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Military Illustrations from

Las Cantigas de Santa Maria

"The Cantigas de Santa Maria is one of the most notable literary productions of the court of Alfonso X. The Cantigas consist of more than four hundred poems set to music extolling the virtues of the Virgin Mary, and many of the poems derive from events of Alfonso's reign. While the poems were written in 1280, before the illustrations, which were completed on or around 1284, the illustrations have drawn scholars into a world of crosscultural references and literary parallels. There are four surviving Cantigas manuscripts: two live in the Biblioteca de San Lorenzo el Real at the El Escorial palace near Madrid - MS T.I. 1, also known as the Códice Rico, and the MS B.1.2 - the third manuscript is in Madrid at the Biblioteca Nacional, MS 10.069, and the last example is in Florence, Italy at the Biblioteca Nazionale, MS Banco Rari 20." Sarah. A. Cosgrove

Full Pages of Military Interest from the Cantigas de Santa Maria


Pages from: codex MS T. I. 1 (Códice Rico).
Cantiga 12 Armoured & unarmoured infantry
Cantiga 19 - The Three Knights.
Cantiga 22 featuring unarmoured Spanish spearmen
Cantiga 28 featuring a siege of Constantinople
Cantiga 35 featuring ships & Moorish soldiers in galeases
Cantiga 46 Moors, conversion to christianity.
Cantiga 51 - The Count of Poitiers and his men laid siege to a castle in Orleans.
Cantiga 63 featuring soldiers in zig-zag livery
Cantiga 95 featuring moors in galleys and unarmoured spearmen
Cantiga 99 featuring moorish troops
Cantiga 119 featuring spearmen, demons & angels
Cantiga 121 featuring mounted armoured knights without helmets.
Cantiga 165 featuring muslim cavalry, mounted drummers & trumpeters and armoured infantry
Cantiga 181 A Moroccan army is defeated by another with the banner of Holy Mary
Cantiga 187a featuring Granadine cavalry
Cantiga 187b featuring Granadine cavalry & infantry

Pages from: codex Florencia Ms Banco Rari 20
Cantiga CSM 205 featuring military order troops
Cantiga CSM 207 featuring a knight in armour with partially attached mittens
Cantiga CSM 256 featuring Granadine crossbowmen
Cantiga CSM 271 - An armoured spanish ship's crew, and andalusian crossbowmen & spearmen.
Cantiga CSM 299 featuring the Order of the Star

Individual Panels of Military Interest from the Cantigas de Santa Maria

A larger list of Cantigas de Santa Maria on both civilian and military subjects

Captions from The Oxford Cantigas de Santa Maria Database
All the illustrated pages from Escorial Cantiga Ms T. I. 1 - Códice Rico
All the illustrated pages from Florencia Cantiga Ms Banco Rari 20
The Toledo Cantiga manuscript (MS 10.069) is illuminated but not illustrated.
For illustrations of musical subjects in Escorial MS B.1.2 see The Cantigas de Santa Maria
Illustrations of named musical instruments being played in Escorial MS B.1.2.

13th century Spanish & Moorish Soldiers in the frescos of The Conquest of Mallorca
Other Illustrations of Spanish & North African Costume & Soldiers

Other 13th Century Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers
Index of Illustrations of Costume & Soldiers