The Book Of Beasts: A Facsimile Of MS. Bodley 764

The Book Of Beasts: A Facsimile Of MS. Bodley 764

The Book of Beasts: A Facsimile of MS. Bodley 764

In the Middle Ages, people believed that studying animals allowed them to read the Divine Order as written in the natural world. In image and word, medieval bestiaries illustrated beasts in stunning detail and explained their scientific nature as well as their allegorical significance.This bestiary, dating from the mid-13th century and preserved at the Bodleian Library in Oxford since the early 17th century, is one of the finest and most charming medieval English bestiaries. A perfect example of medieval illumination, it is clearly the work of a master artist and was probably destined for an aristocratic home. The animal scenes, richly ornamented with gold, convey a wonderful sense of delicacy and affectionate intimacy.This exquisite facsimile contains reproductions of all 137 folios and 135 miniatures: their original gold leaf is superbly rendered in high-quality foiling. The volume includes a detailed introduction by Christopher de Hamel which provides a context for bestiaries in general and MS. Bodley 764 in particular, along with a discussion of the manuscript's provenance and style.Christopher de Hamel has been Donnelley Fellow Librarian of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge since 2000. For twenty-five years before that he was responsible...

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