January 13, 889. Consecration


In the ninth century, the castle of Tona, located on the plain of Vic in eastern Catalonia, guarded the surrounding territory and defended it from possible Saracen attacks during the struggle with the Muslims for control of Spain. The Church of Saint Andrew was built close to the castle by the village inhabitants. They provided it with ornaments, books, and liturgical objects, and supplied it with houses and lands for its upkeep. The bishop of Vic, called Gotmar, consecrated the church in 888 and gave to it a nearby house and some feudal revenues. The priest Athanagild testified to the act. This very well preserved document, written in Carolingian minuscule, contains at the end a phrase in Latin, surgite, sancti, de abitationibus vestris, loca sanctificate et plebem benedicite et nos homines peccatores in pace custodite (Rise, oh ye saints, from your dwellings, sanctify the place and bless the people and keep ye us sinful men in peace), with musical notations, which probably was sung on the day of the consecration. These musical neumes are considered the oldest in Europe.

Last updated: January 13, 2015