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For the purposes of the new edition, every poem has been assigned a unique short title. The original short titles, taken eclectically from a number of sources, are retained as alternative short titles.
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CSM Number : 288
Short name: St Dunstan and the Virgin’s Choir
Incipit: A madre de Jesucristo/ vedes a quen aparece
Refrain: A madre de Jesucristo/ vedes a quen aparece/ a quen o ben de seu Fillo/ e dela aver merece.
Summary of narrative
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Setting: the Monastery of St Augustine, Canterbury Protagonist(s): a monk [identified in other versions as St Dunstan]

A monk, a native of the fertile region of Canterbury, lived a virtuous life and served the Virgin with enthusiasm.

One time, while he was visiting the tomb in which St Augustine lies, he prostrated himself on the ground in front of the Virgin’s chapel.

As he lay there, the Virgin appeared, accompanied by many saints, singing songs about her virtues.

They also sang a verse about the martyrs who are honoured in heaven.

The virgins sang together beautifully, and one encouraged the others, exhorting them to sing well before the Virgin whose beauty outshines the sun.

The monk witnessed this and gave thanks to God and his mother. He had always lived an exemplary life, but he lived an even better one thereafter and died at a ripe old age.

Metrical data
Stanza: 15' 15' 15' 15' Refrain: 15' 15'
No. of Stanzas: 8
Rhyme scheme: AA | bbba Zejel: Yes
MS locations:
F19, E288
Poncelet reference
Alio item tempore praefata pastorum ecclesiae limina simili (45)
Keywords
apparition, monks, Saint Augustine, Saints (other), singing, song, soul, vigil, vision
Discography
Click HERE for a list of recordings of this poem
Miracle Collection
St. Dunstan Pez
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Vincent de Beauvais
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Gil de Zamora
(Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, MS 9503)
St. Dunstan Lisbon Mariale
(Lisbon, B.N., MS Alcobacense 149)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Legenda Aurea (Voragine)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir William of Malmesbury
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Adgar
(London, BL, Egerton 612)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Nigel of Canterbury
(London, BL, MS Cotton Vespasian D.xix)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Mariale Magnum
(Paris Bibliothèque Nationale lat 3177)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Miraculorum B. Mariae. libri III
(Reims 1400)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir BL Mariale 5
(London, BL, Additional MS 15723, Collection 2, ff. 70-92)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Bartholomew of Trent
(University of Bologna, Codice 1794)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Bartholomew of Trent
(University of Bologna, Codice 1794)
St. Dunstan Bartholomew of Trent
(University of Bologna, Codice 1794)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Jean Mielot, Miracles de Nostre Dame
(Oxford, Bodleian, Douce MS 374)
St. Dunstan and the Virgin's Choir Anglo-Norman Miracles of the Virgin
(London, BL, Royal 20 B XIV, fols 102v-169)
BITAGAP ID
4040
Bibliography
San Dunstán, arzobispo de Cantorbery, en una cantiga del Rey D. Alfonso el Sabio
Fita, Fidel
Treinta leyendas por Gil de Zamora
Fita, Fidel
CSM 288: Some Musical Implications
Lawson, Wendy