For two millennia the Bible has inspired the creation of art. Within this legacy of remarkable art and beauty, illuminated biblical manuscripts offer some of the best evidence for our understanding of early Christian painting and artistic interpretations of the Bible. This beautiful and important new book, compiled and written by two internationally renowned experts, immerses the reader in the world of illuminated manuscripts of the Bible. Through its pictures we are transported across 1,000 years of history, passing chronologically through many of the major centres of the Christian world. Starting in Constantinople in the East, the journey moves on to Lindisfarne in the North, to imperial Aachen, back to Canterbury, then to Carolingian Tours in western France. Later we view some of the riches of Winchester, Mozarabic Spain, Crusader Jerusalem, the Meuse valley, northern Iraq, Paris, London, Bologna, Naples, Bulgaria, the Low Countries, Rome and Persia. Our journey ends in Gondar, the capital of imperial Ethiopia. Fortyfive remarkable books - each a treasure in its own right - provide our itinerary through time and across continents. Together they enable us to explore and revel in the extraordinary art and beauty of illuminated biblical manuscripts, some of the finest but least-known paintings from the Middle Ages.
Author: Richard Hayman
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Release Date: 2017-09-21
Illuminated manuscripts are among the most beautiful, precious and mysterious works of Western art. Before the printing press was invented, books were produced by hand and their illustration using brightly coloured pigments and gold embellishments was a labour of love and an act of piety in itself. The results are stunning. The works emanating from the scriptoria of monasteries were mainly religious texts, including illuminated bibles, psalters, and works for private devotion known as books of hours. Illuminated Manuscripts describes the origin and history of illumination in the Middle Ages, covering the artists and their techniques, and the patrons who commissioned them. It explains the subject matter found in medieval works, such as saints and Bible stories and the use of ornamental flourishes, and is illustrated with many fine examples of the genre including the Lindisfarne Gospels and the Book of Kells.
Author: Robert E. McNally
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
Release Date: 2005-07-01
In the first part of this intriguing study, McNally treats the complex social, intellectual, and theological factors that affected biblical interpretation in the early medieval period. In the second part he provides a classified bibliography of commentaries from the period.
Before the printing press introduced the notion of mass production to the Renaissance world, the written word was one of spiritual significance and unfathomable mystique. Sacred texts predominated and books were acceptable means of procuring religious thought. As harbinger of the book, the Illuminated Manuscript maintains a well-respected place in literary and artistic history, as well as in the record of human progress and creativity. Museograph's Illuminated Manuscripts gives rare scholarly attention to these Judeo-Christian, Islamic, and secular masterpieces. From the Byzantine Period to the Renaissance, it outlines the evolution of this textual art form. Religious themes that were common to illuminated texts for over one thousand years became progressively outnumbered as literacy spread beyond the religious community. Books were slowly evolving from status symbols to learning tools. The decorative content of illuminations also advanced through history's course. Virtually without border in the Byzantine Period, manuscripts resonated and simplicity befitting religious ceremonies and houses of worship. By the Romanesque Period, the appearance of the Bestiary indicated that a shift was on the horizon. The Winchester border, with its heavy frame and ornate gold bars, was wild with foliage and whimsical in its combination of human and bestial figures. Illuminated design gone organic! Illuminated Manuscripts is a sensory treasure of image and word. Subjects within this monograph embody a rich interdisciplinary history and continue to grow alongside man as his understanding of what is beautiful deepens and his ability to express it is actualized.
Author: Christopher De Hamel
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Release Date: 1997-09-26
Medieval manuscripts are counted among the greatest glories of Western civilization. With their gold and painted decoration and their charming miniatures, they have always had immense appeal, and images from them can be seen everywhere - from greeting cards and wrapping paper to expensive facsimiles. This entertaining and authoritative book is the first to provide a general introduction to the whole subject of the making of books from the Dark Ages to the invention of printing and beyond. Christopher de Hamel vividly describes the widely different circumstances in which manuscripts were created, from the earliest monastic Gospel Books to university textbooks, secular romances, Books of Hours and classical texts for humanist bibliophiles. As the story unfolds the wonderful variety of manuscripts and their illumination is revealed, and many fundamental questions are answered - who wrote the books, what texts they contained, who read them, how they were made and what purposes they served. Illuminated manuscripts have alway been highly valued, and among them are some of the world's great masterpieces of art. With its lively narrative and many new and superb illustrations, this new edition of a much-praised book provides the perfect introduction to a large and fascinating subject.
