The Squarcialupi Codex is the vastest and most refined of all ancient manuscripts of the Italian music copied in Florence during the first twenty years of the fifteenth century. The over 300 pieces it contains – to almost half of which only this source bears witness – are the work of nearly all the most-renowned composers of the fourteenth century, from the generation active during the first half of the century to those still active during the first decades of the fifteenth century.

The manuscript is richly illuminated in gold and precious colours which place it among the most magnificent works in the history of Italian illumination. Recent iconographic research confirms that the miniatures and splendid illuminations had their origins in the Florentine scriptorium of Santa Maria degli Angeli between 1410 and 1415. At one time the codex was a possession of the celebrated Florentine organist Antonio Squarcialupi (1417-1480), as is stated by the inscription on the first sheet: 'This book belongs to Antonio di Bartolomeo Squarcialupi, organist in Santa Maria del Fiore'.

Later it was owned by Giuliano de' Medici and subsequently passed to the Palatine Library; at the end of the eighteenth century it was transferred together with other volumes to the Laurentian Library where it is preserved to this day, marked Palatino 87, and still has its same elegant binding.

Binding description

Brown leather binding on wooden boards, dating from the end of the fifteenth century.

We have 1 facsimile edition of the manuscript "Squarcialupi Codex": Codice Squarcialupi facsimile edition, published by Giunti Editore, 1992

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Manuscript book description compiled by the publisher.

Codice Squarcialupi

Florence: Giunti Editore, 1992

  • Commentary (English, Italian) by Gallo, Alberto F.; Nádas, John; Von Fischer, Kurt; Bellosi, Luciano; Ferro Luraghi, Margherita; Pirrotta, Nino; Tavani, Giuseppe; Cattin, Giulio; Ziino, Agostino
  • Limited Edition: 998 copies
  • Full-size color reproduction of the entire original document, Squarcialupi Codex: the facsimile attempts to replicate the look-and-feel and physical features of the original document; pages are trimmed according to the original format; the binding might not be consistent with the current document binding.

A box (size 320 x 460 mm), with leather-covered spine with gold stamping, contains the codex and a text volume of 290 pages printed on handmade paper and bound in Fabriano paper.

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