The Great Canterbury Psalter

The Great Canterbury Psalter f. 70r, psalm 39  With expectation have I waited for the Lord and he was attentive to me

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f. 70r, psalm 39  With expectation have I waited for the Lord and he was attentive to me

The psalm tells of the assurance of the just man that God always supports him. At the top right, God, in a semicircle, holding a book, raises his hand in blessing (v. 2, Expectans expectavi Dominum et intendit michi // With expectation I have waited for the Lord, and he was attentive to me). At the left, two devils with spears are forcing down into rocks seven men, who are trying to protect themselves with shields as they are falling down (v. 15, Confundantur et revereantur simul ... Convertantur retrorsum et revereantur qui volunt michi mala // Let them be confounded and ashamed together ... Let them turn backward and be ashamed that desire evils to me). Next to the devils, the psalmist, holding a scroll and a book and standing on a stone slab, is addressing three men (v. 3, Et statuit supra petram pedes meos // He set my feet on a rock). Next to them, a man holds two goats by the horns as he turns away from an altar in a church which is surrounded by four men (v. 7, Sacrificium et oblationem noluisti // Burnt offering and sin offering you do not require; v. 10, Annuntiavi iusticiam tuam in ecclesia magna // I have declared your justice in a great church). At the bottom centre three men are hunting with falcon and hounds (v. 5, vanitates et insanias falsas // vanities and lying follies). At the far right three men stand holding spears and shields.


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