Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The decline of the illuminated manuscript

Should we not confront the fact that the foliate flourishes associated with the medieval illuminated manuscript are not some embellishment of the page. They are not a decorative diversion from the text, as if the job of hand copying of books were not already a strenuous and time-consuming enough undertaking. How could this be? How could this not be?

Surely the ubiquity and beauty of the medieval sentence is one whole, and this means the illumination of the manuscript is a crucial dimension of the message. 

What then was the cognitive burden of the illuminated page? What then was the "progress" of the printed book? 

To be continued....

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