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Medieval Manuscript Now Available Online

Department News, Digitization, Rare Books

Folio 130 verso

An exciting new Special Collections digital collection is now available in the UH Digital Library. This collection features a fifteenth century manuscript, the Book of Hours, Use of Reims.

Created in Northern France, this book of hours contains beautifully illustrated and handwritten pages. The text, written on parchment, is in both Latin and Old French, and the scribe is identifed as Paulinus de Sorcy.

From folio 64 recto

While many medieval manuscripts feature images that are closely related to their text, this one is primarily illustrated with marginalia. These whimsical images enliven the borders of various pages and contain both humans and animals. In one illustration, a man plays a harp. In another, a monkey or ape inspects a vial of urine in a satire of medieval medicine.

The digital collection is organized into three objects — one contains the complete manuscript of almost 200 leaves, one highlights the illuminated pages, and the third shows the binding and edges. This beautiful manuscript is an exciting addition to our digital collections, so be sure to check it out soon!

New Exhibit Coming Soon

Department News, Exhibits

The DJ Screw and the Rise of Houston Hip Hop exhibit has come down and Special Collections is busy prepping for the next exhibit, also related to music but from a completely different time and place.

The next exhibit, Sacra et Profana: Music in Medieval Manuscriptsencompasses the sacred music of Christian, Jewish, and Islamic peoples as well as the profane, or secular, music. It also considers manuscripts’ physical nature, their production by hand and development to print. It is scheduled to open on October 10.

The exhibit was produced in the context of a seminar taught by Dr. Judith Steinhoff entitled “Art Exhibition: Music in Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts,” which engaged the students in all aspects of the creation of an art exhibit.

For more information about the exhibit and the class’ work, visit the exhibit page. And if you missed the DJ Screw exhibit, you can still learn about it or take a look at some of the featured items in the UH Digital Library collection, DJ Screw Photographs & Memorabilia.

Watch the blog for more information about Sacra et Profana: Music in Medieval Manuscripts as October 10 approaches!