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Illuminated Initial, In A Volume Of The Works Of John Of Salisbury f.210r

Illuminated Initial, In A Volume Of The Works Of John Of Salisbury f.210r

Medium: Ink, pigments and gold on vellum

Date: 1175

Shelfmark: Royal MS 13 D.iv

Item number: f.210r

Length: 37.5

Width: 28

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

John of Salisbury (c.1115-1180) was an exceptionally well-educated and well-connected historian and philosopher, who knew King Henry II, Thomas Becket, and Pope Adrian IV intimately. He dedicated his most important writings to Becket, and witnessed his martyrdom in 1170. The present manuscript of his collected works was written at the abbey of St. Albans. This page has the start of the 'Entheticus', written in about 1155-1157. This manuscript written before 1183, and John died in 1180, so it is quite likely that it was written within his lifetime, not long after the text had been composed. The fact that the text is in verse has required a page layout slightly different from the rest of the volume, and the short lines of each verse create a different overall visual impression.

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