Only copy of 15th century sacred book set for public display

April 7th, 2008 - 5:14 pm ICT by admin  

London , Apr 7 (ANI): A rare and only near-complete copy in existence of a 15 th century sacred book, The Sarum Missal, is set to be put on display.

Published in 1487 by William Caxton, the first English printer, the Sarum Missal was purchased by the National Trust for a whopping 465,000 pounds of which around 316,000 pounds were used from the Heritage Lottery Fund and 100,000 from The Art Fund were used to pay for the book.

The remaining expenses came from foundations and individuals.

Now, the sacred tome will be on display next year in the library of Lyme Park , the stately home near Stockport, in Cheshire , where it was found.

Those who visit to see the book will also be able to view images of the pages on a computer.

The book has 243 of the original 266 leaves and two hand-coloured woodcuts and was used to celebrate Mass. In fact, its 19th-century binding still has fragments of the 15th-century original.

A number of similar books had been destroyed during the Reformation and many parts of the Sarum Missal have been censored. Besides this, the name of St Thomas a Becket and prayers for the Pope were also crossed out.

The other surviving fragments include three leaves from another copy, which are being kept at Durham University . (ANI)

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