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Diagram Of The World, In Isidore's 'Etymologies'

Diagram Of The World, In Isidore's 'Etymologies'

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1190

Shelfmark: Royal MS 12 F.iv

Item number: f.135v

Length: 28.3

Width: 17.8

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Isidore of Seville (599-636) wrote probably the most famous and important encyclopaedia of the Middle Ages, the 'Etymologies', named after one of its constituent chapters. It is a compilation of all the knowledge that was available to Isidore, from a wide variety of sources. This manuscript has a 13th- or 14th-century flyleaf inscription stating that it belonged to the priory at Horsham St. Faith, Norfolk. One medieval conception of the world was that it was divided into three parts: Asia, Europe, and Africa. This was often represented by schematic maps in which a circle is divided unequally into three parts, with a 'T'-shaped gap between them.

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