Documents: 207, displayed: 161 - 180

Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer

The Fondation Martin Bodmer is one of the most important private libraries in the world. It seeks to reflect the “adventure of the human spirit” since the beginning of writing; in this it follows the example of its founder Martin Bodmer, who sought to set up a “library of world literature.” The collection comprises about 160,000 items, hundreds of Western and Eastern manuscripts, Egyptian Books of the Dead, 270 incunabula including a rare exemplar of the Gutenberg Bible, autographs by Goethe, Einstein and Mozart...

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 182
Parchment · 81 ff. · 29 x 21.5 cm · Germany (Tegernsee?) · 11th / 12th century
Adnotationes super Lucanum

This manuscript contains the Adnotationes super Lucanum, preceded by the Vita Lucani by Vacca, a grammarian from late antiquity whom some date to the 6th-century. The codex probably was created in the Benedictine Abbey Tegernsee in Bavaria and later was part of the library of the Princes of Oettingen-Wallerstein. As codex Wallersteinensis I.2, this text, together with four other textual witnesses, is the basis for the 1909 edition by Johannes Endt, which is still considered the reference edition today. (ber)

Online Since: 12/17/2015

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 183
Parchment · 7 ff. · 48.5-75.5 x 15.5-18.2 cm · England or France (?) · middle of the 13th century
Peter of Poitiers, Compendium historiae in genealogia Christi

The historical-biblical compilation by Peter of Poitiers (around 1130-1205), the Compendium historiae in genealogia Christi, was very widely used during the last centuries of the Middle Ages. Like many other examplars of this text, this copy was written on a parchment scroll, but at an unknown date it was cut into 7 parts. Figurative medallions and schemata, most of them genealogical, cover the entire work and thus represent a continuous line of world history, from the Fall of Man (f. 1) to the Christmas story (f. 5). (rou)

Online Since: 10/08/2020

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 184
Parchment · (1) + 54 + (2) ff. · 19.5 x 11.5 cm · Florence · 15th century, around 1482-1485
Maximos Planudes, Vita Aesopi

A luxurious copy of the Life of Aesop, part historical and part legendary, that was compiled around 1300 by Maximos Planudes. These pages once constituted the first part of a manuscript of Aesop's Fables , which today is held primarily in New York. It was written in Florence between 1482 and 1485 by Démétrios Damilas, one of the main scribes at the court of the Medici, for Lorenzo the Magnificent’s young son Piero II de' Medici, who was 10-12 years old at the time. On the splendid frontispiece one can recognize the portraits of Planudes and Piero II. (and)

Online Since: 12/17/2015

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 186
Parchment · I + 117 ff. · 20.5 x 13 cm · Italy · 15th century
Festus Pompeius, De verborum significatu

The text De verborum significatu by the Latin grammarian Pompeius Festus is an extremely valuable dictionary of Latin language and mythology for those seeking to understand the world of the Romans. This manuscript is of Italian origin and retains its contemporary binding with a wooden cover. It was written during the 15th century on parchment and contains lovely gilded initials on a blue and red background. Quotations have been added in the margins to explain certain words in the text. The last leaves in the volume contain excerpts from Greek and Latin authors. (jos)

Online Since: 06/02/2010

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 187
Parchment · 597 ff. · 18.3 x 15 cm · France · middle or second half of the 13th century
The Rothschild-Bible

Exemplar of the so-called Parisian Bible, a pocket Bible which contains the entire text of the Old and the New Testaments in a relatively small format in two columns in small script. The codex was produced around the middle or in the second half of the 13th century in Central or Eastern France. It is distinguished and made luxurious by no fewer than 82 historiated initials and 66 ornamental initials. Noteworthy is the fact that the biblical text shows signs of careful correction and that the psalms are divided into smaller sections according to a scheme, which rules out that it was commissioned by a monastery, but suggests instead that it was commissioned by a secular priest or a layperson. An erased note of ownership suggests that in 1338 this manuscript belonged to the Celestine Monastery Notre-Dame of Ternes (Limoges), perhaps a gift from its founder Roger le Fort, who was the son of the Lord of Ternes and was Archbishop of Bourges in 1343. Before this Bible became part of the collection of Martin Bodmer, it belonged to the collection of Baron Edmond de Rothschild (1845-1935), hence the name “Rothschild-Bibel.” (ber)

Online Since: 12/17/2015

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 188
Parchment · 33 ff. · 21 x 13.6 cm · Western Germany (Rhineland) · around 1230
William of Conches, Dragmaticon, and the Compotus, Texts on Science and Astronomy

