“Scribere proposui”:
Notes on the “Danza della Morte” in the “Llibre Vermell”

Giampaolo Mele
Università di Sassari. Dipartimento di Scienze Umanistiche e Sociali


The cod. 1 of the Monastery of Montserrat in Catalonia, known as Llibre Vermell, contains a Dance of Death whose roots reach back to 13th-century texts on the De contempt mundi. Its refrain begins with Ad mortem festina- mus and its first stanza with Scribere proposui. After a review of the current research on the topic, this study offers new hypotheses and observations on ecdotic, metrical, and strophic aspects of this famous text, which pilgrims routinely sang, while dancing, at the time of the Black Death. New con- cordances with the 13th-century text Scribere proposui are provided; one of them, preserved with melody in a 14th-century manuscript held in the Bi- blioteca Alessandrina, has not been considered in studies on this topic thus far. 

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