Cantus Network

libri ordinarii of the Salzburg metropolitan province


St. Emmeram

The Liber ordinarius of the Regensburg Benedictine monastery St. Emmeram

The three copies of the Liber ordinarius of the Benedictine monastery St. Emmeram in Regensburg (founded around 739), dated 1435 and 1444, are among the most significant sources of this type. The monastery's liturgical tradition can in part be traced back to the Carolingian period. The liturgy was shaped particularly by the work of St. Wolfgang, who was Bishop of Regensburg from 972 to 994. In the 11th century, the monastery was prolific in the composition of sequences and tropes. The offices for the local saints Emmeram, Dionysius and Wolfgang were also written during this period.

All three Libri ordinarii were produced during the abbacy of Wolfhard Strauss (1423-1451). The oldest, D-Mbs clm 14428 of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek in Munich, is written on parchment and is dated 23 January 1435 (the date it was either begun or completed). Clm 14183 is a copy, partly on paper and partly on parchment. The scribe of codex clm 14183, whom Ian Rumbold identified as Hermann Pötzlinger, copied the abovementioned date from the original source. Even though this is probably not the exact date, 1435 or 1436 are certainly possible dates for the manuscript. At this time, Pötzlinger was possibly an assistant at the monastery school (cf. Rumbold, Hermann Pötzlinger's ordinal). Pötzlinger is known as the scribe of the so-called "St. Emmeram Codex" (D-Mbs clm 14274), a collection of mostly polyphonic music that was partly produced in the milieu of Vienna University.

The third ordinarius, clm 14073, is particularly interesting. In many places, it confirms that the customs of clm 14428 (and clm 14183) persisted. However, it contains numerous changes, including deletions and substitutions, which probably suggest that the manuscript was adapted to the rules of the monastic reform of Kastl.

The many details on feast-day processions to the chapels and altars of the monastery church as well as to other stations on the monastery grounds are extremely valuable for research on local customs. Polyphonic singing ("organum") and the use of organs are referred to several times.

The calendars at the beginning of all three Libri ordinarii do not form part of the edition, even though they are especially informative as they contain numerous memorial entries. The calendar in clm 14428 is followed by a computus table, that in clm 14183 and 14073 by notes on customs during Advent and Lent. Non-liturgical documents were later added at the end of clm 14073 (cf. the descriptions of Wunderle and Neske).

by David Hiley and Gionata Brusa

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