Announcements

CFP: Gower, His Contemporaries, and Their Legacy in MSS and Early Printed Books, 1350-1550

The Early Book Society, conjointly with the John Gower Society, is pleased to announce that the fifteenth biennial conference of the Early Book Society and the IV International Congress of the John Gower Society will be hosted by the University of Durham, UK, 9-15 July, 2017. The Congress theme is “Gower, His Contemporaries, and Their Legacy in MSS and Early Printed Books, 1350-1550.” The conference is hosted by Elizabeth Archibald and Corinne Saunders, with co-chairs Martha Driver and Bob Yeager. Abstracts (of 250 words maximum) may address any topic reflecting the Congress theme, which may be interpreted broadly or narrowly. The Congress welcomes proposals that discuss the work of Gower or related authors. Special consideration will be given to proposals that address related issues of manuscript and/or print: MS sources and exemplars for the writing of Gower and his contemporaries more generally (or works that may have been influential upon or created a context for the writings of these authors); ideas of the author as conveyed in manuscripts and printed books (and perhaps beyond as in theatrical production); and the ways in which later translators, editors, scribes and/or printers made sense of the work of Gower and other writers of his time.

Please include your name, the title of your proposed talk, your address and your computer requirements on the proposal. These should be sent electronically no later than 1 November 2016 to gowerebs2017@gmail.com, the conference email address. Paper copies of each abstract or panel proposal should be mailed to Martha Driver, Departments of English and WGS, Pace University, 41 Park Row, NY, New York 10038. Proposals organizing complete sessions of three or four papers are welcome, and should be submitted as noted above. Please contact both organizers with questions (mdriver@pace.edu; rfyeager@hotmail.com), and please also remember to send your proposal with a/v requirements directly to the conference e-mail address at gowerebs2017@gmail.com

 

Rober Thornton Memorial Appeal Update, May 2016

In 2013 the Early Book Society collected signatures from members around the world in support of a memorial appeal to restore Robert Thornton to his place in local memory and the place of his burial, Stonegrave Minster. This has been welcomed by Stonegrave PCC and the Stonegrave Village Committee. It is hoped to collect funding for a memorial plaque honouring Robert Thornton and his contribution to literature in Stonegrave Minster.

A few more donations have been received in the course of the last year, bringing the total to some £1k. Thanks to all those who have contributed.

However, events in the parish have held back plans for pursuing the appeal locally. Last summer an appeal was launched to raise urgently needed funds for Stonegrave Minster roof and this absorbed local funds and attention. More seriously, the incumbent, Susan Bond, who has been very supportive, is taking early retirement this summer which will leave the parish in an ‘inter-regnum’ for at least six months, during which time all decisions are shelved.

In the meantime, I should welcome any ideas for taking the appeal further into Thornton-aware academic circles, any offers of contacts etc and of course the appeal remains open. (RTStonegrave@yahoo.com)

The funds collected so far are in a separate and secure bank account. If any donors feel that in the circumstances they would like their money back, just ask Rosalind Field (rosfield98@gmail.com)

 

Manuscripts in the Making: Art and Science:
8-10 December 2016 Cambridge, UK

An international conference organised by The Fitzwilliam Museum
in association with the Departments of Chemistry and History of Art,
University of Cambridge (UK)

with support from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation

and the Association for Manuscripts and Archives in Research Collections

The conference will accompany the Fitzwilliam Museum's bicentenary exhibition 'COLOUR: The Art and Science of Illuminated Manuscripts' (30 July - 30 December 2016).

This interdisciplinary conference will aim to break new ground in integrating recent advances in the art historical and technical analyses of illuminated manuscripts with research in social and intellectual history. While Western illuminated manuscripts from the 6th to the 16th centuries will form a major focus of discussion, the conference will also include papers on Byzantine, Islamic and Pre-Columbian material. For more information including the list of speakers and conference programme, and to register for the conference, please visit: http://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/colour/conference.

