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Initial A: A Man Singing
Northern Italy, Italy (Place created)
about 1460 - 1480
Tempera colors and gold leaf on parchment
Leaf: 60.3 x 44 cm (23 3/4 x 17 5/16 in.)
A man shown in profile sings from an open book containing a chant and musical notation written on red staves. The illuminator evoked the sound of the singer's voice through fine gold vines that emerge from his open mouth. Although this manuscript would have been used by a choir rather than by an individual as the image in the initial suggests, the scene conveys the book's purpose as a source of music for devotional singing.