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Type of Item
The Seville Bible
Biblia hispalense (The Seville Bible), also known as the Toletanus Codex, is a manuscript from the first half of the tenth century, in Latin written in lower-case Visigothic script by at least four copyists. The titles also appear in Hebrew, and there are notes in Arabic in the margins. The manuscript consists of booklets of eight sheets each, on parchment, with the text in three columns of 63–65 lines. Included are the texts of the Old and New Testaments, with a preface, prologues, and commentaries by Saint Jerome, Saint ...
The Lincoln Bible
On March 4, 1861, Chief Justice Roger B. Taney administered the oath of office to Abraham Lincoln using a Bible provided by William Thomas Carroll, clerk of the Supreme Court, because Lincoln’s family Bible was packed with other belongings that still were en route to Washington from Springfield, Illinois. In the back of the velvet-covered Bible, along with the seal of the Supreme Court, the volume is annotated: "I, William Thos. Carroll, clerk of the said court do hereby certify that the preceding copy of the Holy Bible is ...
The Codex Gigas (or Devil´s Bible) is a large 13th-century manuscript from Bohemia, one of the historical Czech lands. Renowned for its size and its striking full-page rendition of the devil (found on page 577), it contains a number of parts: the Old and New testaments, two works of Josephus Flavius, Isidore of Seville´s Etymologies, the standard textbook for teaching medicine in the Middle Ages known as Ars medicinae (The art of medicine), the 12th-century Chronica Boëmorum (Chronicle of the Bohemians) of Cosmas of Prague, and a calendar ...
Johann Gutenberg was born in Mainz, Germany, around 1400, the son of an aristocratic family with ties to the local metalworking industry. He lived in Strasbourg (in present-day France) for a time, where he carried out experiments with moveable metallic type made from a mold. By the mid-1450s, he had perfected a system of printing with moveable type that he used to create what became the world’s most famous book, the Latin translation of the Bible (Vulgate), generally known as the Gutenberg Bible. Scholars have thoroughly researched all aspects ...
The Gutenberg Bible is the first great book printed in Western Europe from movable metal type. It is a monument that marks a turning point in the art of bookmaking and in the transition from the Middle Ages to the modern world. The Bible was completed in Mainz, Germany, probably in late 1455. Johann Gutenberg, who lived from about 1397 to 1468, is generally credited with inventing the process of making uniform and interchangeable metal type and developing the materials and methods to make printing possible. This Bible, with its ...
The name commonly given to this work, Biblia pauperum (Paupers' Bible), does not reflect the true importance of this outstanding manuscript, which might be said to contain the summa of the religious knowledge of its time. The work was commissioned, together with another remarkable manuscript of the Rule of Saint Benedict, by Abbot Petrus I of the Benedictine Abbey of Metten in Bavaria and was completed in 1414–15. To carry out his demanding program of manuscript creation, the abbot engaged artists of note, who were well versed in the ...
Bible of the Ratisbon Dominican Order
This manuscript containing the books of the prophets and other biblical texts forms the second volume of a Bible formerly in the possession of the Dominican Order at Ratisbon (Regensburg). It contains extraordinary miniatures by the noted German Renaissance painter Berthold Furtmeyr (active 1460–1501). Furtmeyr and his followers were important contributors to the ancient Ratisbon School of Illumination. An artist of great renown, Furtmeyr illuminated many impressive works, including this manuscript, the Furtmeyr Bible, the Salzburg feast missal in five volumes (all now at the Bavarian State Library in ...
The Sibyls and Prophets Foretelling Christ the Savior
This manuscript, entitled Sibyllae et prophetae de Christo Salvatore vaticinantes (The sibyls and prophets foretelling Christ the Savior), is possibly a product of the workshop of the French illuminator Jean Poyer (circa 1445–1504) of Tours. The sibyls were female seers from the ancient world whose prophecies it was thought foretold the coming of Christ. This work consists of 25 large illuminations: a depiction of Noah's ark and 12 double-page spreads. The left side of each of the double pages depicts one of the sibyls, who is paired on ...
This Biblia pauperum (Paupers' Bible) consists of a series of woodcuts depicting scenes from the Old and New Testaments, which are combined with short explanatory texts printed with metal type. Central scenes from the life of Christ are juxtaposed with two corresponding scenes from the Old Testament accompanied by four prophets, thus dramatizing fulfillment of the Old Testament in the New. With its memorable images, the work might have served as an aid for the instruction of laymen or members of the lower clergy financially unable to purchase a complete ...
Bible of Borso d’Este
The magnificent Bible of Borso d’Este represents the zenith of Ferrarese miniature painting and one of the highpoints of Italian Renaissance manuscript illumination. It was commissioned by Borso d’Este (1413–71), the first duke of Ferrara, who intended it as a demonstration of the splendor of the House of Este, which at the time was competing with Florence and the court of the Medici for international status. The manuscript was completed between 1455 and 1461, the same time that Johann Gutenberg was producing the first printed Bible from ...