Manuscript Journeys

The idea of this blog is to create a metaphoric journey that, through manuscripts, will take us to different centuries, cultures, places and themes.

This blog is curated by Rromir Imami - Digital Communication professional for Cultural Heritage with passion to bring manuscript culture closer to wider audiences.

erikkwakkel:

Books on the go

There is nothing like reading outside. While we share this sentiment with medieval readers, back then you couldn’t just bring any book with you. Most of them had bindings with oak boards and were as big as modern magazines. As a result, even regular-size books weighed as much as a bag of potatoes. Pre-modern binders, clever lads, came up with different solutions to carry a book on your body. The most common one was to fit it with a leather wrapper that included a knot, which you could stick under your belt (Pic 3). Smaller and lighter objects, like a thin almanac (pic 4) or a prayerbook, such as the one owned by Anne Boleyn (Pic 1), could simply be tied to the belt with a string. The most elegant solution, however, is shown off by the red Arabic manuscript, which is to fit the book in a neat pouch, carried in your hand (Pic 2). With these techniques it was not so much an issue how to take a book with you, but through what means to do so. Off you go!

Pics and additional information - Pic 1 (top): London, British Library, Stowe MS 956, copied c. 1540 (more here); Pic 2 (red pouch): Arabic manuscript of c. 1650, Royal Library Stockholm (more here); Pic 3 (knot): New Haven, Beinecke Library, MS 84, copied in England, 15th century (more here); Pic 4 (cloth binding): recently purchased by the Wellcome Library in London (more here). More on such “girdle books” here and here

(via jcervant1)

jothelibrarian:

Pretty medieval manuscript of the day is a stunning book binding depicting the crucifixion. According to the caption on Flickr, the book dates from the twelfth century, but this binding is much later. Can you spot the engraved 15—-49 above the cross? This suggests the binding was produced around that time. Isn’t it beautiful?
Image source: Creative Commons licensed by e-codices via Flickr.

jothelibrarian:

Pretty medieval manuscript of the day is a stunning book binding depicting the crucifixion. According to the caption on Flickr, the book dates from the twelfth century, but this binding is much later. Can you spot the engraved 15—-49 above the cross? This suggests the binding was produced around that time. Isn’t it beautiful?

Image source: Creative Commons licensed by e-codices via Flickr.

artofthedarkages:

2v, Psalter, MS 32, Universiteitsbibliotheek Utrecht

artofthedarkages:

2v, Psalter, MS 32, Universiteitsbibliotheek Utrecht

(via blancefleur)

jeannepompadour:

Illustration from the Codex Manesse by the Grundstockmaler, 1305-1315

jeannepompadour:

Illustration from the Codex Manesse by the Grundstockmaler, 1305-1315

magictransistor:

The Book of Wonders of the Age (St Andrews), 17th or 18th century, Persian manuscript, Iran.

(Source: standrewsrarebooks.wordpress.com)

smcdwer:

Cartoons and doodles in a 17th century manuscript (AM 563 b 4to).

These images really speak for themselves: playful marginal doodles of the anonymous Icelandic scribes who copied out the sagas of Icelanders found in this paper manuscript from c. 1650–99.

In the first photo (and detail in photo 2), we see an elaborate full-page opening of Þorsteins þáttur uxafóts (The Tale of Thorsteinn Ox-foot), complete with beautiful pen flourishes, human figures –– the full figure in the corner wears contemporary 17th-century clothing –– lots of foliage, and even what might be a dragon at the bottom.

This is a fun saga manuscript (other texts include Eiriks saga rauða [Erik the Red’s Saga]) with a lot of doodles, suggesting that the scribes probably enjoyed copying these texts, or at least had a sense of humour about the work they were carrying out.

The full manuscript can be seen at http://handrit.is/en/manuscript/imaging/is/AM04-0563b#0000r-FB.

More faces, doodled in opening initials, can be seen at one of my earlier posts.

mediumaevum:

Horoscope of Prince Iskandar, grandson of Tamerlane, the Turkman Mongol conqueror, by Imad al-Din Mahmud al-Kashi, from The Book of the Birth of Iskandar (ca. 1384) – Source: Wellcome Library, London. 

mediumaevum:

Horoscope of Prince Iskandar, grandson of Tamerlane, the Turkman Mongol conqueror, by Imad al-Din Mahmud al-Kashi, from The Book of the Birth of Iskandar (ca. 1384) – Source: Wellcome Library, London. 

smcdwer:

'Galdrakver': Lbs 143 8vo (1670).

This seventeenth-century Icelandic parchment manuscript has been called Galdrakver, which can be translated as ‘little book (or booklet) of magic’. I thought I would share it since another of my posts on an Icelandic book of codes and runes has been so popular.

This small manuscript has a soft leather binding from the mid-nineteenth century (seen in the last photo). The slim volume was written on animal skin (unusual for the seventeenth century, when manuscripts were more often written on paper); it contains many diagrams, such as the ones seen in these photos, alongside prayers, charms, and related texts. The first 7 folia of the manuscript (not pictured here) contain hymns.

The book was owned at one point by Hannes Finnson, who we know was born 8 May 1739 and died 4 August 1796 at age 57. He was the Bishop of Skálholt in southern Iceland, and some 95 different manuscripts have been associated with him (listed here).

All pages of the manuscript can be seen here, at Handrit.ishttp://handrit.is/en/manuscript/imaging/is/Lbs08-0143#0000r-FB.

mediumaevum:

The Heart Book is regarded as the oldest Danish ballad manuscript. It is a collection of 83 love ballads compiled in the beginning of the 1550’s in the circle of the Court of King Christian III.
Shown above is the beginning of ballad no. 43, Store længsel, du går mig nær (Great Yearning, thou touches me). A later reader – the otherwise unknown Christen Masse – has added some notes, i.a. this pious hope: “gvd ende oc vinde alle mit er lende til en god oc gledelig ende amen” (may god end and turn my misery into a good and happy ending amen). 
We do not know who compiled the ballads and instigated the writing of the Heart Book. All ballads except one – no. 66 – have probably been written by the same hand.
19.5 x 15 cm.

mediumaevum:

The Heart Book is regarded as the oldest Danish ballad manuscript. It is a collection of 83 love ballads compiled in the beginning of the 1550’s in the circle of the Court of King Christian III.

Shown above is the beginning of ballad no. 43, Store længsel, du går mig nær (Great Yearning, thou touches me). A later reader – the otherwise unknown Christen Masse – has added some notes, i.a. this pious hope: “gvd ende oc vinde alle mit er lende til en god oc gledelig ende amen” (may god end and turn my misery into a good and happy ending amen). 

We do not know who compiled the ballads and instigated the writing of the Heart Book. All ballads except one – no. 66 – have probably been written by the same hand.

19.5 x 15 cm.

(Source: wayback-01.kb.dk)

houghtonlib:

Catholic Church. Book of hours : use of Rome : manuscript, [between 1475 and 1500].
MS Lat 161
Houghton Library, Harvard University

houghtonlib:

Catholic Church. Book of hours : use of Rome : manuscript, [between 1475 and 1500].

MS Lat 161

Houghton Library, Harvard University