12th Century

Ashmole Bestiary

Vollständige Faksimile-Ausgabe im Originalformat der Handschrift Ms. Ashmole 1511--Bestiarium : aus dem Besitz der Bodleian Library, Oxford. Graz: Akademische Druck- u. Verlagsanstalt, c1982.  

PA 8275 .B4 1982 Special Collections


The Ms. Ashmole 1511 has been identified with the 12th cent. family of bestiaries. It may have been produced in the early 13th century. This Latin manuscript contains about 130 miniatures with animal illustrations on richly gilded background. There are six full page illustrations. The codex begins with the story of creation on the first 8 leaves and the bestiary begins on leaf 10.  The ninth section of the codex includes extracts from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiae.  The manuscript also includes the text on birds called the Aviarium by Hugh of Fouilloy. The manuscript is probably English in origin, perhaps from Peterborough. This and other bestiaries extend the tradition of the Latin Physiologus, a collection of moralized beast tales first compiled in Greek at Alexandria and later translated into Latin and most European vernacular languages during the early Middle Ages. The Bestiary expanded the moral content of the Physiologus into religious messages.  MS Ashmole 1511 resides in the Bodleian Library at Oxford. The all leather binding of the facsimile is a replica of a Romanic binding, presently in the possession of the Austrian National Library in Vienna.


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