The Egbert Psalter

The Egbert Psalter Date: c. 980 Place of Production: Reichenau Description: The psalter (a book containing the psalms) was given to Egbert, archbishop of Trier (975-993). It contains a calendar and a psalter. The manuscript holds several full-paged portraits of archbishops of Trier. It was illuminated in Reichenau, one of the most rich and creative centres in the…

The Egbert Codex

The Egbert Codex Date: Late tenth century Place of Production: Reichenau Description: This gospel book was commissioned by archbishop Egbert of Trier (975-993) and contains one of the most elaborate collections of miniature drawings illutrating the life of Christ. The codex holds the Gospel readings throughout the ecclesiastical year, and it has 60 illuminated pages and 140 decorated…

Source Translation: King Henry the Fowler frees the priest Baldmunt from slavery, 11 August 926

Henry I, known as ‘The Fowler’, was the first ruler of the new Ottonian dynasty (named after his son Otto I). His rule is often seen as a new phase in East Frankish kingship, distinct both from the members of the Carolingian dynasty whom he followed and that of his son Otto I.  On 11…

The Liber iudicum popularis and the blending of Visigothic and Frankish legal culture in Catalonia in the early 11th century

When it formed the heart of the Carolingian marca Hispania just after 800, Catalonia had spent over 200 years under Visigothic rule, followed by 80 years under Arab dominion. With Catalonia’s new position as a frontier region, the counts of Barcelona attained a higher degree of political independence from France in the process of the Carolingian…

Good King Wenceslas? Royal Justice in the Tenth Century (Part I)

The Bohemian Duke Wenceslas has been closely associated with Christmas ever since 1853, when John Mason Neale set his ‘Good King Wenceslas’ to the tune of a medieval spring carol. Despite Neale’s effort being described as ‘ridiculous’, ‘doggerel’ and ‘poor’ by critics of the time, it has become a ubiquitous part of December for many,…

The Christmas messages of tenth-century bishops

Later this month, heads of state throughout the world will deliver their Christmas messages, which tend to stress reconciliation and unity, but can also, more rarely, contain words of admonition and even invective. Although the modern ‘Christmas message’ given by heads of state on national television is a relatively recent invention, the feast has been…

Liturgy Matters

Last week I made my first visit to the current British Library exhibition, Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms: Art, Word, War. My first, but I hope not my last: it brings together such a wealth of written material, alongside other artefacts, that it’s hard to maintain proper scholarly decorum when faced with so many manuscripts, familiar from scholarship,…

Conference Report: Oliba de Vic. Un bisbe de mil anys enrere/ Oliba of Vic. A Bishop One Thousand Years Ago

Organisers: Prof. Dr. Matthias M. Tischler (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona/ICREA), Mn. Robert Baró Cabrera (Ateneu Universitati Sant Pacià) and Dr. Marc Sureda i Jubany (Museu Episcopal de Vic) Date, Place: 8.–10. 11. 2018, Barcelona, Bellaterra and Vic Report by Ekaterina Novokhatko, Institut d’Estudis Medievals, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, e-mail: Ekaterina.Novokhatko@uab.cat Questions on European identity and…