PRoMs - The Production and Reading of Music Sources

Mise-en-page in manuscripts and printed books containing polyphonic music, 1480—1530

Manuscript: Munich, Germany, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Musica MS 53 (olim H.C.49; = MaiM 12)

Manuscript type: choirbook

RISM siglum: D-Mbs 53

DIAMM Source Key: 2205

Image repositories: Digitale Bibliothek (BSB Munich)

Folio(s): All folios

Date: c. 1510-25

Bente 1968

Location of origin: Munich, Germany ; Vienna, Austria


Presumably copied in Vienna, for use by the imperial court chapel of Maximilian I (1459-1519). Probably taken to Munich by Ludwig Senfl c. 1523, when he began serving at the court chapel of Wilhelm IV, Duke of Bavaria (1493-1550). Kept in Munich Hofkapelle library until end of 18th century, then transferred to ducal court library, whose holdings formed foundation of present Bayerische Staatsbibliothek.


Person: Senfl, Ludwig
Person type: scribe
Note: Possibly copied by Ludwig Senfl (<a href="/bibliography/#entry364" data-tooltip="" class="has-tip tip-top reference" data-placement="top" rel="tooltip" data-original-title="" title="Bente, Martin, Neue Wege der Quellenkritik und die Biographie Ludwig Senfls (Wiesbaden, 1968) "><i class="fa fa-book"></i>Bente 1968</a>) although that ascription is now considered doubtful.

Basis for description: original

Munich, Germany, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Musica MS 53 (olim H.C.49; = MaiM 12), All folios

Physical description

Material: paper

Number of leaves: 217

Format: upright

Page dimensions: 465 x 325

Quire structure: Text version

Other devices: Modern pencil foliation recto top right, 1-217 (by J. J. Maier).

Page details (zoom):

Preparation and Copying

All folios


Disposition of Voice Parts Key

Pricking sometimes
Ruled grid often,
single line to left and right
Ruling pattern fairly regular
often broadly ruled on eight-line grid
Staves omitted from grid occasionally
Incomplete staves sometimes
Note length of staves adjusted to amount of music
Medium and colour of grid Frequency Folios Note
hard point or lead point always
Colour of staves Frequency Folios Note
black always
Ruling medium Frequency Folios Note
single rastrum always
Indentation for initials Frequency Folios Note
double sometimes for missing initials (sung text in D, voice-names in other voices)
single often usually for visual separation only
Extra space between voice parts Frequency Folios Note
variable space, not on grid sometimes
staves not ruled on grid sometimes
Space provided for separate text Frequency Folios Note
no separate text always

Copying of text and music

Language(s) Latin
Order of Copying music first
Presence/absence of text Voice part Frequency Folios Note
fully texted with one text all voice parts always
Colour(s) of notation black
Type(s) of notation void mensural
Type of notation note rhomboid-shaped notation
Monophonic notation absent
Level of calligraphy high
Text 1
Types of script textura
Level of calligraphy high
Colour(s) of text black
Multiple texts no
Abbreviations some
Non underlaid vocal text none
Liminary text Voice designations (occasionally), composer ascriptions (normally), both in red
Text 2
Types of script display script
Types of script size position Voice designations, composer ascriptions
Types of script note textura
Colour(s) of text red


Level of Decoration fair
Decoration initial type Frequency Folios Initial type(s) Size position Description Discrepancies
painted initials occasionally 2v-3r, 47v-48r, 55v-56r, 74v-75r, 85v-86r, 99v-100r, 111v-112r, 119v-120r, 130v-131r, 139v-140r, 151v-152r, 162v-163r, 174v-175r, 182v-183r, 193v-194r, 205v-206r decorated initial letters for text underlay or voice-names in gold and silver on ground of dark, red, purple, green or black within frame of a different colour from the same palette
initials planned occasionally for beginning of internal main sections, indicated by double indentation and first letter missing in discantus.