The Dating and Early History of the León Antiphoner

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


The ‘León Antiphoner’ (León, Cathedral Library, MS 8) is the most complete manuscript containing Old Hispanic chant, comprising office and mass chants for the whole church year. As such, the León Antiphoner is the most studied Old Hispanic source. Despite this, its dating is controversial and hypotheses have ranged from c. 906 (Menéndez Pidal) up to the eleventh century (Zapke and others). My recent analysis of the cryptographic inscriptions found at the bottom of fols. 128v and 149r and my reattribution of the royal monograms inscribed on fol. 4v demand a reappraisal of the dating and early history of the ‘León Antiphoner’. I propose to discuss my research findings and explain why the León Antiphoner can now be securely dated to the years 900-905 and his patron identified as Saint Froilán, Bishop of León. Furthermore, I discuss the fact that from the middle of the tenth century onwards, the León-Astur royal family treated the Antiphoner as a royal insignia and used it as a political object, to legitimate its power through the addition of monograms on it.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventMusic Manuscripts and Their Afterlives - Great Hall, Sutherland Building, Northumberland Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Duration: 9 Apr 20169 Apr 2016


ConferenceMusic Manuscripts and Their Afterlives
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
CityNewcastle upon Tyne


Dive into the research topics of 'The Dating and Early History of the León Antiphoner'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this