Digitizing 300 manuscripts at the Bodleian
Inside the wooden upper-board of one of the Bodleian Library’s 12th century manuscript hides what is perhaps a guilty secret. A mysterious pattern of lines, etched in to its surface.
Continue reading
Oxford, Bodleian Library, Bodleian Library MS. Bodl. 352

All blog articles

Bodleian Library MS. Laud Misc. 135, fol, 1v
Copying De civitate Dei
At a first glance, I must admit, MS. Laud Misc. 120 and 135 do not stand out as the most intriguing medieval manuscripts.
Continue reading
Dombibliothek Hildesheim, J 29, fol. 4r
Hello Mr Easterday! Celebrating Easter in the Medingen prayer books
This yellow bunny might resemble the gold foil chocolate Easter treats that pop up in supermarkets way too early before Easter – but this little fellow was drawn in a prayer book more than five hundred years ago, when nuns from the Cistercian convent Medingen near Lüneburg in Northern Germany were eagerly awaiting Easter day.
Continue reading
Oxford, Bodleian Library, Bodleian Library MS. Lat. liturg. 18, fol. 31v
Savouring the Exultet at Medingen Abbey
One of the most sensual rites of the Christian year is the Exultet at the Easter Vigil. The deacon or priest sings a melody that at first seems familiar, being based on the Preface tone heard often at Mass, but which keeps taking unexpected and exuberant turns that match the uninhibited excitement of its text.
Continue reading
Oxford, Bodleian Library, Bodleian Library MS. Laud Misc. 281
A Date in Paris
‘Hello there – how old are you?’ This must be one of the most common questions in any reader’s mind when they are picking up a medieval manuscript.
Continue reading
Oxford, Bodleian Library, Bodleian Library MS. Bodl. 352
Digitizing 300 manuscripts at the Bodleian
Inside the wooden upper-board of one of the Bodleian Library’s 12th century manuscript hides what is perhaps a guilty secret. A mysterious pattern of lines, etched in to its surface.
Continue reading
Wolfenbüttel, HAB, Cod. Guelf. 1030 Helmst., fol. 1v
“Craft(wo)manship” in Lamspringe
This summer our photo department began digitising manuscripts from one of the six main monastic houses which had made their way into the collections of the Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel: the books from the high medieval Benedictine abbey of Lamspringe near Hildesheim.
Continue reading
Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS. Laud. Misc. 284, fol. 1r
Approaching a digital choir book
Here is a book. It is large and old. Should I open it? Choir Breviary: Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS.
Continue reading
Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS. Laud Gr. 35, fol. 1r
The travels of the Laudian Acts
-- The ‘Laudian Acts’, MS. Laud Gr. 35, is one of the Bodleian Library’s oldest books. It’s one of those that have travelled the furthest.
Continue reading
Herzog August Bibliothek, Cod. Guelf. 630b Helmst., fol. 247r
Towering wisdom, messy manuscripts, and a confused scribe
We often think of medieval codices as elaborate and flawless works of art. Wolfenbüttel, Herzog August Bibliothek, Cod. Guelf. 630b Helmst.
Continue reading
Bodleian Library MS. Laud Misc. 106, fol. 123r
A conservation perspective on imperfect parchment
Natascha Domeisen’s ‘The importance of being (im)perfect’ brings up a key aspect of understanding parchment. This is a subject that has increasingly interested me, as a conservator, in recent years.
Continue reading