Extraordinary facsimile edition made in 1994 of the manuscript De Universo, or De Rerum Naturis, by Rabano Mauro, or Rabanus Maurus, signature Cod. Casin, 132, Archive of the Abbey of Montecassino (Italy), 11th century.
The Archives of the Abbey of Montecassino in Italy, the religious community founded by Saint Benedict in the 6th century that was the center of medieval monastic life, has the invaluable MS Rabanus Maurus Cassinese codex, which was produced in Montecassino during the time. of the abab Teobaldo (1022-35) and contains the great encyclopedic dictionary De Universo, or De rerum naturis, which Rabanus Maurus (Mainz, ca. 776 – Oestrich-Winkel, February 4, 856), a Fulda monk who became As bishop of Mainz, he wrote between 842 and 847, at the zenith of the Carolingian era.
Rabanus Maurus wrote his 22-volume encyclopedic work De Universo de Rerum Naturis. This Latin manuscript is a shortened version of the complete work and is enhanced with frameless miniatures in the text and decorated capitals throughout.
Created between 1022 and 1035, almost two centuries after the original Carolingian text, the large format of the book demonstrates the continuing importance of De Universo in the Romanesque period. It was made in Italy in the monastery of Montecassino under the direction of Abbot Teobaldo and remained there as a record of knowledge of the world for the benefit of the monastic community.
The lively and endearing images scattered throughout the text preserve a rare visual record of medieval everyday life. Sturdy figures with expressive eyes and bright yet earthy clothing inhabit the pages alongside angels, animals, cities, and snow. The ingenuity of the drawing only serves to make their role more authentic as illustrations of the world experienced by the monks of the 11th century.
This large format codex consists of 530 pages in Beneventan script, splendidly illustrated with more than 360 miniatures with figures and vivid colors. The true importance of the codex goes beyond its artistic merit, since De Universo is one of the main medieval encyclopedias and the first compiled after two centuries of silence, that is, after the Etymologies of San Isidoro de Sevilla. And although Rabanus was inspired by this latest work, De Universo surpasses it for the grandeur of its concepts and its noble goal of spreading knowledge.
The work is like an immense library of knowledge that covers the entire Middle Ages, a combination and a representative sample of various aspects: the historical and biblical tradition of the Church, books and culture, the animal and plant worlds, descriptions of the human life, the nature of the soul and body, monsters and miracles, celestial phenomena and the calculation of time, weights and measures, minerals and metals, the organization of states, music, medicine, agriculture, the science of war, manual labor, diet, everyday tools and objects. There is no facet of the Middle Ages that is not discussed in this encyclopedia, which reflects the entire civilization of the time. Furthermore, the miniatures, which illustrate each subject in wonderful scenes, faithfully follow the style and purpose of the text, making the codex a great fresco of universal order.
Limited edition of 500 copies, facsimile bound by hand in brown calfskin on wooden boards and ties. Format 35 x 49 cm. 530 pages. Presented in a brown calfskin case with dry engravings on the planes.
The companion study book is available in Italian (216 pages) and another volume in English with a summary of the commentary. Texts by Guglielmo Cavallo.
Complete and in perfect condition.
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