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The Book of Kells, dating from about 800, is a brilliantly decorated manuscript of the four Gospels. This new official guide (French language edition), by the former Keeper of Manuscripts at Trinity College Library, Dublin, provides fascinating insights into the Book of Kells, revealing the astounding detail and richness of one of the greatest works of medieval art. The illustrations in the guide include reproductions of complete pages, and details that allow one to marvel at the intricacy of the decoration. The Book of Kells is explored through its historical background; its structure; its decorative elements, including the richness of its symbols and themes; the scribes and artists who worked on the manuscript; and the tools and pigments used in its creation.
This is the first new introduction to Anglo-Saxon art in twenty-five years and the first book to take account of the 2009 discovery of the Staffordshire Hoard the largest cache of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork yet found. Written by one of the leading scholars in the field and illustrated with many of the most impressive artifacts, it will be the authoritative book on the subject for years to come.
The Anglo-Saxon period in England, roughly A.D. 400 1100, was a time of extraordinary and profound cultural transformation, culminating in a dramatic shift from a barbarian society to a recognizably medieval civilization. Settled by northern European tribal groupings of pagan and illiterate warriors and farmers in the fifth century, England had by the eleventh century acquired all the trappings of medieval statehood a developed urban network and complex economy, a carefully regulated coinage, flourishing centers of religion and learning, a vigorous literary tradition, and a remarkable and highly influential artistic heritage that had significant impact far beyond England itself. This book traces the changing nature of that art, the different roles it played in culture, and the various ways it both reflected and influenced the context in which it was created.
From its first manifestations in the metalwork and ceramics of the early settlers, Anglo-Saxon art displays certain inherent and highly distinctive stylistic and iconographic features. Despite the many new influences that were regularly absorbed and adapted by Anglo-Saxon artists and craftsmen, these characteristics continued to resonate through the centuries in the great manuscripts, ivories, metalwork, and sculpture of this inventive and creative culture. Anglo-Saxon Art which features 150 color and black-and-white illustrations is arranged thematically while following a broadly chronological sequence. An introduction highlights the character of Anglo-Saxon art, its leitmotifs, and its underlying continuities. Leslie Webster places this art firmly in its wider cultural and political context while also examining the significant conceptual relationship between the visual and literary art of the period."
The Book of Kells is a masterpiece of medieval art - a brilliantly decorated version of the four Gospels with full-page depictions of Christ, the Virgin and the Evangelists as well as a wealth of smaller decorative painting. This new book, by the Keeper of Manuscripts at Trinity College Library, Dublin, represents on a generous scale the glories of the Book of Kells for today's readers, revealing the astounding detail and richness of one of the greatest treasures of medieval art. Its illustrations feature 59 full-size reproductions of complete pages of the manuscript, and, in addition, enlarged details that allow one to relish the intricacy of elements barely visible to the naked eye. We explore the Book of Kells through its historical background; a display of the elements of the book, actual size; the spectacular openings of the texts that precede the Gospels; a study of earlier and comparable manuscripts; detailed examination of symbols and themes, with special enlarged details; a look at the scribes and artists who worked on the manuscript; and a consideration of technical aspects, illuminated by recent scientific research.