When one thinks of women in the Middle Ages, the images that often come to mind are those of damsels in distress, mystics in convents, female laborers in the field, and even women of ill repute. In reality, however, medieval conceptions of womanhood were multifaceted, and women’s roles were varied and nuanced. Female stereotypes existed in the medieval world, but so too did women of power and influence. The pages of illuminated manuscripts reveal to us the many facets of medieval womanhood and slices of medieval life—from preoccupations with biblical heroines and saints to courtship, childbirth, and motherhood. While men dominated artistic production, this volume demonstrates the ways in which female artists, authors, and patrons were instrumental in the creation of illuminated manuscripts. Featuring over one hundred illuminations depicting medieval women from England to Ethiopia, this book provides a lively and accessible introduction to the lives of women in the medieval world.
As the end of the first millennium drew near - a date when many expected the end of the world - the beleaguered Christian communities of Spain, still dominated by Islam, were experiencing a profound spiritual crisis. To make sense of their predicament, they turned to the Revelation of St John the Divine, in particular the commentary written three centuries before by the monk Beatus of Liebana, making of their illuminated manuscripts an art form of extraordinary expressive power. More than twenty of these manuscripts survive, dating from between 900 and 1100, all illuminated in a colorful style known as Mozarabic - a combination of Carolingian, Islamic, Byzantine and Visigothic art. The Beatus manuscripts are the largest, but not the only, body of such work; there are Bibles and a small number of other religious texts. All, however, share the same apocalyptic vision. Cut off from the rest of Europe and obsessed by the imminence of God's judgement, these artists invented a world peopled by angelic warriors, demons and beasts, exotic birds and serpents and luxuriant trees. This bizarre, psychologically fascinating world is revealed here in superb colour plates and finely detailed black and white illustrations. Mireille Mentre explores the context of the illuminations and explains their dense theological meaning without dissipating their magic.
The period from 1400 to 1550 was a glorious era for European manuscript painting. Even after Gutenberg's invention of movable-type printing in around 1450, the demand for luxurious illuminated manuscripts continued well into the 16th century, with the leading studios in Italy, France and Flanders producing some of the finest works of art of the period. The British Library's fine collection of 15th- and 16th-century manuscripts contains some of the outstanding surviving works from Flanders. Examples from the last great epoch of Flemish illumination, c.1475-1550, include the work of most of the major illuminators active after 1470 and an extensive holding of manuscript paintings by Simon Bening, one of the great Flemish book painters. This book contains over 140 reproductions of manuscript paintings from this rich tradition, selected and with an introduction by one of the British Library's expert curators, Scot McKendrick. The book offers an unparalleled opportunity to see a wide range of examples from these precious manuscripts, many of which will never have been seen before. The book will have great visual appeal for those unfamiliar with the subject, as well as providing an excellent source of reference to specialists.
Divided chronologically and by themed chapters, The Middle Ages is a fascinating, yet concise history of this extraordinary time of human endeavour, covering subjects such as religion, the Crusades, employment and technology. It also looks at the impact that the Middle Ages had outside Europe, in countries such as Japan, China, and India. Beautifully illustrated, this book also tells the stories of individuals who lived through this period, from serfs to royalty and includes key figures like Joan of Arc, Marco Polo, Geoffrey Chaucer, El Cid and Saladin. The book is enriched by the inclusion of some 15 facsimile documents that offer a unique insight into this era in history.