 

Conference and Exhibits:
Beyond Words: Illuminated Manuscripts from Boston Collections

CHURCH & CLOISTER (Houghton Library: Sept. 12 – Dec. 10, 2016)
PLEASURE & PIETY (McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College: Sept. 12 – Dec. 11, 2016)
ITALIAN RENAISSANCE BOOKS (Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum: Sept. 22, 2016 – Jan. 16, 2017)

An international conference linked to the exhibition with one day at each of the three venues will take place on Nov. 3–5, 2016. The collections in the Boston area constitute one of the most important ensembles of illuminated manuscript material anywhere in North America, yet they remain, in large measure, virtually unknown to scholars and the wider public alike. Conceived by Jeffrey F. Hamburger, Kuno Francke Professor of German Art & Culture at Harvard, in 2000, his first year at the university, the exhibition could not have been prepared and organized without the collaboration of a team of local manuscript experts with whom he searched the stacks and stores of libraries and museums on both sides of the Charles River for buried treasures of illumination. Find ful details here.

 

CFP: After Chichele: Intellectual and Cultural Dynamics of the English Church, 1443 to 1517
St. Anne’s College, Oxford, 28-30 June 2017

An international conference organised by the Faculty of English, University of Oxford, this event builds on the success of the 2009 Oxford conference, After Arundel: Religious Writing in Fifteenth-Century England, which resulted in a book of essays (ed. by Vincent Gillespie and Kantik Ghosh) that vigorously interrogated the nature of religious and intellectual culture in England in the long fifteenth century. After Chichele adopts a similar investigative and interdisciplinary approach. The period has been chosen precisely because the inner workings of English intellectual and religious life during these years have proved challengingly resistant to the formation of grand critical narratives. What are the chief currents driving the intellectual and cultural life of the church in England during this period? What happened to intellectual questioning during the period, and where did the Church’s cultural life express itself most vividly? What significant parochial, regional, national and international influences were brought to bear on English literate practices? In order to address these questions, the conference will adopt an interdisciplinary focus, inviting contributions from historians, literary scholars, and scholars working on the theology, ecclesiastical history, music and art of the period, and it is expected that a wide range of literary and cultural artefacts will be considered, from single-authored works to manuscript compilations, from translations to original works, and from liturgy to art and architecture, with no constraints as to the conference’s likely outcomes and conclusions. It is intended that the conference should generate a volume of essays similar to After Arundel in scope, ambition and quality.

Plenary speakers: David Carlson, Mary Erler, Sheila Lindenbaum, Julian Luxford, David Rundle, Cathy Shrank.

Possible topics for discussion: Religious writing and the English Church; the emergence of humanism and the fate of scholasticism; literature and the law; cultural and ecclesiastical patronage; developments in art and architecture; the liturgical life of the Church; the impact of the international book trade and of print; palaeography and codicology; the Church’s role in education, colleges and chantries; the impact of travel and pilgrimage.

Please send 500 word abstracts (for proposed 20-minute papers) by Friday, 12th August 2016 to Vincent Gillespie, Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford OX2 6QA (vincent.gillespie@ell.ox.ac.uk).

 

Beinecke acquires Egge's collection
Otto F. Ege, an Ohio-based scholar and book dealer, made a controversial practice of dismantling medieval and Renaissance manuscripts and selling the individual leaves for profit during the first half of the last century.

Ege (pronounced EGG-ee) argued that his book-breaking served a noble purpose by providing people access to medieval relics that they otherwise would never be able to afford. Scholars lament the damage he did to numerous significant manuscripts.

When he died in 1951, Ege left to his family a collection of full manuscripts and manuscript fragments. Yale’s Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library recently acquired Ege’s collection, adding dozens of manuscript fragments and more than 50 complete manuscripts to the library’s rich collection of medieval material.

“This remarkable collection will provide students and scholars with an unprecedented opportunity to study both a wide variety of hundreds of previously unknown manuscripts and fragments, as well as the complex man who collected them,” says Raymond Clemens, curator of the library’s Collection of Early Books and Manuscripts.

Find full story and manuscript images here.

