Thomas More’s Prayer Book: A Facsimile Reproduction of the Annotated Pages [Book Review]

Philosophical Studies (Dublin) 18:311-313 (1969)
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These superbly reproduced annotated pages form a profoundly moving human document which certainly ought to appeal to a wider public than those specially interested in St Thomas More’s life and writings. The ‘Prayer Book’ referred to in the title consists of two books, bound together. The first is a Book of Hours, namely the Little Hours of Our Lady, together with a number of occasional prayers, the Seven Penitential Psalms, the Fifteen Gradual Psalms, the Litany of the Saints and the Office of the Dead. The second book is the Psalter, really a one-volume Breviary without the lessons and collects, for as well as the psalms the Psalter contains the dominical and ferial antiphons and hymns. The binding dates from 1530-1540, though it is not possible to determine whether the two books were bound together while in St Thomas More’s possession. The fact that each now lacks a number of pages seems to indicate a later binding. Inside the front cover, on a pasted down leaf which may have been originally a fly-leaf, is written: Liber quondam Thomae Mori militis in multis locis manu sua propria inscriptus.



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