Description This eleventh-century Gospel Lectionary was written in a clear Carolingian minuscule in Regensburg, Germany. Its remarkable treasure binding, which is original to the manuscript, is extremely fragile due to the Byzantine or Islamic silk that constitutes the spine; therefore it is not possible to image the entire manuscript. The cover, which alone has been photographed, is a rare survival and a rich example of Ottonian art. Bound in silver, the front cover displays an impressive mastery of filigree, segments of which have been gilded. A variety of textures and substances, including niello bosses in the corners, ivory plaques depicting the four Evangelists, gemstones (now lost), and a golden image of the Crucifixion beneath a polished rock crystal, give the cover an opulence rarely seen in medieval bookbinding. The back cover, necessarily flat to lie on the altar without damaging the decoration, consists of a sheet of hammered and gilded silver, engraved with an image of St. Michael slaying a dragon. This image has traditionally led to an association with the abbey of SS. Peter and Michael in Mondsee, Austria, but its more recent attribution to Otloh, a scribe active in Regensburg, suggests that it is more likely of German manufacture.
|9/27/1983||Treatment||examined for exhibition|
- Liturgical Objects in The Walters Art Gallery. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1967.
- 4000 Years of Modern Art. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore; Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore. 1953-1957.
- The History of Bookbinding 525-1950 A.D.. Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore. 1957-1958.
- 2,000 Years of Calligraphy. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1965.
- Splendor in Books. Grolier Club, New York; The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1977-1978.
- Ivory: The Sumptuous Art. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1983-1984.
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- Regensburger Buchmalerei: Von frühkarolingischer Zeit bis zum Ausgang des Mittelalters. Museen der Stadt Regensburg, Regensburg. 1987.
- Judging a Book by its Cover: Fine Bindings. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1988.
- Covered in Meaning: Book Bindings from The Walters. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1997-1998.
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- Schatzkammer: Henry Walters' German Manuscripts. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2006.
- In the Beginning: Bibles Before the Year 1000. Freer Gallery of Art, Washington. 2006-2007.
- Treasures of Heaven. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland; The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore; The British Museum, London. 2010-2011.
Provenance Jacques Rosenthal [art dealer], Munich, early 20th century [mode of acquisition unknown]; Henry Walters, Baltimore, between 1925-1931, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters
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