Click here to skip to content

Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus, in John de Whethamstede's 'Granarium'

Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus, in John de Whethamstede's 'Granarium'

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1430

Shelfmark: Cotton MS Nero C VI

Item number: f.102r

Length: 34

Width: 22.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Twice abbot of St Albans (1420-1440, 1451-1465), John de Whethamstede called his four-volume compendium of history and classical literature the 'Granarium', a play on his name ('Wheathamstead') and on the 'kernels' of knowledge arranged alphabetically within it. Accused of neglecting his job because he spent so much time in pursuit of his studies and funds to beautify the monastery, he based his massive compendium on classical authors and the 14th-century Italian writer Boccacio. He was the first English author to write a history in a humanist style, although he shaped the mythological content to a moralising Christian purpose. The pages of the 'Granarium' manuscript are splendid with beautifully decorated capital letters, an extremely deluxe dictionary of ancient topics. On this page, the letter 'G' stands for Gaius, the Roman emperor who was better known as Caligula.

Search within this collection

Elsewhere on our websites

Newsletter

Latest events - register free online

Mobile app

For iPhone, iPad and Android

Report a Concern

What is the nature of your concern?

Report a Concern

What is the nature of your concern?

Email link to a friend

Write a brief note to accompany the email

Your friend's email address: