PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A discount hunter who went to an property sale in Maine to discover a KitchenAid mixer, a bookshelf or classic clothes walked away with a 700-year-old treasure.
As a substitute of a kitchen equipment, Will Sideri stumbled upon a framed doc hanging on a wall. It had elaborate script in Latin, together with musical notes and gold thrives. A sticker mentioned 1285 AD. Primarily based on what he’d seen in a manuscripts class at Colby Faculty, the doc regarded downright medieval.
And it was a discount at $75.
Lecturers confirmed the parchment was from The Beauvais Missal, used within the Beauvais Cathedral in France, and dated to the late thirteenth century. It was used about 700 years in the past in Roman Catholic worship, they mentioned.
An skilled on manuscripts mentioned the doc, first reported by the Maine Monitor, could possibly be price as a lot as $10,000.
After spying the weird manuscript, Sideri contacted his former Colby Faculty professor, who was conversant in it as a result of there’s one other web page within the faculty assortment. The professor reached out to a different educational who’d researched the doc. They shortly confirmed the authenticity.
The parchment was a part of a prayer ebook and monks’ liturgy, mentioned Lisa Fagin Davis, govt director of the Medieval Academy of America and a professor of manuscript research at Simmons College in Boston.
The complete missal was as soon as owned by William Randolph Hearst, the newspaper writer, earlier than being offered within the Forties and, a lot to the consternation of at the moment’s teachers, was divvied up into particular person pages, she mentioned.
The follow was frequent within the early twentieth century. “1000’s of distinctive manuscripts had been destroyed and scattered this manner,” Davis mentioned.
Davis has painstakingly researched The Beauvais Missal, and has tracked down greater than 100 particular person pages throughout the nation. All instructed, the missal numbered 309 pages in its unique type.
The web page bought by Sideri is of explicit curiosity to students.
It’s a treasure each due to its age and situation, which is much better than the opposite web page within the Colby assortment, mentioned Megan Cook dinner, Sideri’s former professor, who teaches medieval literature at Colby.
The parchment is price upward of $10,000, in accordance with Davis. However Sideri mentioned he has no intention of promoting it.
He mentioned he likes the historical past and fantastic thing about the parchment — and the story of how he stumbled upon it.
“That is one thing on the finish of the day that I do know is cool,” he mentioned. “I didn’t purchase this anticipating to promote it.”
Comply with David Sharp on Twitter: @David_Sharp_AP