Responsables du projet/Project leaders : Benjamin Pohl (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Établissements principaux/Main institutions : University of Cambridge
Projet en cours/Project in progress
My project will be the first to identify and analyse the evidence for an illuminated exemplar for London, British Library, MS Cotton Nero D viii. MS Cotton Nero D viii is an English manuscript produced during the second half of the twelfth century, perhaps at St. John’s Abbey, Colchester. The manuscript’s context of transmission before the later Middle Ages has so far remained largely unexplored. The implications of my analysis of the material features of MS Cotton Nero D viii, especially remnants of illustrative matter from its exemplar, would be transformative in informing our present knowledge about the manuscript’s use and prospective readership, as well as of medieval Latin manuscript culture in general. Indeed, to date, both MS Cotton Nero D viii and other Latin historical manuscripts from the period c.1000-1150 have been considered as lacking illustrative content beyond the level of decorated initials and litterae notabiliores. However, as my preliminary investigation of MS Cotton Nero D viii demonstrated, this manuscript almost certainly derives from an illustrated copy of Dudo of St. Quentin’s Historia Normannorum. Indeed, the research I propose here will establish that MS Cotton Nero D viii can also be related, via a shared exemplar, to another Norman manuscript (Rouen, Bibliothèque Municipale, MS 1173/Y11) which, albeit considered unillustrated by previous scholars, I was able to conclusively show contained traces of figurative illuminations in the form of pen line drawings (see my article B. Pohl, ‘Poems, Pictures and Purpose: New Perspectives on the Manuscripts of Dudo of St. Quentin’s Historia Normannorum’, Scriptorium 67 (2013), 229-58).