In a museum in the small town of Bayeux in Normandy, specially devised to hold this single object, is a strip of linen nearly one thousand years old. It is 230 feet long and about 20 inches high. On it, embroidered in brightly colored wool, are figures of men, animals, buildings, and ships. In a series of vivid scenes, with a running explanatory text in Latin, it relates the invasion of England by William of Normandy and his victory at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Nothing remotely like the Bayeux Tapestry exists anywhere in the world, yet comparatively few people have been to Bayeux to see it and appreciate how totally absorbing it is. This book, first published in 1985, reproduces the Tapestry in full color and makes it accessible as never before. The story told in the Tapestry has all the ingredients of an epic poem, and a cast of characters that includes King Edward the Confessor; his liegeman, Duke Harold; and William, Duke of Normandy. When Edward dies, Harold succeeds him as king. William, who has a better dynastic claim, invades England, and at the Battle of Hastings Harold is defeated and killed. Here the Tapestry breaks off, but it probably originally concluded with William's coronation--the beginning of a sequence of monarchs that has continued virtually unbroken until today, and of the English nation as we know it. The Tapestry is reproduced in full color over 146 pages, with captions on a fold-out page for easy reference. A second reproduction of the Tapestry in black and white has a detailed accompanying commentary. Sir David Wilson, former Director of the British Museum, provides an up-to-date summary of the historical evidence, explaining each episode and coveringrelated topics such as the costumes, armor, ships, buildings, and customs. One of the primary sources for the history of the period, the Tapestry is a social document of incalculable value. It is the sole survivor of an art form that may once have been widespread, the wall-hanging commemorating the deeds of a great man.
"Images in the Margins" is the third in the popular Medieval
Imagination series of small, affordable books drawing on manuscript
illumination in the collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum and the
British Library. Each volume focuses on a particular theme and
provides an accessible, delightful introduction to the imagination
of the medieval world.
The Book of Kells, dating from about 800, is a brilliantly decorated manuscript of the four Gospels. This new official guide, by the former Keeper of Manuscripts at Trinity College Library, Dublin, provides fascinating insights into the Book of Kells, revealing the astounding detail and richness of one of the greatest works of medieval art. The illustrations in the guide include reproductions of complete pages, and details that allow one to marvel at the intricacy of the decoration. The Book of Kells is explored through its historical background; its structure; its decorative elements, including the richness of its symbols and themes; the scribes and artists who worked on the manuscript; and the tools and pigments used in its creation.
This book explores how the Virgin Mary's life is told in hymns, sermons, icons, art, and other media in the Byzantine Empire before AD 1204. A group of international specialists examines material and textual evidence from both Byzantine and Muslim-ruled territories that was intended for a variety of settings and audiences and seeks to explain why Byzantine artisans and writers chose to tell stories about Mary, the Mother of God, in such different ways. Sometimes the variation reflected the theological or narrative purposes of story-tellers; sometimes it expressed their personal spiritual preoccupations. Above all, the variety of aspects that this holy figure assumed in Byzantium reveals her paradoxical theological position as meeting-place and mediator between the divine and created realms. Narrative, whether 'historical', theological, or purely literary, thus played a fundamental role in the development of the Marian cult from Late Antiquity onward.
The Book of Kells, dating from about 800, is a brilliantly decorated manuscript of the four Gospels. This new official guide (Spanish language edition), by the former Keeper of Manuscripts at Trinity College Library, Dublin, provides fascinating insights into the Book of Kells, revealing the astounding detail and richness of one of the greatest works of medieval art. The illustrations in the guide include reproductions of complete pages, and details that allow one to marvel at the intricacy of the decoration. The Book of Kells is explored through its historical background; its structure; its decorative elements, including the richness of its symbols and themes; the scribes and artists who worked on the manuscript; and the tools and pigments used in its creation.
The Book of Kells, dating from about 800, is a brilliantly decorated manuscript of the four Gospels. This new official guide (German language edition), by the former Keeper of Manuscripts at Trinity College Library, Dublin, provides fascinating insights into the Book of Kells, revealing the astounding detail and richness of one of the greatest works of medieval art. The illustrations in the guide include reproductions of complete pages, and details that allow one to marvel at the intricacy of the decoration. The Book of Kells is explored through its historical background; its structure; its decorative elements, including the richness of its symbols and themes; the scribes and artists who worked on the manuscript; and the tools and pigments used in its creation.