 

The Sherry L. Reames Graduate Student Travel Award for Hagiographical Studies
The Hagiography Society is pleased to invite applications for the Sherry L. Reames Graduate Student Travel Award for Hagiographical Studies. Named in honor of the beloved founder and long-time leader of the Society, the award provides $300 to be used toward travel to present at the International Congress on Medieval Studies, held annually at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, MI.

Eligibility: Students enrolled in a graduate program (anywhere in the world) are eligible to apply if their paper, on a topic involving hagiography, has been accepted for inclusion in the program of the International Congress on Medieval Studies in Kalamazoo, MI, at the time of application. Preference may be given to Hagiography Society members. For complete information on how to apply, please visit http://www.hagiographysociety.org/ and click on "Awards."

 

Scots scriever sought
A scriever is being sought, in what is a first for Scotland, to support the use of the Scots language across the country.

It is the result of a joint initiative between the National Library of Scotland and Creative Scotland. Applications open today for the role which is designed to produce original creative work in Scots, its variants and dialects, across any art-form, as well as raising awareness, appreciation and use of Scots across the country and amongst all parts of the population.

The successful candidate will be awarded a two-year residency, based at the National Library with funding from Creative Scotland.

This was announced today at the National Library by Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Europe and External Affairs. She said: “The Scottish Government’s ambition is for the Scots language to be recognised, valued and used in Scottish public and community life. The Scots language is an essential part of Scotland’s distinctive culture and heritage, and the Scottish Government takes seriously the promotion of the Scots language throughout Scotland in all its regional and local variants.”

Creative Scotland also published its first Scots language policy at the event which underlines the organisation’s commitment to supporting the language through its own work and the work it funds across the arts, screen and creative industries.

The Scots scriever role will involve a high level of public engagement and the chosen applicant will work closely with the Scots collections at the Library.

National Librarian, Dr John Scally said: “We are delighted to be working with Creative Scotland in offering this exciting new writing role, as part of our continuing commitment to the Scots language. Our collections are rich in Scots and include some of the earliest examples of written Scots through to writers such as Robert Burns, Hugh MacDiarmid and, in more recent times, Irvine Welsh.”

The author James Robertson whose novels contain prominent use of Scots and who has also translated a number of books for children and young people into Scots welcomed both the scriever role and Creative Scotland’s new policy.

He said the initiative recognises “Scots both as a part of the identity and daily life of hundreds of thousands of people, and as a special national cultural asset. I hope this policy encourages creative individuals and organisations throughout the land to engage with Scots in all kinds of ways. This is not about looking back, whatever the language’s past achievements: it is about ensuring that Scots goes forward to be seen and heard in the future.”

 

Story in the New York Times:
"Medicine's Hidden Roots in an Ancient Manuscript"

A story of palimpsests, and scattered leaves, and the recovery and digitization of the oldest known copy of Galen's "On the Mixtures and Powers of Simple Drugs": read it here.

 

EBS member James Carley discovers key book in Henry VIII's break with Rome
James Carley, EBS member and author of an article in the current issue of JEBS, has identified a book in the library at Lanhydrock as book number 282 in the inventory of Henry VIII's library. The book contains a summary of the theories of William of Ockham, which were central to the king's arguing for an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon, which led, ultimately, to his breaking with Rome. Read the whole story in the Guardian here.

 

Recataloguing of all Caxton imprints at the Morgan Library & Museum
All Caxton imprints at the Morgan Library & Museum are now fully recatalogued with full copy-specific descriptions, including physical descriptions, provenance, and binding. Search CORSAIR by the keywords PMLinc Caxton to retrieve the new descriptions.

 

Private Lives of Print: The use and abuse of books 1450-1500 Online exhibition: https://exhibitions.lib.cam.ac.uk/incunabula/
The development of the printing press in Mainz in the 1450s was immediately recognized as a pivotal moment by contemporaries. Its impact was monumental, heralding a communication revolution akin to the birth of the internet and leading to the slow but inevitable decline of the manuscript as the dominant means of transmission. Fundamental to our understanding of the reception of this seismic event is the evidence left within books themselves. Over the past twenty-five years researchers have focussed increasingly on the marks left by early readers, as a means of assessing how books were used, how and where they moved, their trade, impact and audience.

