THOMPSON, Mother Jubilarian. FINE ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT CHOIRBOOK. Brussels: Dominican Convent of English Nuns, [ca 1724-1728.

$ 7,000.00

Folio (19 4/8 x 13 4/8 inches).  132 numbered pages of thick paper, most in black and red ink with 6 staves of 4 lines per page, with musical notation, 3 miniature illuminated initials, comprising: a winged heart in a landscape; emblem including heart, cross, crown of thorns and Holy Ghost; Pentecostal dove with fiery hearts emerging from its beak, one large calligraphic ornamental letter incorporating fruit pasted in, other large initials in red, blue or gold, the headings in English, early manuscript index tipped-in at end. Contemporary speckled calf, gilt, remains of 2 pairs of brass clasps and catches (with early repairs to head and foot of the spine and corners, surface abrasions).

Provenance: with manuscript note at the end of the Index: "This Book was written by Mother Jubilarian Thompson, when Chantress: God reward her long labours, & rest her pious soul - she deces'd Decr. 8, 1728".

Withdrawn from the library of St. Dominic's Convent at Stone in Staffordshire in the early 20th-century, with their note on the front paste-down: "This book of Masses and Sequences was made by one of the Dominican Sisters of the Convent of english Nuns at Brussels (Mother Jubilarian Thompson who died in 1728 as s stated inside the back cover) which is now represented at Carlsbrooke. On page 108 is a Credo composed by Fr. Green, or Fr. John Raymund Greene, O.P. who for many years was their confessor. He died at Louvain in 1741, aged 86." 

Dr. Peter Leech (www.peterleech.com), eminent historian of Catholic Music writes "The only nun by the name of Thompson who is recorded as being at the English Dominican convent during the period 1650-1750 was Anne Thompson (name in Religion - Anna Maria) who is recorded as having died in 1728. See this link; http://wwtn.history.qmul.ac.uk/search/search.php?uid=&quote=no&given=&religion=&surname=Thompson&variants=on&cid=16&sdate=0&edate=0&loc=#. However, there is no mention of 'Jubilarian' as a name. If Anna is the candidate, this might be a reference to her having celebrated a Jubilee. She entered the convent in 1674 and was still there in 1724 (her 50th year as a Nun), which might also pin down the date of the manuscript (that is, circa 1724-8)". Catalogued by Kate Hunter