This book explores the range of images in Byzantine art known as donor portraits. It concentrates on the distinctive, supplicatory contact shown between ordinary, mortal figures and their holy, supernatural interlocutors. The topic is approached from a range of perspectives, including art history, theology, structuralist and post-structuralist anthropological theory, and contemporary symbol and metaphor theory. Rico Franses argues that the term 'donor portraits' is inappropriate for the category of images to which it conventionally refers and proposes an alternative title for the category, contact portraits. He contends that the most important feature of the scenes consists in the active role that they play within the belief systems of the supplicants. They are best conceived of not simply as passive expressions of stable, pre-existing ideas and concepts, but as dynamic proponents in a fraught, constantly shifting landscape. The book is important for all scholars and students of Byzantine art and religion.
In this artful look back at medieval society, the realms and reveries of the Middle Ages unfold in over 300 black-and-white illustrations. Included are images of warriors, scholars, musicians, architecture, business and recreation, myths and legends, and more.
The Haggadot commissioned by wealthy patrons in the Middle Ages are among the most beautifully decorated Hebrew manuscripts, and The `Brother' Haggadah - so-called because of its close relationship to The Rylands Haggadah in the collection of the John Rylands Library, Manchester - is one of the finest of these to have survived. Created by Sephardi - or southern - artists and scribes in Catalonia in the second quarter of the 14th century, it sets out the liturgy and sequence of the Passover Seder, a ritual feast by which Jewish families give thanks for the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt as described in the Book of Exodus. This finely produced facsimile edition begins with an introduction by medieval scholar Professor Marc Michael Epstein, who sets out the background to the Passover and provides an analysis of the manuscript's iconographic scheme. Following are essays on the provenance of The `Brother' Haggadah by Ilana Tahan, head of the Hebrew and Christian collections at the British Library, and on the Shaltiel family, former owners of the manuscript, by Hebrew scholar Eliezer Laine. The book also contains a translation of the poems and commentary in the manuscript by the late Raphael Lowe, former Goldsmid Professor of Hebrew at University College London, and a translation of the Haggadah liturgy.
What can medieval sculptural representations of women tell us about medieval women's experiences of motherhood? Presumably the work of male sculptors, working for clerical patrons, these sculptures are unlikely to have been shaped by women's maternal experiences during their production. Once produced, however, their beholders would have included women who were mothers and potential mothers, thus opening a space between the sculptures' intended meanings and other meanings liable to be produced by these women as they brought their own interests and concerns to these works of art. Building on theories of reception and response, this book focuses on interactions between women as beholders and a range of sculptures made in France in the twelfth through sixteenth centuries, aiming to provide insight into women's experiences of motherhood; particular sculptures considered include the Annunciation and Visitation from Reims cathedral, the femme-aux-serpents from Moissac, the transi of Jeanne de Bourbon-Vendome, the Eve from Autun, and a number of French Gothic Virgin and Child sculptures. Marian Bleeke is Associate Professor of Art History and Chair of the Department of Art and Design at Cleveland State University.
Early manuscripts in the English language include religious works, plays, romances, poetry and songs, as well as charms, notebooks, science and medieval medicine. How did scribes choose to arrange the words and images on the page in each manuscript? How did they preserve, clarify and illustrate writing in English? What visual guides were given to early readers of English in how to understand or use their books? 'Designing English' is an overview of eight centuries of graphic design in manuscripts and inscriptions from the Anglo-Saxon to the early Tudor periods. Working beyond the traditions established for Latin, scribes of English needed to be more inventive, so that each book was an opportunity for redesigning. 'Designing English' focuses on the craft, agency and intentions of scribes, painters and engravers in the practical processes of making pages and artefacts. It weighs up the balance of ingenuity and copying, practicality and imagination in their work. It surveys bilingual books, format, ordinatio, decoration and reading aloud, as well as inscriptions on objects, monuments and buildings. With over ninety illustrations, drawn especially from the holdings of the Bodleian Library in Old English and Middle English, 'Designing English' gives a comprehensive overview of English books and other material texts across the Middle Ages.
