This manuscript contains the first book of Herodotus’ Histories. It is written on paper and dates from some time before 1449, since an ownership inscription from that year is on f. 60r. It contains marginal notes in both Greek and Latin.
In later centuries it made its way to the Jesuit College in Agen (France), and ultimately to the Harley Collection, which forms one of the foundation collections of the British Library.
The Histories of Herodotus (c. 484-c. 425 BCE) is the earliest extant historical narrative. Written in the second half of the 5th century BCE, it aims to describe and explain the long history of conflict between Greeks and non-Greeks, culminating in the Graeco-Persian Wars of the early 5th century. As the ‘Father of History’, Herodotus’ influence on later writers of history was significant. Both he and Thucydides (c. 460-c. 400 BCE) were important models for writers of history in Byzantium.