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les Enluminures

medieval text manuscripts Blog

Welcome to the Medieval Text Manuscripts Blog!  This blog highlights what makes our text manuscripts particularly interesting and appealing to us – and (we hope) to you too!  Here we explore what these books can tell us about how they were made and used.  We also share what we know of their most fascinating and unusual contents, makers, and owners.  Some of our discoveries are quite significant, some merely amusing, and some bizarre.  All medieval manuscripts have much to reveal to their attentive modern audiences.  Follow our blog to learn more about them.

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The Secret of Secrets

We usually try to give our blogs a catchy title. In this case, we didn’t have to try very hard. What could be more intriguing than a book called the Secret of Secrets...

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The Popess and the Vello-Maniac

It can be mind-boggling to think about how many hands a manuscript has passed through between the time that its pages were copied an

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A Legal Reference Book

Spend enough time with medieval manuscripts and you wind up wishing their early readers had been a bit more forthcoming in identifying themselves and indicating how they used their books, preferably in the flyleaves and margins of the selfsame books...

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"Beer is made by men, wine by God"

This week’s post is dedicated to a unique, unpublished wine manuscript from the fifteenth century: “the Statutes Regulating the Wine Trade and Transportation in Bologna.”

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Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder

Some medieval and Renaissance manuscripts survive in almost pristine condition. There is a special pleasure in turning the pages of manuscripts such as our copy of Thomas Aquinas’s commentary on Aristotle’s Ethics...

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Book of Secrets

Look too briefly at the book below and it might trick you. The faded title written hastily upon its modest binding proclaims it to be...

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A Love Token

We’re guessing love is on your mind right now, whether it be a many-splendored thing or full of anxious fear (or both!).

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The Deluge of Doom!

Aside from the prodigious quantity of snow it deposited on the American East Coast, one of the most notable stories about the recent Winter Storm Jonas was...

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Smuggled Writings and Banned Books

He prophesied a “Sword of of the Lord” poised over the earth. He oversaw the immolation of great works of art and literature in so-called bonfires of the vanities. He brought down the Medici and defied the pope. He was challenged to a trial by fire...

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When Coats of Arms Wear Many Hats

Capping our last post on medieval heraldry, this week’s post is dedicated to heraldic headgear and the stories it can tell us. The previous post addressed, among other things, the symbolic meanings and associations linked to the colors of a coat of arms...

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