This manuscript and the subsequent sixteen volumes were created for use at the Augsburg Cathedral. This multi-volume antiphoner is not well-known. It is not included in the recent catalogues of the Danish Royal Library, and so, has been identified with its old signature ("Gl. Kgl. Saml. 3449 8°") from a library catalogue of the year 1784 (Gl. kgl. Saml. = Old Royal Collection). The <i>Catalogus manuscriptorum in Octavo Bibliothecae Regiae</i> (1784) lists this source as "Breviarium in Membrana eleganti, rubris miniatis et litt. init. auro et coloribus distinctis, cont. Hymnos per totum annum Notis Musicis interlinearibus distinctos, ut et Lectiones nonullas (XVII Vol.)".
Copenhagen 3449 8o constitutes the only known preserved Office source for the liturgy of Augsburg cathedral; it contains more or less the whole chant repertoire. The printed antiphoner edited by Ratdolt in 1495 (London, British Library, printed book IB. 6753, indexed in Cantus) and some manuscript antiphoners from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries follow the cathedral liturgy but contain principally chants for Vespers. The texts of the chant repertoire contained in Copenhagen 3449 8o are already found in manuscript and printed breviaries of the fifteenth century. These breviaries also contain the texts of a large number of late medieval special Offices (amongst others, for the two Augsburg saints Afra and Ulrich) and responsory prosulae, all of which are found in Copenhagen 3449 8o.
Apart from the profusion of special offices, the chant repertoire is quite typical of south German sources, with analogies to the Hirsau tradition (but with secular cursus). A synopsis of antiphon melodies (cf. doctoral thesis of Robert Klugseder on the chant tradition of the Benedictine monastery of SS Ulrich & Afra in Augsburg) also allies Copenhagen 3449 8o to a group of other south German sources (e.g. Zwiefalten, Bamberg, St Emmeram Regensburg, etc.).
It is difficult to say why this antiphoner was copied so late in the sixteenth century. The distinct traces of usage indicate that it was not produced simply as an item for the archives. After the confusions of the Reformation and the reorganization of the liturgy after the Council of Trent, no one would expect such an antiphoner to have been made.
The tradition of the Augsburg cathedral church, represented by Copenhagen 3449 8o, has no similarities with the late medieval tradition of the monastery of SS Ulrich & Afra in Augsburg (D-Mbs clm 4303ff). The latter tradition clearly reflects the influence of the “Melk reform.” However, the Copenhagen source has many similarities with the antiphoner in two volumes from Kranj (Krainburg) in Slovenia (Ljubljana 18 and 19). These books were written in Augsburg in 1491 and conform to a large extent with the liturgical tradition of Augsburg cathedral.
It is unknown how the books came to Denmark, but it was probably during the Thirty Years' War. The manuscript was at the Copenhagen Library by 1787.
An unusual characteristic of this manuscript is that, for all antiphons, the first verse of each psalm or canticle has been written out in full and completely notated. These psalm- and canticle-verses, not usually present in antiphoners, have been assigned individual records in this index. These entries have been indicated with "PS" in the genre field (for both psalm and canticle texts); psalm numbers and canticle names have been entered into the addendum field.
The differentiae within each mode have been numbered with a two-digit system: an upper-case letter indicating the final pitch of the differentia and a sequentially-ordered numeral. Differentiae that vary only in terms of immediately repeated notes, neumation, or the presence or absence of liquesence have been assigned the same two-digit differentia code, but are distinguished with a lowercase letter suffix (e.g. A1a, A1b, A1c, etc.).
The manuscript is written on parchment with red borders, octavo format. Brown leather cover, originally with clasps (now damaged), binders in the corners, stamps with gold imprinting. The manuscript is in a good state of preservation aside from the worn covers. Front cover has a Christus monogram with a cross and Corpus Christi, and the back cover shows Maria and Madonna with child (orb and sceptre, Madonna with corona on crescent moon). Important feasts feature rich illuminations, including f. 1r (Advent) and f. 174v (Nativitas Domini). The text is written in Gothic script with red and blue initials.
- Hoeynck, F.A.. Geschichte der kirchlichen Liturgie des Bisthums Augsburg. Augsburg: 1889.
- Hofmann-Brandt, Helma. Die Tropen zu den Responsorien des Officiums. 2 vols. Erlangen: 1971.
- Klugseder, Robert. Quellen des gregorianischen Chorals für das Offizium aus dem Kloster St. Ulrich und Afra Augsburg. Regensburger Studien zur Musikgeschichte, 4. Regensburg: 2007.