Digital catalog of illuminated manuscripts of the Spanish Codices of the 10th-12th century
Dr. Kristin Böse, Jitka Ehlers M.A.
The digital catalog of illuminated manuscripts of medieval Spain is based on an inventory of about 4,500 colored small image slides, located in the Madrid Department of the German Archaeological Institute (DAI). The collection was compiled between 1962 to 1965 on the initiative of the director and art historian Helmut Schlunk, who had a great interest in the early medieval art of Spain. Otto Karl Werckmeister at that time employed as a research assistant at the DAI Madrid was responsible for the collection's composition. Werckmeister and Detlef Noack, photographer of the Institute Madrid, visited libraries and archives in Spain, England, France and the United States. From this collaboration a number of Werckmeister's publications were emerged, and until this day the Spanish illuminated manuscripts remain one of his fields of research ( Die Bilder der drei Propheten in der Biblia Hispalense , in: Madrid Releases 4 , 141-188; The image of the "jugglers" in the Beatus of Silos , in: Reading medieval images, 2002, 128-139).
On site, a special focus was laid on the visual presentation of the manuscripts (miniatures, initials), which is why the collection offers a variety of close-ups. Thus, the project did not aim to replicate the medieval codex in its multi-media diversity. Nevertheless, every single page was completely preserved photographically. Furthermore, hybrid forms such as visual mazes of letters or diagrams were regarded, which has become a focal point of interest in art history.
Altogether reproductions of 36 illuminated manuscripts of different text categories have been collected. One focal point was the Apocalypse comments of Beatus of Liéebana represented in 11 codices.
Until this day the collection is presumed to be unique. Firstly, because some of the considered manuscripts are still accessible only through the original or in parts through facsimiles. Secondly, the collection offers the chance to reveal coherently the Spanish illuminations of the early and high Middle Ages in their artistic diversity and in their various text and book types.
In addition, this collection is also interesting in the perspective of the history of the discipline, since it provides a basis for discussions about the early approach to the medieval illuminations in general and the Spanish illumination in particular.
The image slides of illuminated manuscripts are available via the Arachne-Bookbrowser's TEI-Viewer. As a viewing tool the TEI-Viewer reproduces the location of the miniatures and initials in the book body and their relation to the texts. The image material was also supplemented by a series of general information complementing the manuscript. The TEI-Viewer thus enables an overview of the physical appearance and the visual presentation of the respective Codex. Creating connections between the manuscripts TEI-Viewer invites to interdisciplinary questions.
In the ARACHNE-VIEWER and in the TEI-VIEWER, which offers a more detailed object description, the following Codices are gradually available:
Apocalypse comments (Beatus von Liebana, In apocalypsin libri duodecim)
Burgo de Osma, Archivo de la Catedral, Cod. 1
El Escorial, Real Biblioteca del Monasterio de San Lorenzo, Cod. &. II.5
Girona, Archivo Capitular, Ms. 7, olim 41
London, British Library, Ms. Add. 11695
Madrid, Archivo Histórico Nacional, Cod. 1097B
Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, Vitr. 14-1
Madrid, Real Academia de la Historia, Cod. 33
New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, Ms. M. 644
Paris, Bibliotèque nationale de France, Ms. lat. 8878
Urgell, Museu diocesà, Cod. 501
Valladolid, Biblioteca Universitaria, Ms. 433
León, Archivo Catedralicio, Cod. 6
León, San Isidoro, Ms. 2
Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, Ms. Vitr. 13-1 (Biblia Hispalense)
Madrid, Real Academia de la Historia, Ms. 20
Rom, Hermanedad de Sacerdotes/Silos, Biblioteca de la Abadia (Fragment der Oña-Bibel)
León, San Isidor, Ms. 1 (Gregor der Große, Moralia in Hiob)
Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, Ms. 80 (Gregor der Große, Moralia in Hiob)
Madrid, Real Academia de la Historia, Cod. 8 (Cassiodor, Expositio Psalmorum)
Life of Saints
Collection of sermons
London, British Library, Ms. Add. 30851 (Psalter)
Santiago de Compostela, Biblioteca Universitaria, Ms. 609 (Stundenbuch Ferdinand I. von León)
Legitimate manuscripts (Collectio Hispana, Liber Iudicium)
El Escorial, Real Biblioteca del Monasterio de San Lorenzo, Cod. D.I.1 (Codex Aemilianense)
El Escorial, Real Biblioteca del Monasterio de San Lorenzo, Cod. D.I.2 (Codex Albeldense)