This exhibition celebrates the conclusion of a five-year project, generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, to catalogue Cambridge University Library’s world-class collection of incunabula, books printed before 1501. It draws on the remarkable body of information amassed during the project about how the earliest printed books were received during the first hundred years of the press. Annotations, provenance, bindings and decoration provide rare and unexpected insights into the use and abuse of incunabula, and into the private lives of both printed books and their owners.

 

John Lydgate linked to Suffolk church graffiti
From The Guardian: The discovery of a signature has linked graffiti on the walls of a Suffolk church to a 15th Century poet.

The Norfolk Medieval Graffiti Survey has been studying inscriptions at St Mary's Church, Lidgate, near Haverhill.

They are "90%" sure a newly-discovered graffito was made by poet John Lydgate (c 1370-1451), who had been vicar there.

Matthew Champion, from the project, said: "He was known for his witty puns and many of these are of that kind."

Lydgate, who became a monk in Bury St Edmunds and wrote The Lives of St Edmund and Fremund, is regarded as one of the most important and prolific medieval English writers with over 150,000 lines of verse attributed to him. Read the rest of the Guardian article ...

 

Shakespeare Folio Discovered in France
First folios of Shakespeare’s plays are among the world’s rarest books, intensely scrutinized by scholars for what their sometimes-minute variations — each copy is different — reveal about the playwright’s intentions. Now a previously unknown folio has surfaced at a small library in northern France, bringing the world’s known total of surviving first folios to 233. Read the rest of the New York Times article ...

 

Dan Mosser's updated catalogue of pre-1500 Chaucer MSS and incunables now online
This revised, updated, and corrected edition of Daniel W. Mosser’s A Digital Catalogue of the pre-1500 Manuscripts and Incunables of the Canterbury Tales contains descriptions of the eighty-four fifteenth-century manuscripts of the Canterbury Tales and of the individual copies of the four incunable editions. Accompanying articles discuss lost manuscripts and individual scribes. Find the catalogue here: http://www.mossercatalogue.net/

This edition omits the hundreds of images published on the Scholarly Digital Editions’ 2010 publication on CD-ROM, making it possible to provide the Catalogue free of charge on the Web. Verse items are hyperlinked to records in the Digital Index of Middle English Verse and, where images are available for watermarks to the Thomas L. Gravell Watermark Archive.

 

Vernon and Simeon Manuscripts now both fully Digitised
Often cited by medieval English manuscripts scholars, but rarely reproduced, now the Simeon manuscript (British Library, Addit. MS 22283) is available in full on the British Library Digitised Manuscripts site. On the manuscript and research in progress on it see Wendy Scase's guest blog entry, 'Beyond the Bling', 10 June 2014, on the British Library Medieval Manuscripts blog and the Simeon Manuscript Project website at the University of Birmingham. Digitisation of Simeon follows the recent publication on DVD of The Vernon Manuscript: A Facsimile Edition of Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Eng. poet.a.1, ed. by Wendy Scase (Oxford: Bodleian Digital Texts, 2012), meaning that the extraordinary Vernon-Simeon pair are now fully available for the first time.

 

New resource: Penn in Hand: Selected Manuscripts
From the site (here): The site offers bibliographic information and digital facsimiles for selected collections of manuscript codices, texts, documents, papers, and leaves held by Penn's Rare Book & Manuscript Library as well as those privately owned by Lawrence J. Schoenberg (C'53, WG'56). Penn holds over 2,000 Western manuscripts produced before the 19th century; medieval and Renaissance manuscripts comprise approximately 900 items, the earliest dating from 1000 A.D. Its holdings of Indic manuscripts is the largest in the Western hemisphere with more than 3,000 items. The Lawrence J. Schoenberg Collection emphasizes secular topics, especially science and mathematics, and includes tablets from the 21st to 18th centuries B.C.

