Project Manuscripts ?
by Alison Stones
The Pilot Project concentrated on three
manuscripts made by the same team of scribes, decorators and
London, BL Add. 10292-4 and Royal 14.E.III,
Amsterdam, BPH 1/Manchester, The John Rylands University Library French 1/Oxford,
Library, Douce 215.
one copy is dated: 1316 (1317 New
Style); it has
more pictures than any other surviving copy. The other two copies
include many of the same subjects at the same places in the text; but
often they differ both in placement and in treatment.
· they were made by the same team of craftsmen (all anonymous)
· they use similar script, penflourished decoration, champie initials
· the major illuminator worked in all three copies (he is anonymous)
· there are two other contemporary illuminators, also anonymous, whose work may be compared
· other works by these artists allow their region to be established: between Saint-Omer (county of Artois, diocese of ThŽrouanne) and Tournai and Ghent (both in the County of Flanders and diocese of Tournai)
· rubrics (captions written in red ink) accompany most of the pictures; they are never the same across copies; sometimes what they say is misleading or wrong
· marginal notes are often preserved, some for the rubricator, others for the illuminator (most were erased); they show what kinds of information the rubricators and illuminators were given to work with
· there are additions by a later illuminator (also anonymous) in one copy, showing what episodes a later owner thought were important to have added
· comparisons among these copies suggest reasons why they are different:
they suggest what
kind of people
the patrons were and what their input was