Item No: mca2110110
Additional Title: Noels (Christmas carols)
Rare Book Department
Annunciation to the Shepherds
This manuscript can be dated to ca. 1520, with sixteenth-century additions.
This manuscript contains a rare collection of French "Noels" or Christmas carols, many of which are unpublished. These were popular songs sung by the laity in celebration of Christmas and outside of a liturgical or ritual context. The agrarian and pastoral themes that appear in the illustrations throughout the manuscript reflect the rustic associations that this form of popular song carried, due in part to the fact that according to the Bible, it had been the lowly shepherds who had been the first to hear of Christ's birth. The carol shown here celebrates the annunciation of the angel to the shepherds and is fittingly illustrated with contemporary images of peasants at work, and sleep, watching over their flock.
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Lewis E 211