Friday, June 14, 2013

Recent News Items for Medievalists

Of interest to Medievalists? A couple older items, plus one that is newer:

Camels in medieval book illustration
Have you ever asked yourself what a camel looked like in medieval times? Marvelously, we have some idea, thanks to drawings found in three of the greatest Anglo-Saxon manuscripts, all at the British Library: the Beowulf manuscript (Cotton Vitellius A XV), the Old English Hexateuch (Cotton Claudius B IV), and an illustrated miscellany from 11th-century Canterbury (Cotton Tiberius B V)....
Medieval and Earlier Manuscripts Blog, Apr. 30

Lambeth Palace retrieves stolen rare books
From an early edition of Shakespeare’s Henry IV Part 2 to illustrated accounts of the first expeditions to America, an extraordinary collection of some 1,400 rare books dating back to the early 17th century has been returned to Lambeth Palace in London nearly 40 years after it was stolen. In February 2011, the palace’s newly appointed librarian was stunned to hear from a solicitor dealing with the estate of the recently deceased thief, in which the culprit—who had been “associated with the library”—made a full confession and revealed the location of the books in a London attic....
The Guardian (UK), Apr. 29; BBC News Magazine, Apr. 24

Folger Shakespeare Library to get renovated
The Great Hall of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., where exhibits are usually staged, has just closed for the summer for a $1.5 million renovation. New windows will let natural light into the hall for the first time in decades, according to Garland Scott, head of external relations for the library. The renovation will also provide new exhibition cases and improved climate control to help preserve its priceless collection of books, manuscripts, and artifacts....
Washington Post: The Style Blog, May 31

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