85v [Ordinances of Pedro IV]; Ordinatio feta p[er] lo molt alt e molt excellent princep e senyor lo se[n]yor en Pere terç Rey Darago de la manera con los reys Darago se faran consagrar e ells mateix se coronaran ff.86-99 [ceremonial for the coronation of the kings and queens of Aragon]; Addicions e declaracions fetes e ordonades per diverses Reys Darago sobre les Ordinacions de tots los officials de la Cort. E primeramente les addicions fetes per lo damunt senyor Rey en Pere terç, ff.99v-135 [Additional ordinances, first for the officials of the court of Pedro IV]; followed by his successors, from 1387-1416: Juan I ff.136-137v, Martín I ff.138-153, Fernando I ff.154-154v; blank f.155; Tots les negocis deius scrits se acostumen exercir no per ordinacio mas per stil de la cort del Senyor Rey ff.156-159 [Customs of the Court, ‘not by ordinance’, from the time of Alfonso IV]; Levament fet per lo Senyor Rey Alfonso Quart dels Officials de Casa del dit Senyor […], ff.160-169 [payments made at the court of Alfonso IV], with a colophon in Latin added by the scribe Salvius Calsada on f.169: ‘Salvius vocatur qui scripsit benedicatur: Cognomen eius Calsada dicitur esse’.

Our manuscript constitutes an early 15th-century copy of the Ordinances of Pedro IV, King of Aragon, first promulgated in 1344. Written in Catalan, they represent the first vernacular version of the texts regulating the running of the royal household and the duties of all the king's advisers, scribes, and officials. The lengthy document – titled ‘Ordinances Made by His Highness Peter the Third of Aragon on the Governance of All the Officials of His Court’ – was an almost literal translation of the Latin Leges Palatinae issued by Jaime III of Mallorca and followed the reincorporation of Mallorca into the Crown of Aragon in 1343. The first translation made at the behest of Pedro IV was undertaken by his secretary Mateu Adrià and personally reviewed by the monarch: that manuscript – which bears his signed revisions – was used as an exemplar for further copies commissioned by the king and was for many years held in the Archives of the Crown of Aragon. It was transferred to Madrid by ‘Royal Order of 20 November 1797’ and subsequently disappeared from sight for over a century, when it was rediscovered at the University of Valencia (published by Gimeno, Gozalbo & Trenchs (eds.), Ordinacions de la Casa i Cort de Pere el Ceremoniós, 2009).

The text of the Ordinacions as it exists in the present manuscript also includes the ceremonial for the rite of the coronation of kings of Aragon appended by the monarch and his collaborators in 1353. Not for nothing has Pedro IV been immortalised with the epithet ‘the Ceremonious’, reflecting his desire to exalt the function of royalty and to consolidate a written memory of the monarchy through enshrining a complex matrix of ceremonies, rites, and symbols underlining the centrality of the king (see J. Aurell and M. Serrano-Coll, ‘The Self-Coronation of Peter the Ceremonious (1336): Historical, Liturgical, and Iconographical Representations’, Speculum, vol. 89, no 1, 2014, pp. 66–95). After the regulations issued by Pedro IV (reigned 1336-1387), our manuscript incorporates later additions promulgated by his successors Juan I (1387-1396), Martín I (1396-1410) and Fernando I (1412-1416): the reign of Fernando I, then, offers a terminus ante quem for our manuscript, as no subsequent regnal regulations are included. Instead, the ordinances are followed by a list of historical Customs of the Court (ff.156-159), ending with the ‘Stil de Cort antiquat’ derived from the practices of Alfonso IV of Aragon (1327-1336). The final section of the manuscript (ff.160-169) details the payments due to officials of the Court during the reign of Alfonso IV, mentioning musicians, falconers, minstrels, secretaries and scribes, among others; the final entry in this section details expenses connected with the conquest of Sardinia in 1326/7.

The Ordinacions themselves describe in minute detail the organisation of a medieval court: they begin with a description of the duties of the various Officers of the Court, according to department in the royal household, and list the responsibilities of persons from the butler, cooks and provisioners to the falconers, doctors, mace-bearers and keepers of the horses. The tasks of the various categories of scribes employed by the monarch are thoroughly described: some are employed to copy documents, some to take letters, some to keep account, and others to copy instructions to members of the Household. The text then provides detailed descriptions for the conduct of the business of the Court, from the storage of meat to the provision of lighting, including the forms of routine to be followed on specific saint or other feast days.

