December 24, 2011, by Andrew Burden

24 December: The Wollaton Antiphonal

The Wollaton AntiphonalThe Wollaton Antiphonal is a large church service book made in around 1430. Its purpose is illustrated in this illuminated initial which shows three clerics singing. The Antiphonal was made for Sir Thomas Chaworth, who was the richest man in Nottinghamshire at the time, and no expense was spared.

When Chaworth died it was bought for a local Parish Church, St Leonard’s in Wollaton, Nottinghamshire, and has now been placed in the care of the University’s Manuscripts and Special Collections where work is being carried out to conserve and protect it.

But the plans for the Antiphonal don’t stop there. That’s because Professor Thorlac Turville-Petre from the University’s School of English has gained funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council in order to make this important manuscript available on a wider scale with the help of new digital software called Turning the Pages.

This video shows the aims of the project and the implications it will have:

If you can’t see the YouTube video, try this alternative location or view on iTunes U.

All of the items featured in our e-Advent calendar are from the University’s historic library holdings, held in Manuscripts and Special Collections. For more information on the wide range of materials available, take a look at their website and blog or contact the curators on

Impact Campaign
Find out more about our Manuscripts development plans and how you can support us via the Impact Campaign website.

Posted in HistoryManuscriptsMusic