From manuscripts to the modern world - Part 1


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HTAV Middle Years Conference presentation, 28 October 2011 - Part 1.

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  • Of course, there are not just books in the State Library’s collection. What other sorts of things do you think you could find? Books, newspapers, pictures, CDs, videos, DVDs, manuscripts, maps and magazines are just some of the things that you can find. Altogether, there are around 5 million items!
  • DID YOU KNOW? ‘ Illuminated’ originally meant the gold or silver decoration because it ‘lit up’ the page!
  • Most people were Catholic and took their faith very seriously.
  • From manuscripts to the modern world - Part 1

    1. 1. he Medieval Imagination From Manuscripts to the Modern World Bethany Leong State Library of Victoria
    2. 3. <ul><li>What is in the State Library of Victoria’s Collection? </li></ul>CDs newspapers maps pictures magazines books DVDs videos manuscripts artefacts
    3. 4. The State Library of Victoria <ul><li>Education Programs: </li></ul><ul><li>Education programs run by State Library staff cater for around 20,000 students annually </li></ul><ul><li>The Open Access Program offers a free excursion to metropolitan government schools which are considered disadvantaged </li></ul>1
    4. 5. Medieval Calligraphy workshop <ul><li>Our Medieval Calligraphy workshop includes: </li></ul><ul><li>Brief introduction to the period and to the making of illuminated manuscripts </li></ul><ul><li>Tour of Mirror of the World to look at medieval manuscripts and the history of the book </li></ul><ul><li>Hands on workshop to create a piece of medieval calligraphy </li></ul>
    5. 6. Curriculum links <ul><li>VELS links: </li></ul><ul><li>The Humanities - History: </li></ul><ul><li>Level 5: studies of medieval societies, using a variety of sources that record features of past societies (including daily life, education, religion and culture). Use of primary sources, strengths and limitations of historical documents. </li></ul><ul><li>Australian Curriculum links: </li></ul><ul><li>History: </li></ul><ul><li>Year 8, the Ancient to the Modern World: Depth study 1, The Western and Islamic World, Medieval Europe – including the way of life (social, cultural, economic and political features) and the roles and relationships of different groups in society and the dominance of the Catholic church. </li></ul><ul><li>Plus integrated curriculum links with visual arts </li></ul>
    6. 7. Medieval manuscripts The Aspremont-Kievraing Psalter-Hours (c. 1300) 1 What is a manuscript? <ul><li>Hand-made book </li></ul><ul><li>Can be decorated or illuminated with silver or gold </li></ul><ul><li>Contains clues about life at the time they were produced </li></ul>
    7. 8. Medieval Europe vs. today Modern map of Europe 2 Europe – late Middle Ages 3
    8. 9. Illuminated manuscripts in society <ul><li>Recreational reading </li></ul>4 Choirbook fragments What were illuminated manuscripts used for? <ul><li>Religious services and duties </li></ul><ul><li>Personal religious studies </li></ul><ul><li>Recording information and legal documentation </li></ul><ul><li>The study of science and medicine </li></ul>
    9. 10. Manuscripts in medieval life <ul><li>Only a very small number of people owned or used manuscripts during the Middle Ages </li></ul><ul><li>These books can tell us a lot about medieval life </li></ul>Feudal system Warfare Religion Daily life 5
    10. 11. Daily life 6 7 8 9 <ul><li>Peasants </li></ul><ul><li>Hard labour – for the lord, business and family </li></ul><ul><li>Food preparation </li></ul><ul><li>Looking after children </li></ul><ul><li>Housework </li></ul><ul><li>Knight </li></ul><ul><li>Hunting </li></ul><ul><li>Training </li></ul><ul><li>Gambling </li></ul><ul><li>Attending church </li></ul><ul><li>Clergy </li></ul><ul><li>Attending church (eight times a day) </li></ul><ul><li>Chores: gardening, food preparation, scribing </li></ul><ul><li>Study </li></ul><ul><li>Lord and lady </li></ul><ul><li>Hunting </li></ul><ul><li>Recreation </li></ul><ul><li>Training </li></ul><ul><li>Managing the manor </li></ul><ul><li>Attending church </li></ul>
    11. 12. The cost of manuscript production <ul><li>Manuscripts were hand-made and took a very long time to make. </li></ul><ul><li>Many different people were involved: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Parchmenter: prepared the parchment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scribe: wrote the script </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Illuminator: completed the illustrations and decoration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Binder and finisher: sewed the manuscript into a codex </li></ul></ul>10 Pope Boniface VIII, Book of Decretals (1300s)
    12. 13. Making a manuscript Vellum Exemplar Cover boards Binding thongs Bone spatula 11
    13. 14. Common features and themes in manuscripts <ul><li>Miniature </li></ul><ul><li>Historiated initial </li></ul><ul><li>Decorated initial </li></ul><ul><li>Rubric </li></ul><ul><li>Border </li></ul>Move on
    14. 15. Common features in manuscripts Miniature Historiated initial Decorated initial Rubric Border Move on 12 Book of hours (c. 1420)
    15. 16. Common features in manuscripts Miniature Historiated initial Decorated initial Rubric Border Move on Book of hours (c. 1420) 12