The Ordinacions fetes per lo molt alt senyor en Pere terç Rey Darago were recorded in 11 copies of the 14th and 15th centuries in a 1985 census (see Pere Bohigas, Sobre manuscrits i biblioteques). This survey, which does not appear to be a comprehensive account of all medieval manuscripts of the Ordinacions, does reflect the fact that copies seem only to exist in European libraries: seven at the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris (MsS esp. 8, 62, 63, 64, 98, 99 and 100; one of these, esp. 98, a copy of 1412 made by a named scribe, Joan Coll); two in Madrid, at the Royal Library of the Escorial (Est. 3 n. 3) and the Lázaro Galdiano Museum (R.14.425; apparently a 14th-century copy in Aragonese); and two in Barcelona, at the Arxiu Històric - Ajuntament Barcelona (MS. B-49 and MS. B-78). No copy in North America was recorded by de Ricci (S. De Ricci, Census, 1935-7) and none seems to be owned by any British institution.

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[Pedro IV of Aragon (1319-1387)]
[Ordinacions de Pere III], in Catalan, decorated manuscript on paper and vellum [Spain, Aragon, probably between 1412 and 1416]
A Catalan manuscript, the first vernacular version of the Ordinances promulgated by Pedro ‘the Ceremonious’ and his successors for the regulation of the Aragonese royal court, including the royal household and the king’s advisers, scribes and officials. Reputedly made for the Gralla family, financial comptrollers of Catalonia, the manuscript is probably dateable to the reign of Fernando I of Aragon, and is signed by the scribe Salvius Calsada.

338 x 225mm. iii + 169 leaves + iii, on paper and vellum (innermost and outermost bifolia of most gatherings vellum, otherwise paper), apparently textually complete, collation: 19 (of 12, lacking i and xi-xii, probably blanks), 2-1016, 11-128, contemporary foliation (‘iii-clxxi’) followed here, watermark: crossed arrows in a circle, two columns, 38 lines, ruled space: 213 x 153mm, copied in two inks (ff.7v and 160-169 in a lighter brown), scribal signature on f.169, rubrics in red, some capitals touched in yellow, paraph marks alternately red and blue, initials alternately in red and blue with purple and red penwork flourishing throughout, large pen-flourished initials on ff.12, 26v, 39v, 51v, 56v, 86, 95v, 99v, 114v, 136, 138 and 156, (significant losses to margins of ff.1-9 and on further occasions throughout repaired with stiff paper, some marginal damp-staining). 18th-century Spanish gilt calf binding, edges gilt and gauffered, red morocco gilt spine label reading: ‘ORDENANZAS PALATINAS DE D. PEDRO IIII REY DE ARAGON’ (a little rubbed, corners bumped, tiny losses at edges and spine ends).

Provenance:
(1) The ordinances listed in the present manuscript date from no later than the reign of Fernando I of Aragon (1412-1416), which suggests it may have been copied in this period; apparently for:

(2) The Gralla family of Catalonia, maestres racionales [financial comptrollers] of Catalonia; according to a note at the base of the later title page on f.ii, until 1545, when the office was assumed by:

(3) The Marquesses of Aitona. The supplementary information pertaining to payments due to officials of the court on ff.160-169 of our manuscript would presumably have been useful for a maestre racional – one of the official roles regulated in the Ordinacions – with responsibility for accounts at the royal court.

(4) Frederick North (1766–1827), 5th Earl of Guilford, colonial governor and book collector, many of whose manuscripts are now in the British Library; according to Munby, Phillipps Studies III, p.161.

(5) Thomas Thorp (1791-1851), bookseller; his Catalogue of extensive and curious collection of Books in most languages and every department of literature […] selected from the United Libraries of the Earl of Rockingham, Lords North, Glenbervie, and the Earl of Guilford […], 1829, no 1029; and sold to:

(6) Sir Thomas Phillipps (1792-1872); his MS no 6737 (small printed label on spine).

(7) Sotheby’s, 25 November 1969, lot 464.

(8) Joan Gili, The Dolphin Book Company, Oxford, Catalan publisher and bookseller. Sold via Jeremy Griffiths in 1994 to:

(9) The Schøyen Collection, MS 2336.

Content:
Later title page in Spanish pasted onto f.ii; table of contents ff.1-7; blanks ff.8-9; Ordinacions fetes per lo molt alt senyor en Pere terç Rey Darago sobre lo regiment de tots los officials de la sua cort ff.12-85v [Ordinances of Pedro IV]; Ordinatio feta p[er] lo molt alt e molt excellent princep e senyor lo se[n]yor en Pere terç Rey Darago de la manera con los reys Darago se faran consagrar e ells mateix se coronaran ff.86-99 [ceremonial for the coronation of the kings and queens of Aragon]; Addicions e declaracions fetes e ordonades per diverses Reys Darago sobre les Ordinacions de tots los officials de la Cort. E primeramente les addicions fetes per lo damunt senyor Rey en Pere terç, ff.99v-135 [Additional ordinances, first for the officials of the court of Pedro IV]; followed by his successors, from 1387-1416: Juan I ff.136-137v, Martín I ff.138-153, Fernando I ff.154-154v; blank f.155; Tots les negocis deius scrits se acostumen exercir no per ordinacio mas per stil de la cort del Senyor Rey ff.156-159 [Customs of the Court, ‘not by ordinance’, from the time of Alfonso IV]; Levament fet per lo Senyor Rey Alfonso Quart dels Officials de Casa del dit Senyor […], ff.160-169 [payments made at the court of Alfonso IV], with a colophon in Latin added by the scribe Salvius Calsada on f.169: ‘Salvius vocatur qui scripsit benedicatur: Cognomen eius Calsada dicitur esse’.

