This vellum manuscript leaf is a single page from what must have been a beautifully illustrated volume of text and music. The page is small, so it is unlikely that this music was set before a choir and used to aid in practices or performances. Though vellum is a tough material that clearly stands the test of time (this page is from the thirteenth century) there are still challenges with preserving such artifacts. The biggest and somewhat saddest being that often the whole book cannot be salvaged. After all, Special Collection’s giant metal bound Harry Potter book cannot even be opened due to spinal damage. (Thus rendering the contents virtually invisible since there is no way to view them without destroying the object). The book that this was separated from may be out there somewhere missing pages, or perhaps there is no longer a book, only single pages like this one scattered in academic institutions and libraries around the world. But perhaps it is better this way. A book spends the majority of its time closed in a library, and even when displayed can only show two pages at a time. Limited to one leaf, the task of choosing which page to view is eliminated as are all the hardships of preserving a bound volume. It is unfortunate that there are not a hundred pages to flip through, yet one well preserved page may be of more value than one badly preserved book- or worse, nothing at all.