Size Matters (Part 2): Giant Medieval Manuscripts!

Simply gigantic

medievalfragments

By Jenny Weston

In last week’s blogpost, Irene O’Daly explored the world of portable books — manuscripts that are small enough (and light enough) to be carried around by the user. In today’s post we shift our attention to the opposite end of the ‘size-spectrum’ and examine some of the largest manuscripts ever produced in the Middle Ages.

Book1 Late-Medieval Choir Books

While most medieval manuscripts are of a size that could be easily picked up and carried, there are some books that are so large and so heavy that it would take two (or more) people to move them.

Among these are volumes known as ‘Giant Bibles’. These books typically contain a complete collection of the Old and New Testaments and present huge dimensions. One particularly famous large-format Bible is an early thirteenth-century pandect known as the Codex Gigas, which measures (a whopping) 890 x 490 mm and weighs over 165 pounds. In addition to…

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Happy Birthday Beethoven!

Happy Birthday Mr Beethoven! By the way is it really today?

I R POLAR BEAR

Two hundred forty-four years ago in Bonn, Germany one of the world’s greatest composers was born. Ludwig van Beethoven has been a big influence on me in many ways, most of them musically. I have spent a great deal of time learning all I can about the man and his music. I have read six biographies on him, one of which was written by his secretary Anton Schindler several years after Beethoven’s death in 1827. But I would like to share my own story about how I came to discover him and why I admire him so much.

In 1987 I was a very different person. I had been going through some of the most horrible times of my life and I was listening to some of the worst kind of music imaginable. I mean, you know, music about the devil, death and stuff like that. Bad stuff! At the…

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My Day

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I’ll have a hellish day at work.