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Illuminations 2018 Calendar


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Early books of scripture or theology were written by hand by monastic scribes. The most elegant and expensive of these manuscripts were illuminated: lit up by pictures and other embellishments in bright pigments and gold leaf. In the thirteenth century, universities joined monasteries and abbeys in creating demand for books, and production of illuminated manuscripts spread from the monastery to professional workshops. Many of the images reproduced here are found in medieval Books of Hours; all are in the collection of the British Library.