Richard F. Gyug

title.none: Orchard, Sacramentary of Ratoldus (Richard F. Gyug)

identifier.other: baj9928.0608.014 06.08.14

identifier.issn: 1096-746X

description.statementofresponsibility: Richard F. Gyug, Fordham University,

publisher.none: .

date.issued: 2006

identifier.citation: Orchard, Nicholas. The Sacramentary of Ratoldus (Paris, Bibliotheque nationale de France, lat. 12052). Henry Bradshaw Society, 116. London: Boydell Press/Henry Bradshaw Society, 2005. Pp. ccvi, 602. $65.00 1870252225. ISBN: .

type.none: Review

relation.ispartof: The Medieval Review

The Medieval Review 06.08.14

Orchard, Nicholas. The Sacramentary of Ratoldus (Paris, Bibliotheque nationale de France, lat. 12052). Henry Bradshaw Society, 116. London: Boydell Press/Henry Bradshaw Society, 2005. Pp. ccvi, 602. $65.00 1870252225. ISBN: .

Reviewed by:

Richard F. Gyug
Fordham University

With the Vatican Gelasian (Reg. lat. 316), the Gellone Sacramentary (BNF lat. 12048), the Leofric Missal (Bodley 579)--also edited by Nicholas Orchard for the Henry Bradshaw Society--and the Sacramentary- Pontifical of Wolfgang of Regensburg (Verona, Biblioteca capitolare 87), the Sacramentary of Ratoldus (BNF lat. 12052) is one of a handful of sacramentary-pontificals, and has long deserved an edition. In the present volume, Orchard presents the contents of the manuscript in a careful edition, and provides a full and detailed study of the manuscript's composition, history and significance. Although written, as Orchard confirms, by or at the request of Ratoldus, abbot of Corbie (ca. 972-986), the manuscript was intended for a bishop or archbishop. It contains pontifical ordines, episcopal blessings and the mass texts typical of a full sacramentary. The manuscript was well known to the Maurists, and from their editions of parts of it, to generations of liturgical scholars. Orchard's complete edition and thorough study for the Henry Bradshaw Society is a substantial contribution to understanding early medieval liturgical transmission and composition. With early manuscripts, there are inevitably going to be problems, not all of which even the most thorough study can resolve. Such is the case with the Sacramentary of Ratoldus. For instance, Orchard's study brings readers little closer to understanding for whom Ratoldus prepared the manuscript. In the end, Orchard acknowledges that Jean Morin, writing in 1655, may have been closest to answering the question when he proposed that the manuscript was written before Ratoldus was abbot, though at his order, for Engrannus, a monk of Corbie who became bishop of Cambrai (ca. 957-ca. 960). Orchard raises an additional question of where Ratoldus had the book made, and leaves the answer for further palaeographical study. Whoever the intended recipient may have been, the manuscript was soon at Corbie, if it ever left, where its sacramentary was added to over the next generations. Faced with such un-resolvable questions of use, Orchard concentrates his study on the manuscript's sources and how the tenth-century liturgist worked with them. It was a creative process, beginning with how the elements of the manuscript are combined: the blessings are integrated with the mass texts, and several of the ordines are placed in the sacramentary at their liturgical moments, whether on Palm Sunday, in Holy Week, or, for ordinations, with the Ember Saturday in Lent. As Orchard demonstrates conclusively, the sacramentary texts are based on a sacramentary of Saint Denis that had traveled to or been influenced by the liturgies of Dol, Orleans and Saint Vaast. The pontifical ordines are dependent on a pontifical of Canterbury, perhaps that brought to the continent by Oswald, nephew of Oda of Canterbury (941-958), and are early witnesses to ordines otherwise preserved in England only from the eleventh century, especially the Second English Coronation Order. Orchard notes that the Sacramentary of Ratoldus thus confirms the tenth-century origins of parts of eleventh-century English pontificals. The third influence on the Sacramentary of Ratoldus was an English benedictional. The work is an excellent addition to the Henry Bradshaw Society's series, and to editions of important early medieval manuscripts. The extensive introduction, the use of tables for parallel texts, and the selected plates contribute to understanding the manuscript and its composition. Particularly valuable are the summary descriptions of comparable manuscripts. Nonetheless, if the study fills a gap, the edition itself is a compromise, being neither a facsimile of a unique, solitary manuscript, nor the synoptic edition of a center's liturgy from a coordinated series of books. The edition follows convention in its fidelity to the manuscript with varying typefaces (capitals for capitals, small text for small text such as musical items, italics for rubrics, monospaced letters for additions, and manuscript punctuation), but such conventions fall short of facsimiles in presenting mise-en-page information. Scholars of the book are unlikely, therefore, to draw conclusions from this sort of presentation, so it is unclear what end is being served by the varying typography. At the other extreme of editing, Orchard had less choice and could not have prepared a study of liturgical practice because it is unclear how the manuscript fit the liturgy of any locale. With a synoptic edition ruled out by the manuscript's idiosyncracies, what matters is how the liturgists writing the book showed their understanding of the liturgy, and here Orchard's study of sources and parallels is clear, full and provides a wealth of information about a wide range of early materials.