 

Now Available: Blackburn's 'Worthy Citizen': The Philanthropic Legacy of R.E. Hart
by Cynthia Johnston, Sarah J. Biggs

From the publisher's website (here): The exceptionally fine colour images in this catalogue are selections from the R.E. Hart Collection held by the Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery. Seven medieval manuscripts and three incunables from the Collection were exhibited at Senate House Library in November of 2013.

This project, Blackburn's 'Worthy Citizen': The Philanthropic Legacy of R.E. Hart, was made possible by a grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council, and was generously supported by the Institute of English Studies at the School of Advanced Study, University of London; Winchester University; the Bibliographical Society; the Economic History Society; and the Blackburn Museum itself. Graduate students from the Institute of English Studies, The Courtauld Institute of Art, and Cambridge and Winchester Universities have worked with curators and experts from a wide range of academic disciplines to produce the exhibition and accompanying catalogue.

See the blog about the Hart collection here: http://blackhartbooks.wordpress.com/about/

 

Late Medieval English Scribes website launched
Linne Mooney, Estelle Stubbs, and Simon Horobin have now launched the Late Medieval English Scribes website at http://www.medievalscribes.com/.

Late Medieval English Scribes is an online catalogue of all scribal hands (identified or unidentified) which appear in the manuscripts of the English writings of five major Middle English authors: Geoffrey Chaucer, John Gower, John Trevisa, William Langland and Thomas Hoccleve.

 

Harlaxton Medieval Studies Index now available
Over the course of the twenty-five years of its existence, the Harlaxton Medieval Symposium has published proceedings of its annual gatherings containing some 462 articles by 293 authors extending over 7682 pages. To mark the symposium’s quarter-century, the steering committee has now commissioned a cumulative index covering the first twenty-five volumes of the Harlaxton Medieval Studies, most of which were originally published without an index.

The newly-published index volume which runs to an impressive 841 pages

  • is comprehensive for names of places and individuals
  • provides references to a wide range of subjects
  • includes a full index of the manuscripts and documentary sources cited
  • includes a full alphabetical list of authors and essays.

Now available from:

Shaun Tyas Publishing
1 High Street
Donington
Lincolnshire
PE11 4TA
United Kingdom

T: + 44 (0)1775 821 542
E: pwatkins@pwatkinspublishing.fsnet.co.uk

The cost is £35.00 (post free for UK orders)

 

New Blog from St Andrews: Echoes from the Vault
In an age where books have become an increasingly rare item to find in libraries, and as libraries themselves are experiencing their largest sea-change since electronic cataloguing was introduced, special collection departments are slowly becoming what defines one library from another.

Echoes from the Vault is the official blog of the Rare Books Collection of the University of St Andrews. Here you can find posts about unique or exciting finds amongst the vaults in our day-to-day work, bringing to light voices that have remained quiet for many years. This blog will also feature news and events happening within the Special Collections Department and the University Library.

The Rare Books Collection of the University of St Andrews is estimated at over 200,000 volumes, and almost half of these have not been catalogued online, with only a portion of it having been recorded in the old Page Catalogue and reported to the English Short Title Catalogue (ESTC) and other bibliographies. Most of the unique items are not completely unknown to previous and existing Special Collections staff, they have just lain dormant for centuries. It is our hope that we can reawaken the potential of these books as research and educational resources by getting them in the hands of students, staff and researchers.

As part of its launch, Echoes from the Vault is showcasing bookbindings in St Andrews' collection with a special feature "52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings," adding photos and discussion of one new fantastic binding each week. Follow the blog here: http://standrewsrarebooks.wordpress.com/.

 

Opuscula: Short Texts of the Middle Ages and Renaissance (OSTMAR)
The Editorial Board of Opuscula: Short Texts of the Middle Ages and Renaissance (OSTMAR) is pleased to announce the official launch of its website: http://opuscula.usask.ca. We seek single-witness editions of Medieval and Renaissance texts under 6,000 words accompanied by a brief introduction (1000-1500 words) and translation. We invite submission of a broad range of pre-modern texts including but not limited to literary and philosophical works, letters, charters, court documents, and notebooks. Texts should be previously unedited and the edition must represent a discrete text in its entirety.

