Sunday, October 16, 2005

Welsh Phænomena

All these fascinating images come from the first half of a hybrid manuscript of medieval astronomy, this particular section being written in Caroline miniscule and illustrated on vellum (it seems) in c. 1000 AD.

We are told:

" The main text in the older part is the Latin translation by Germanicus (15 BC-19 AD) of the Greek Phaenomena by Aratus of Soli (c. 315-c. 240 BC), which describes the constellations. This is illustrated with a series of remarkable diagrams and coloured drawings reflecting the overlap between myth, astronomy and astrology at this period."
I was absorbed with this extraordinary book for over an hour. As the early 19th century owner wrote inside the front cover, "Astronomy and very curious".

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