Of all the Old Testament books, the Book of Job remains acutely contemporary today. Written between the 6th and 3rd c. B.C., it deals with subjects such as the presence of evil in the world, the misery, the quest for justice, the faith, and the behavior of people when they face sudden twists and turns of life. It seems that the ancient text had been illustrated since the Early Christian period because of its fascinating novel-like narrative style. In her own study on the Book of Job, Stella Papadaki-Oekland probes into all the Byzantine illuminated manuscripts of the illustrated Greek text. The number of miniature illustrations included in these fifteen manuscripts, dating from the 9th to the 16th century, comes to more than 1800 of which 2/3 of the about 380 illustrated herein are previously unpublished manuscript images.The book is an unabridged version with minor changes of Papadaki-Oekland's Inaugural Dissertation at Heidelberg University (1979) and is published posthumously by her daughters, Helen-Aina and Astrid-Zoe -in homage to Byzantine Art. The fifteen Byzantine Illuminated Manuscript Illustrations of the Book of Job studied, illustrated and discussed are: Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Rome: cod. Vat. gr. 749; cod. Vat. gr. 751; cod. Vat. gr. 1231 and cod. Vat. Pal. gr.230 - The Monastery of St. John the Theologian, Isle of Patmos: cod. Patmos 171 - Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, Venezia: cod. Marc. gr. 538 - Monastery of St. Catherine, Sinai, Egypt: cod. Siena 3 - Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem and All Palestine, Jerusalem: MS. Taphou 5 - Monastery of Vatopedi, Mount Athos: Vatopedi 590 - Monastery Magisti (Great) Lavra, Mount Athos: Lavra B100 - Byzantine and Christian Museum, Athens: MS. 62 - Bodleian Library, Oxford: MS. Barocci 201 and MS. Laud gr. 86 - Bibliothegue nationale de France, Paris: MS. gr. 134 and MS. gr. 135 - National Library of Russia, St. Petersburg: MS gr. 382 (former folio of Taphou 5) The study of the Septuagint Book of Job in Byzantine tradition include comparative analysis of the interrelationship of the individual miniature cycles, their general arrangement and artistic character, the origin and development as well as its contents and significance in the literary and popular tradition. Finally, the six Comparative Tables presented at the end of the volume provide the reader for the first time a complete cross reference interrelationship between the individual 1800 images of the 15 manuscripts and Sir Lancelot C. L. Brenton's English translation of the Septuagint Book of Job passages. Further examples of images discussed herein of early Christian Job representations include: Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Rome, MS.Reg.gr.1 - known as the Bible of Queen Christina of Sweden; Bibliotheque nationale de France, Paris, MS gr. 510, MS syr. 341-the Syriac Bible and MS.gr. 923- Sacra Parallela; Biblioteca Nazionale Vittorio Emanuele III, Naples, Coptic MS IB 18, Catacomb of the Via Latina, Rome and the Sarcophagus of Junius Bassus, Basilica di San Pietro, Rome. Furthermore, the book is of invaluable importance due to its methodological approach. As the leading art historian Hans Belting points out, the study of Stella Papadaki-Oekland calls in question Kurt Weitzmann's rigid theory about the process of the Byzantine illuminated manuscripts production. There's no doubt that, even though it was written a lot of years ago, this remains the most complete and comprehensive study about the Book of Job in Byzantine art
Author: Christopher De Hamel
Publisher: Studies in Medieval and Early
Release Date: 2017-12-06
No manuscript is an island. We may consider medieval illumination as a single characteristic of the whole Middle Ages, but every manuscript is part of the evolving history of European art and culture, and every one belongs to a place and period. The Sandra Hindman Collection is a remarkable journey through time and location. Every illuminated cutting described here is a microcosm of a larger history. A sublime initial from a twelfth-century Bible from France is part of a setting which includes Chartres Cathedral, the Crusades and Abelard; two late thirteenth-century narrative miniatures of saints from northern Italy have stepped from in a world inhabited by Giotto and Dante and the basilica of Santa Croce in Florence; a miniature by the Berlin Master of Mary of Burgundy belongs in age of Rogier van der Weyden and Hans Memling; a painting from a choir book by the zMaster B.F.y can hold its place with Leonardo da Vinci and Palestrina. Manuscripts were always at the heart of intellectual and visual culture. For thirty years Sandra Hindman has been selecting and refining a collection of perfect medieval miniatures which are the quintessence of their time. Each is a window which illuminates a world. The history of stained glass, architecture, fresco painting, tapestries and wood carving, as well as medieval literature, religion, music and romance, are all made slightly clearer and more focused by looking at the illuminated miniatures chosen for exhibition here.