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Zoomorphic Initial, In Paul The Deacon's 'Homiliary'

Zoomorphic Initial, In Paul The Deacon's 'Homiliary'

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1110

Shelfmark: Harley MS 1918

Item number: f.1r

Length: 35.5

Width: 25.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated Manuscript

Paul the Deacon (720-799) is known mainly for his writings as a historian, but he also composed a commentary on the Rule of St. Benedict, and this widely used collection of homilies. Although it was perhaps written and decorated in Normandy, this manuscript was at Glastonbury Abbey by the end of the Middle Ages.

The manuscript opens with a fine (though now rubbed and oxidised) initial formed of a dragon and foliage. The inscription in reddish ink in the lower margin states that it is from Glastonbury Abbey, and names 'Robertus Wottone', one of its monks.

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