Federico Gualdi. Philosophia Hermetica. 1790.
Biblioteca Digital Hispánica. Beato de Liébana : códice de Fernando I y Dña. Sancha (1047)
Yesterday at sunrise the sky was the perfect copy of this miniature. Two hawks were flying silently. A magnificent overlook on their preys.
Miniature opklæbet på albumblad. ”En skriver på en terrasse”
Davids Samling, Copenhagen
The last page of a medieval book is usually a protective flyleaf, which is positioned between the actual text and the bookbinding. It was usually left blank and it therefore often filled up with pen trials, notes, doodles, or drawings. This addition I encountered today and it is not what you’d expect: a full-on drawing of a maiden playing the lute, which she holds just like a guitar. A peaceful smile shines on her face. I love this rockstar lady, so unexpectedly positioned at the end of the book, trying to catch the reader’s attention as he is closing it.
Pic: London, British Library, Sloane MS 554 (more here).
By Johann Herolt
Since the fifth century bindings have been used to hold together gatherings of paper or parchment. The early bindings were designed to preserve the information contained within the volume, making it easier to hold, to store and to transport. The spread of learning across Europe, the introduction of printing and rise of literacy increased the demand for books and influenced the development of the trade from a small medieval workshop to the mass-production of the twentieth century.
Rare books and special collections of the State Library of New South Wales was formed in 1962 although the base of the collections were formed in the nineteenth century through the first Australian Subscription Library and later the Free Public Library. The collection contains a range of material from medieval manuscripts to modern private press and artists’ books.
Sergio Macedo - Selenia, 1976.
This beautiful watercolor image is from the inside of one of the original covers of our copy of Robert Fludd’s Utriusque cosmi maioris scilicet et minoris metaphysica.