For more information or to view a sample edition, go to opuscula.usask.ca or write Frank Klaassen, General Editor at editor@opuscula.usask.ca.

OSTMAR is an on-line and open-access journal published by Classical, Medieval, and Renaissance Studies at the University of Saskatchewan under a creative commons license. All submissions are subject to a double-blind peer review and must be accompanied by readable digital facsimiles of the original documents.

 

Announcing a new series from Ashgate Publishing Company:
Material Readings in Early Modern Culture

Series Editors:
James Daybell, University of Plymouth; and Adam Smyth, Birkbeck College, University of London
This series provides a forum for studies that consider the material forms of texts as part of an investigation into early modern culture. The editors invite proposals of a multi- or interdisciplinary nature, and particularly welcome proposals that combine archival research with an attention to the theoretical models that might illuminate the reading, writing, and making of texts, as well as projects that take innovative approaches to the study of material texts, both in terms the kinds of primary materials under investigation, and in terms of methodologies. What are the questions that have yet be to asked about writing in its various possible embodied forms? Are there varieties of materiality that are critically neglected? How does form mediate and negotiate content? In what ways do the physical features of texts inform how they are read, interpreted and situated? Consideration will be given to both monographs and collections of essays.

    The range of topics covered in this series includes, but is not limited to:
  • History of the book, publishing, the book trade, printing, typography (layout, type, typeface, blank/white space, paratextual apparatus)
  • Technologies of the written word: ink, paper, watermarks, pens, presses
  • Surprising or neglected material forms of writing
  • Print culture
  • Manuscript studies
  • Social space, context, location of writing
  • Social signs, cues, codes imbued within the material forms of texts
  • Ownership and the social practices of reading: marginalia, libraries, environments of reading and reception
  • Codicology, palaeography and critical bibliography
  • Production, transmission, distribution and circulation
  • Archiving and the archaeology of knowledge
  • Orality and oral culture
  • The material text as object or thing

Proposals should take the form of either 1) a preliminary letter of inquiry, briefly describing the project; or 2) a formal prospectus including: abstract, brief statement of your critical methodology, table of contents, sample chapter, estimate of length, estimate of the number and type of illustrations to be included, and a c.v. Please send a copy of either type of proposal to each of the two series editors and to the publisher: Dr James Daybell, james.daybell@plymouth.ac.uk; Dr Adam Smyth, adam.smyth@bbk.ac.uk; Erika Gaffney, Publisher, egaffney@ashgate.com.

 

Harry Ransom Center's Medieval and Early Modern Manuscripts Collection Now Accessible Online

AUSTIN, Texas --The Harry Ransom Center, a humanities research library and museum at The University of Texas at Austin, has introduced an online database for its medieval and early modern manuscripts collection. The database includes more than 7,000 digital images and can be accessed here

http://research.hrc.utexas.edu/pubmnem/

The medieval and early modern manuscripts collection contains 215 items dating from the 11th to the 17th centuries. It comprises items from various collections, including those of George Atherton Aitken, W. H. Crain, Carlton Lake, Edward A. Parsons, Sir Thomas Phillipps, Walter Emile Van Wijk, Evelyn Waugh, John Henry Wrenn and others.

The Ransom Center is digitizing all of the collection items, which will be added to the database as they are completed. At present, digital images are available for 27 of the items for a total of 7,288 pages.

The database contains item-level descriptions for all 215 items, and the collection is searchable by keyword and any combination of the following categories: name, country of origin, century, language, format (such as charters or diaries), subject and physical features (such as musical notation or wax seals).

The medieval and early modern manuscripts collection is a rich resource for many areas of research. Scholars may use the collection to trace typographical developments in printing, compare different versions of the same text or examine a manuscript's composition, decoration and binding to study the history of the book. The collection may also be valuable for those studying the history of liturgy and music.

"The new database for the Ransom Center's medieval and early modern manuscripts collection is a wonderful resource for students and teachers here at the university and for scholars everywhere," said Marjorie Curry Woods, professor of English and comparative literature at The University of Texas at Austin. "The detailed descriptions will help researchers working on individual manuscripts, provide a model for students learning palaeography and codicology, and allow scholars elsewhere to explore possible connections between the Ransom Center's manuscripts and those in other collections.

