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Medieval and Early Modern Greek Manuscripts : Gospel book

Medieval and Early Modern Greek Manuscripts

<p style='text-align: justify;'> This illuminated <i> Gospel Book</i> with Evangelist portraits has been in England since the Middle Ages: it was brought there in the thirteenth century at the behest of the scholar and bishop Robert Grosseteste (ca. 1179-1253), a fundamental figure in introducing the study of Greek into thirteenth-century England. He collected Greek manuscripts, which he had brought from Greece and elsewhere; among them is another manuscript now in Cambridge, <a target='_blank' class='externalLink' href=''> University Library, MS Ff.1.24</a> containing the <i> Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs.</i></p><p style='text-align: justify;'> Gonville and Caius College MS 403/412 contains the four Gospels without any prefatory matter or tables. The illumination is incomplete: only the portraits of Mark and Luke are extant; blank spaces were left for four headpieces, which were never filled. The illumination of this manuscript belongs to the so-called 'decorative style' (previously also known as 'Karahissar group' or 'Nicaea school'), extensively studied by Annemarie Weyl Carr (in particular Weyl Carr 1982; 1987; 1991). This is a Byzantine provincial style, widespraed between the 12th and 13th centuries in the Cyprus-Palestinian area. The script and the layout also point to this period and area: the script belongs to the <i> style <i> epsilon</i> à pseudo-ligatures basses</i> which has been linked with the areas of Palestine and Cyprus, between the end of the 12th and the beginning of the 13th century (see Canart 1981, pp. 46, 50-51; see Hands for further details and bibliography). </p><p style='text-align: justify;'> Dr Erika Elia</p>

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