In the 11th and 12th centuries, a distinctive subgroup of manuscripts appeared, mostly originating in Cyprus or Palestine. Additional 11836 is a fine example of this ‘decorative style’ of manuscript. Unusually, it combines in one volume the New Testament (excluding Revelation) and the Psalms of the Old Testament. It contains numerous illuminated miniatures, including portraits of Jesus, the Evangelists, and the authors of the Psalms and Odes.
Ownership inscriptions in the manuscript make clear its Cypriot origin. It came to England via Constantinople, and previously belonged to Samuel Butler (1774–1839), bishop of Lichfield. It was purchased by the British Museum along with the rest of Butler’s manuscript collection, which included 25 other Greek manuscripts, in 1841.