Our manuscript constitutes an early 15th-century copy of the Ordinances of Pedro IV, King of Aragon, first promulgated in 1344. Written in Catalan, they represent the first vernacular version of the texts regulating the running of the royal household and the duties of all the king's advisers, scribes, and officials. The lengthy document – titled ‘Ordinances Made by His Highness Peter the Third of Aragon on the Governance of All the Officials of His Court’ – was an almost literal translation of the Latin Leges Palatinae issued by Jaime III of Mallorca and followed the reincorporation of Mallorca into the Crown of Aragon in 1343. The first translation made at the behest of Pedro IV was undertaken by his secretary Mateu Adrià and personally reviewed by the monarch: that manuscript – which bears his signed revisions – was used as an exemplar for further copies commissioned by the king and was for many years held in the Archives of the Crown of Aragon. It was transferred to Madrid by ‘Royal Order of 20 November 1797’ and subsequently disappeared from sight for over a century, when it was rediscovered at the University of Valencia (published by Gimeno, Gozalbo & Trenchs (eds.), Ordinacions de la Casa i Cort de Pere el Ceremoniós, 2009).

The text of the Ordinacions as it exists in the present manuscript also includes the ceremonial for the rite of the coronation of kings of Aragon appended by the monarch and his collaborators in 1353. Not for nothing has Pedro IV been immortalised with the epithet ‘the Ceremonious’, reflecting his desire to exalt the function of royalty and to consolidate a written memory of the monarchy through enshrining a complex matrix of ceremonies, rites, and symbols underlining the centrality of the king (see J. Aurell and M. Serrano-Coll, ‘The Self-Coronation of Peter the Ceremonious (1336): Historical, Liturgical, and Iconographical Representations’, Speculum, vol. 89, no 1, 2014, pp. 66–95). After the regulations issued by Pedro IV (reigned 1336-1387), our manuscript incorporates later additions promulgated by his successors Juan I (1387-1396), Martín I (1396-1410) and Fernando I (1412-1416): the reign of Fernando I, then, offers a terminus ante quem for our manuscript, as no subsequent regnal regulations are included. Instead, the ordinances are followed by a list of historical Customs of the Court (ff.156-159), ending with the ‘Stil de Cort antiquat’ derived from the practices of Alfonso IV of Aragon (1327-1336). The final section of the manuscript (ff.160-169) details the payments due to officials of the Court during the reign of Alfonso IV, mentioning musicians, falconers, minstrels, secretaries and scribes, among others; the final entry in this section details expenses connected with the conquest of Sardinia in 1326/7.

The Ordinacions themselves describe in minute detail the organisation of a medieval court: they begin with a description of the duties of the various Officers of the Court, according to department in the royal household, and list the responsibilities of persons from the butler, cooks and provisioners to the falconers, doctors, mace-bearers and keepers of the horses. The tasks of the various categories of scribes employed by the monarch are thoroughly described: some are employed to copy documents, some to take letters, some to keep account, and others to copy instructions to members of the Household. The text then provides detailed descriptions for the conduct of the business of the Court, from the storage of meat to the provision of lighting, including the forms of routine to be followed on specific saint or other feast days.

The Ordinacions fetes per lo molt alt senyor en Pere terç Rey Darago were recorded in 11 copies of the 14th and 15th centuries in a 1985 census (see Pere Bohigas, Sobre manuscrits i biblioteques). This survey, which does not appear to be a comprehensive account of all medieval manuscripts of the Ordinacions, does reflect the fact that copies seem only to exist in European libraries: seven at the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris (MsS esp. 8, 62, 63, 64, 98, 99 and 100; one of these, esp. 98, a copy of 1412 made by a named scribe, Joan Coll); two in Madrid, at the Royal Library of the Escorial (Est. 3 n. 3) and the Lázaro Galdiano Museum (R.14.425; apparently a 14th-century copy in Aragonese); and two in Barcelona, at the Arxiu Històric - Ajuntament Barcelona (MS. B-49 and MS. B-78). No copy in North America was recorded by de Ricci (S. De Ricci, Census, 1935-7) and none seems to be owned by any British institution.

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11 Jun 2024
UK, London
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