In this book, Liz James offers a comprehensive history of wall mosaics produced in the European and Islamic middle ages. Taking into account a wide range of issues, including style and iconography, technique and material, and function and patronage, she examines mosaics within their historical context. She asks why the mosaic was such a popular medium and considers how mosaics work as historical 'documents' that tell us about attitudes and beliefs in the medieval world. The book is divided into two part. Part I explores the technical aspects of mosaics, including glass production, labour and materials, and costs. In Part II, James provides a chronological history of mosaics, charting the low and high points of mosaic art up until its abrupt end in the late middle ages. Written in a clear and engaging style, her book will serve as an essential resource for scholars and students of medieval mosaics.
Illuminated manuscripts from England and France are among the greatest masterpieces of medieval European art. This beautiful book showcases dozens of the finest examples, some of which have never before been exhibited and are rarely reproduced. It reveals the close artistic and intellectual connections between Anglo-Saxon and Norman England and medieval France, where scribes and illuminators often shared stylistic ideas and subjects. We include a wide range of important texts and illuminations from the collections of the British Library and the Bibliotheque nationale de France, including ornamented initials, delicate line drawings and fully painted scenes on gold grounds, illustrated with more than 75 full-page colour images.
From The Book of Kells to Boccaccio's Decameron, from the Vienna Genesis to Dante's Divine Comedy: to open Codices illustres is to open the door into a precious, private world. Now in a revised format, this radiant book brings you face-to-face with 167 of the most exquisite and important manuscripts of the medieval age. Presented in brilliant large-format reproductions, these paradigms of miniature painting and illumination from the 4th century to 1600 were once the property of some of the greatest power players in history. Now art-historical treasures, they are worth many millions and typically tucked away in private collections or closely guarded archives-until now. Although the focus of this collection is on European manuscripts, examples from Mexican, Persian, and Indian tradition illustrate the refinement and intricacy of manuscript illumination in non-European cultures. An informative synopsis for each manuscript orients the reader at a glance, while a 36-page appendix contains biographies of the artists, as well as an extensive bibliography, an index, and a glossary for technical terms.
Earliest (12th century) treatise on arts written by practicing artist. Pigments, glass blowing, stained glass, gold and silver work, more. 34 illus.
The Ormesby Psalter is perhaps the most magnificent yet enigmatic of the great Gothic psalters produced in East Anglia in the first half of the fourteenth century. Its pages boast a wealth of decoration picked out in rich colours and burnished gold, and its margins are inhabited by a vibrant crew of beasts, birds and insects. Fantastic imagery proliferates: musicians, mermaids, lovers and warriors are juxtaposed with scenes from everyday life, from chivalric legend, and from folk-tales, fables and riddles. The psalter takes its name from Robert of Ormesby, subprior at Norwich Cathedral Priory in the 1330s. He was not the first owner, however, and it has long been acknowledged that the writing, decoration and binding of the book took place in a series of distinct phases from the late thirteenth to the mid-fourteenth century. The final result was the work of four or five scribes and up to seven illuminators and its pages show a panorama of stylistic development. Unravelling its complexities has sometimes been thought to hold the key to understanding the 'East Anglian School', a group of large, luxury manuscripts connected with Norwich Cathedral and Norfolk churches and patrons. This book casts an entirely new light on its history, not only clarifying and dating the successive phases of production, but associating the main work on the manuscript with the patronage of John de Warenne, Earl of Surrey, one of the greatest magnates of the time. It is extensively illustrated with full-page colour reproductions of the manuscript's main decorated folios, as well as many smaller initials and numerous comparative illustrations.
Many beautiful illuminated manuscripts survive from the Middle Ages and can be seen in libraries and museums throughout Europe. But who were the skilled craftsmen who made these exquisite books? What precisely is parchment? How were medieval manuscripts designed and executed? What were the inks and pigments, and how were they applied? This book looks at the work of scribes, illuminators and book binders. Based principally on examples in the Bodleian Library, this lavishly illustrated account tells the story of manuscript production from the early Middle Ages through to the high Renaissance. Each stage of production is described in detail, from the preparation of the parchment, pens, paints and inks to the writing of the scripts and the final decoration and illumination of the manuscript. This book also explains the role of the stationer or bookshop, often to be found near cathedral and market squares, in the commissioning of manuscripts, and it cites examples of specific scribes and illuminators who can be identified through their work as professional lay artisans. Christopher de Hamel's engaging text is accompanied by a glossary of key technical terms relating to manuscripts and illumination, providing an invaluable introduction for anyone interested in studying medieval manuscripts today.
