Stiftsbibl. cod. XXV/2, 19. fol. 17

Dedicated to the Founding of the Abbey

This miniature is a part of a group specific to the dedication of the founding of Ramsey Abbey. The lower panel shows a scene illustrating the founding of the Abbey on an island in the fens. This generally conforms to the account given in Edgar’s Charter, the participants being identifiable as Duke Ailwyn, his attendant, and Archbishop Oswald. Ailwyn is sealing his promise and Oswald is driving wild beasts away with his cross staff. This driving out of wild beasts is not in the account of Ramsey Abbey, although such accounts are typical of monastic foundation legends, especially in the fens( look at the founding of Crowland by St Guthlac)

Above this scene is a composition whose unusual combination of iconographic motifs, suggests a special Ramsey purpose. The crowned and resurrected Christ, shows his wounds and blessing, is enthroned alongside the crowned Virgin, who holds a book and acknowledges the blessing of Christ. Behind this pair are two censing angels and a cloth of honour held aloft in lions’ mouths. Flanking the throne are St John the Evangelist and St John the Baptist. At the sides, running more than half way down the page – overlapping the upper part of the lower scene – is a throng of figures, princely and clerical, two of them holding flasks.

The appearance of historical personages – as the throng of kings, archbishops, bishops and noblemen in the Ramsey miniature – is and exception.

(Ref 21)