9 results in English
The History of the Roman Provinces of the Near East
This Arabic manuscript is a history of the Roman provinces of the Near East, with special reference to King Herod the Great and the dynasty he founded. The manuscript lacks numerous pages at the beginning and end. The remaining portion contains the history of Roman Palestine during the first century BC until the destruction of the temple by Roman emperor Titus in 70 AD. The author, title, and date of copying are unknown. The work has been tentatively ascribed to the 17th century. The text is unadorned except for marking ...
Seven Books of the Saturnalia
This codex from the Plutei Collection of the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana in Florence contains the complete text of Saturnalia by the fourth−fifth century Latin author Macrobius. The work takes the form of a series of dialogues among learned men at a fictional banquet at which they discuss antiquities, history, literature, mythology, and other topics. The manuscript may have been copied by a scribe belonging to Bernardo Nuzzi’s circle of copyists in Florence. It organizes the seven original books of Macrobius into five books. The inscription on the recto ...
History of Rome
Historia by Appianus of Alexandria (circa 90−160) is a narrative of the history of Rome from the Republic (circa 509−27 BC) to the second century AD. The present codex, from the Plutei Collection of the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana in Florence, is a translation from the original Greek into Latin by Pier Candido Decembrio (1399−1477), commissioned by Pope Nicholas V (1397−1455). In the colophon (recto of folio 151), the copyist, Carolus Hylarii Fatarius, states that the manuscript originally was intended for the library of King Matthias Corvinus ...
Colonia Agrippina (Present-Day Cologne) Accurately Described in the Year 1571
This bird’s-eye view of Cologne in 1571 is from the collection of cityscapes and broadsheets that once belonged to the Swedish statesman Count Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie (1622−86). It is the earliest accurate map of Cologne, a free city of the Holy Roman Empire. The map was engraved in 1571 by Arnold Mercator (1537−87), son of the great cartographer Gerardus Mercator. This view shows the city stretched out in an arc along the Rhine. In the margins are some of the Roman antiquities found in the ...
The Procurator of Judea
Anatole France, born Jacques Anatole François Thibault (1844−1924), was one of the most famous writers of his time. A journalist, prolific author, and member of the Académie Française from 1896, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1921, but since that time he has been somewhat under-recognized. Written in a very classical style but using irony, his Le Procurateur de Judée (The procurator of Judea) is a short tale intended to provoke reflections on history, memory, and our understanding of the world. It is the story of ...
Rule of the Five Orders of Architecture: Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite taken from Roman Antiquities by Me, Giovanni Battista Montano of Milan
The valuable collection of drawings at the National Library of Spain is noted for the high quality of its Italian drawings spanning the 16th century to 19th century. This architectural drawing, which follows baroque conventions, is a self-portrait of Giovanni Battista Montano (1534−1621), who is shown carrying the compass and ruler of an architect. The allegories of Architecture and Geometry are seen at each side. The drawing was conceived as a frontispiece for Montano’s unpublished treatise, in which he interpreted the works of such architects as Palladio and ...
Contributed by National Library of Spain
Publication of Offices
The Notitia dignitatum is a state paper that documents virtually the whole of the civil and military organization of the Roman Empire as it existed after the reforms of Emperor Diocletian (ruled, 284–305). The manuscript contains chapters on the high state offices, and each chapter is preceded by pages of illustrations depicting the insignia of the officials in these offices and objects characteristic of their functions. The original of the document, probably written around 425 in Rome, is lost, as is a copy from the Carolingian period. The Carolingians ...
Contributed by Bavarian State Library
Great Cameo of France
The Grand Camée de France (Great cameo of France), the largest cameo sculpture to survive from the ancient world, contains 24 engraved figures arrayed in three registers. The general meaning and the political goals of this commissioned work are clear: its aim is to assert the dynastic continuity and legitimacy of the Julio-Claudian emperors of the Roman Empire (the first five emperors: Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, and Nero). The dead are placed in the upper part, while the middle register represents the world of the living. In the lowest register ...
Excerpts from the Decades by Flavius Blondus
Giovanni Marco Cinico from Parma wrote and signed this manuscript for Alfonso II of Aragon, King of Naples, in 1494. The text comprises excerpts from Historiarum ab inclinatione Romanorum imperii decades (Decades of history from the deterioration of the Roman Empire) by Flavius Blondus, the Latinized name of Flavio Biondo (1392–1463). Biondo was an early Renaissance Italian historian and archeologist, who wrote several books on the history of Rome. The excerpts were compiled by Johannes Albinus (also called Giovanni Albino), an enthusiast for the literature of antiquity and a ...
Contributed by Bavarian State Library