Ever since it came to the world's attention in the 17th century, the world's most famous tapestry has been a source of never-ending speculation. This book highlights the background of its construction and the events of 1066 that it portrays. It details warfare and weaponry, armour and costumes, depictions of everyday life, houses and farming.
One of the first artists to visit the Mayan ruins at Palenque after Mexican independence, Jean-Frederic Waldeck has long been dismissed as unreliable, his drawings of pre-Columbian art marred by his excessive interest in European styles of beauty. With this fresh look at Waldeck's entire output, including his desire to exhibit at Paris salons, his reconstructions of Mayan and Aztec subjects can be understood as art rather than illustration. Pasztory sees him as a unique Neoclassicist who has never been fully appreciated. In addition to illustrating Maya antiquities in the days before photography, Waldeck painted imaginary reconstructions of pre-Columbian life and rituals and scenes of everyday life in nineteenth-century Mexico. Most his contemporaries looking for exotic subject matter went east and are now referred to as Orientalists. Waldeck went west and found the exotic in the New World, but as Esther Pasztory suggests, he is an Orientalist in spirit. Waldeck's work was not considered interesting or important in its day, but twenty-first century viewers can appreciate his sensibility, which combines the modern domestic with the ancient mythic and features a theatrical version of Neoclassicism that looks forward to a Hollywood that would not exist until decades after the artist's death in 1875 at the age of 109.
After initial ambivalence about distinctive garb for its ministers, early Christianity developed both liturgical garments and visible markers of clerical status outside church. From the ninth century, moreover, new converts to the faith beyond the Alps developed a highly ornate style of liturgical attire; church vestments were made of precious silks and decorated with embroidered and woven ornament, often incorporating gold and jewels. Making use of surviving medieval textiles and garments; mosaics, frescoes, and manuscript illuminations; canon law; liturgical sources; literary works; hagiography; theological tracts; chronicles, letters, inventories of ecclesiastical treasuries, and wills, Maureen C. Miller in Clothing the Clergy traces the ways in which clerical garb changed over the Middle Ages.
Miller s in-depth study of the material culture of church vestments not only goes into detail about craft, artistry, and textiles but also contributes in groundbreaking ways to our understanding of the religious, social, and political meanings of clothing, past and present. As a language of power, clerical clothing was used extensively by eleventh-century reformers to mark hierarchies, to cultivate female patrons, and to make radical new claims for the status of the clergy. The medieval clerical culture of clothing had enduring significance: its cultivation continued within Catholicism and even some Protestant denominations and it influenced the visual communication of respectability and power in the modern Western world. Clothing the Clergy features seventy-nine illustrations, including forty color photographs that put the rich variety of church vestments on display."
The art of predicting earthly events from the movements of stars and planets has always been a source of fascination. Medieval astrologers, though sometimes feared to be magicians in league with demons, were usually revered scholars whose ideas and practices were widely respected. Politics, medicine, weather forecasting, cosmology and alchemy were all influenced by astrological concepts. Astrology in Medieval Manuscripts explores the dazzling complexity of western medieval astrology and its place in society, as revealed by a wealth of illustrated manuscripts from the British Library's rich medieval collection.
From simple charms to complex and subversive rituals to summon demons, diverse forms of magic were practiced in the Middle Ages. With numerous fascinating illustrations from the British Library's rich medieval collection, Magic in Medieval Manuscripts explores the place of magic in the medieval world. It examines representations of the magician, wise-woman and witch; magical objects; and ritual procedures, revealing the medieval fascination with the points of contact between this world and the celestial and infernal realms.
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