"The complete digitized versions of manuscripts are invaluable. Manuscripts that are now too fragile to be handled are still available for research and teaching, and those that have small, difficult-to-read glosses and marginalia now can be deciphered with relative ease. In addition, digitized manuscripts can be projected for class presentations and can be consulted by scholars working collaboratively but in different locations. Access to the Ransom Center's valuable early holdings is increased exponentially while at the same time reducing wear and tear on the manuscripts themselves."

The collection is particularly strong in humanistic manuscripts, vernacular literature and religious documents. Other represented subjects include alchemy, architecture, astronomy, botany, cartography, classical literature, diplomacy, drama, genealogy, government, heraldry, history, kings and rulers, law, mathematics, medicine, monasticism and religious orders, music, philosophy, poetry, science and war.

The earliest item in the collection is the Tegernsee Miscellany manuscript, an 11th-century Austrian codex of various texts compiled by Abbot Ellinger of Tegernsee. Other highlights include 11 Books of Hours, most notably the "Belleville Hours," and a 15th-century German ferial psalter and hymnal, significant because of its possible stylistic relationship to the Gutenberg Bible and early printed psalters.

The collection contains classical texts, including copies of works by Cicero, Horace, Ovid and Plato, and medieval literary works by Geoffrey Chaucer, Dante and Petrarch.

The historical documents in the collection represent numerous European monarchs, such as Henry VIII of England, Louis XIII of France and Philip III of Spain. Notable historical figures represented in the collection include Oliver Cromwell, Martin Luther, John Milton, Sir Isaac Newton, Abraham Ortelius and Sir Walter Raleigh. Document types include charters, commonplace books, contracts, correspondence, decrees, deeds, diaries, government records, indentures, letters patent, minutes, notarial documents, notes, papal bulls, petitions, pontificals, receipts, reports, speeches and writs.

The manuscripts represent numerous countries and historical regions, including Austria, Bohemia, Bolivia, Byzantium, England, Flanders, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Scotland, Spain and the United States. The represented languages include Dutch, English, Flemish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Latin, Middle English, Old English and Spanish.

Other holdings at the Ransom Center that contain early manuscripts include the George Atherton Aitken, Eastern manuscripts, clay tablets and cones, Kraus maps, Lanza-Acosta Bolivian, Arthur Livingston, papyri, Pforzheimer, Ranuzzi, Shelley family and the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary collections.

High-resolution press images from the collection are available.

 

"Performing Medieval Narrative Today: A Video Showcase"
This website (http://euterpe.bobst.nyu.edu /mednar/), produced through the Studio for Digital Projects and Research at New York University, offers resources for scholars, teachers, students, and performers to explore the performance of medieval narrative. Our purpose is to see how medieval stories can be brought to life in performance for modern audiences, and how performance can be used to teach medieval literature in the classroom. We hope as well to promote a better understanding of ways in which medieval narratives may have been performed for their original audiences.


Video clips constitute the primary resource on the website. The clips feature a variety of actors, storytellers, singers, musicians, mimes, puppeteers, and dancers, among them professionals, teachers, and students. They perform scenes drawn from a range of medieval narrative genres, including epics, romances, lais, tales, fabliaux, and others. Some performances of narratives from analogous traditions (such as the Egyptian Hilali epic) are also represented.


In the future, we plan to expand the site's holdings and add other resources to the site, including further information bearing on pedagogical uses of performance, and videoed interviews with performers and with faculty and students who work with performance.


We hope you will visit, and use, the website. We welcome your feedback, which may be sent to perf-med-narr@forums.nyu.edu

Timmie (E.B.) Vitz, New York University ­ ebv1@nyu.edu
Marilyn Lawrence, New York University ­ lawrence@alumni.princeton. edu
Project Directors

 

Send announcements to Martha Rust at martha.rust@nyu.edu
Last updated 8/11/2016