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The Lectern

On one side of the Ranworth lectern, or cantor's desk, is a plainsong chant 'Gloria tibi domine' (Glory to thee, O Lord). The Gloria was sung at midday daily as part of the little offices of the Virgin Mary. On the other side is a painted eagle, the symbol of St.John, speaking the opening words of his Gospel, 'In principio erat verbum' (In the beginning was the Word). The two names, lectern and cantor's desk, describe its dual function in singing and reading. 

Ranworth lectern or cantor's desk

It is amazing that a 15th century lectern, so similar to the one illustrated in the antiphoner, was not reduced to firewood when so much else was destroyed during the Reformation after 1549. But nevertheless, 500 years later it is still used every Sunday.

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