A Mátyás Graduálé
The Gradual of King Matthias Corvinus of Hungary

National Széchényi Library, Budapest, Hungary. Cod. Lat. 424

Folio 149r


'I' INITIAL / 15th SUNDAY AFTER WHITSUN

Inclina, domine, aurem tuam ad me, et exaudi me: saluum fac seruum tuum, deus meus, sperantem in te; miserere mihi, domine, quoniam ad te clamaui tota die.
Psalm 85 1 A prayer for David himself. Incline thy ear, O Lord, and hear me: for I am needy and poor. 2 Preserve my soul, for I am holy: save thy servant, O my God, that trusteth in thee. 3 Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I have cried to thee all the day.

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An armoured Hungarian knight praying.
National Széchényi Library, Budapest

1480-1488. Probably made in Buda. Parchment.
The most richly illuminated manuscript in the Corvina collection is the second volume of a gradual containing the changing plainsong of the mass, probably used in the royal chapel. Besides the title-page, it was decorated with 46 large figural and numerous smaller initials. Some of the initials illustrate the passage of the Bible on which the liturgy is based, while others show scenes of secular life. Symbolical and emblematic images can also be found.



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