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Gospels


Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description This manuscript was produced at the end of the katholicate of Grigor IV (Tay) at the monastery of Pawoskan in Cilicia. The principal colophon on fols. 311r-313v dates the manuscript to 1193 CE (642 AE), and the patron, Bishop Karapet, a resident at the court of Grigor at Hromkla, is recorded in the dedication on fol. 12v. The colophon also records the siege of Jerusalem by Saladin in 1187, the Third Crusade (1189-1192) and Frederick Barbarossa's attempt to reclaim Palestine, and Barbarossa's death in 1190. The Canon Tables and the Eusebian letter within quatrefoil frames are decorated with architectural elements, geometric designs, floral motifs, and birds. The codex is further illuminated with historiated and inhabited initials forming the incipits of the Gospels and marginal decoration.
Conservation
Date Description Narrative
12/31/1969Loan Considerationexamined for loan
9/20/1987Examinationexamined for loan
Exhibitions
  • Early Christian and Byzantine Art. Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore. 1947.
  • Illuminated Manuscripts: Masterpieces in Miniature. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1984-1985.
  • Treasures in Heaven: Armenian Manuscript Illumination. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1988.
  • Treasures in Heaven: Armenian Illuminated Manuscripts. The Morgan Library & Museum, New York; The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1994.
  • Treasures from the Ark: 1700 Years of Armenian Christian Art. British Library, London. 2001.
  • Illuminating the Word: Gospel Books in the Middle Ages. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2004.
  • Armenie: La Magie d'Ecrit. Centre de la Vieille Charité, Marseille. 2007.
  • Beasts on Parchment: Picturing Animals in Medieval Manuscripts. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2010-2011.
Provenance Commissioned by Bishop Karapet, Poghoskan hermitage, 1193 [1]; Catholicos John VI [Katholikos Ohannes (Yovhannes VI)], before 1221; given to Smbat (nephew of Catholicos John VI), 1221 [2]. In the possession of Gevork', son of Nazluxan, in 1770, [3]; given to Khodja Hovannes (Yohannes), between 14th and 18th centuries; Monastery of St. Thomas, between 14th and 18th centuries [4]. Nazlu Khatun, 1770. Ter Hohannes, late 18th/early 19th century. New Nakhijevan, Armenia, before 1889 to after 1903. Henry Walters, Baltimore, after 1903; by bequest to Walters Art Museum, 1931. [1] see dedicatory inscription, fol. 12v and colophon [2] presented at the patriarchal see of Hromkla, see colophon, fol. 314v [3] see inscription on upper board [4] undated inscription on fol. 314r states that the manuscript was given to the Monastery of T'umay A?ak'eal (Apostle Thomas) in memory of Xawcay Yovanes, his brother Yulut'lu, father Inap, and mother Zatay
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters

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Creator
Period
1193
Medium
ink and pigments on well finished, medium-weight parchment, bound between wooden boards covered with leather, and metal plaques nailed on the upper cover
(Manuscripts & Rare Books)
Accession Number
W.538
Measurements
Overall H: 10 13/16 x W: 7 7/8 x D: 2 15/16 in. (27.5 x 20 x 7.5 cm); Folio H: 10 3/8 × W: 7 5/16 in. (26.4 × 18.5 cm)
Geographies
Location Within Museum
Not On View

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