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Illuminated Manuscripts - Janice Anderson

Todtri, 1999, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Top edge of the dust wrapper a little rubbed otherwise a very well presented copy.

Illustrated by way of: Colour Photographs;

From the cover: “Illuminated manuscripts are usually strikingly beautiful, numbering amongst the most glorious works of art created during the Middle Ages. The finest were intended as religious texts and were lovingly and reverently produced by scholar monks and nuns in monasteries and convents all over Europe.

These manuscripts — or codices as they are more correctly called — were all written by hand. It was a slow, painstaking business which began with the preparation of the papyrus or animal skin, followed by the inscription of the text, the decoration or embellishment and, finally, the gathering and binding together of the material into book form.

No-one really knows when the art of illuminating manuscripts began. But, as with so many other innovations, the ancient Egyptians were of influence and left many beautiful and skilfully crafted drawings and scrolls, including The Book of the Dead, customarily interred with a person who had died. The Romans too were believed to have produced their own manuscripts, as early as the fifth century AD.

But the true flowering of the illuminated manuscript as an art form did not really begin until the start of the Middle Ages. Most of the work, however, was not new writing. Rather it was the copying of Biblical texts. In fact there was so much religion involved that it has been said that without the codex to spread the word, Christianity would probably never have become more than a minor Middle Eastern sect.”

Size: 12½" x 9". Pictorial boards. 128 pages.