This manuscript contains the Dragmaticon, a work by the scholar Wilhelm de Conches, a member of the School of Chartres. It is possible that the codex was produced in about 1230 in the area of Cologne in a scholastic circle and that it is among the oldest surviving texts of the Dragmaticon, which is transmitted in a total of about 70 medieval manuscripts. The portable format, assorted schemata and tables provided, and the script used (Gothic cursive) indicate that the manuscript was intended for university use. The first section of the manuscript contains a computus for determining when movable feast days should fall. (fmb)

Online Since: 05/20/2009

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 189
Parchment · II + 148 + III ff. · 22.3 x 14 cm · France · around 1310
Les Vœux du paon [by Jacques de Longuyon]

In about 1310 the Bishop of Liège, Thibaut de Bar, commissioned Jacques de Longuyon to write the Vœux du paon, which extends the tradition of the Alexander romance. Thirteen miniatures and a number of filigreed initials adorn the alexandrine monorhyme stanzas of the poem. (fmb)

Online Since: 03/25/2009

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 501
Paper · 21 ff. · 33.5 x 21.6 cm · Bukhara · 1559
"Sentences of Ali"

This manuscript, written in Persian, contains a selection of the “One Hundred Sayings by Ali,” a collection of sayings and proverbs traditionally attributed to Ali ibn Abi Talib, the fourth rightly guided Caliph as well as cousin and son-in-law of the prophet Muhammad. Among the Shiites (from šīʿat ʿAlī, the “party of Ali"), Ali plays an important religious role as the first imam. This manuscript was written in 1559 by the calligrapher Jalal ibn Muhammad in Bukhara. For the text he used the Nastaliq script, a calligraphic script widely used for the Persian-Arabic alphabet; for the titles, however, he used the ordinary Arabic Nasḫī script. The six full-page miniatures, highlighted in gold, were added in the second/third quarter of the 17th century. Noteworthy on p. 9v at bottom center is the rare depiction of a figure turning his back to the observer, of whom one can see only the back of the head. On the same page at the left, behind several musicians, two Europeans can be recognized by their clothing. (wid)

Online Since: 06/25/2015

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 550
Paper · 56 ff. · 24.1 x 15.2 cm · [India] · 1623/24
“The story of Seyf ol-Molûk and Badî`ol-Jamâl"

This manuscript, written in Persian, contains the story of Prince Seyf ol-Molûk and Princess Badî`ol-Jamâl. The manuscript was probably written in India and illustrated with 32 miniatures. At the end of the text (f. 56v), the scribe dated the manuscript in the year 1033 (in the Islamic calendar). The story can also be found in One Thousand and One Nights (758th to 778th night, edition Calcutta II 1839-1842). (wid)

Online Since: 10/07/2013

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 600a
Paper · 74 pp. · 31.6 x 20.4 cm · Japan · 1596-1615
The Life of Buddha, first book (Shaka no Honji, jō)

The book belongs to the category of nara ehon, a type of polychrome, illustrated narratives published from the Muromachi period though to the first half of the Edo period. The term nara ehon has been widely applied to all illustrated books from these periods since the Meiji era, but its origin is unclear. The format of nara ehon differs, depending on the period. Early examples from the Momoyama to the very early Edo period are tall, measuring about 30 cm in height, a vertical format similar to a European quarto. The examples produced from the Kanei era onwards, within the first half of the Edo period were more of a horizontal proportion. They were also generally based on the genre of otogizōshi, short stories that emerged from the Kamakura period onwards, a majority of them focusing on the Muromachi period. During the latter half of the 17th century, the topic shifted to stories about the aristocracy or the wealthy merchant class, before the popularity nara ehon began to decline. This example can possibly dated to the Keichō era (1596-1615). (stn)

Online Since: 06/23/2016

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 600b
Paper · 78 pp. · 31.5 x 20.5 cm · Japan · 1596-1615
The Life of Buddha, second book (Shaka no Honji, ge)

The book belongs to the category of nara ehon, a type of polychrome, illustrated narratives published from the Muromachi period though to the first half of the Edo period. The term nara ehon has been widely applied to all illustrated books from these periods since the Meiji era, but its origin is unclear. The format of nara ehon differs, depending on the period. Early examples from the Momoyama to the very early Edo period are tall, measuring about 30 cm in height, a vertical format similar to a European quarto. The examples produced from the Kanei era onwards, within the first half of the Edo period were more of a horizontal proportion. They were also generally based on the genre of otogizōshi, short stories that emerged from the Kamakura period onwards, a majority of them focusing on the Muromachi period. During the latter half of the 17th century, the topic shifted to stories about the aristocracy or the wealthy merchant class, before the popularity nara ehon began to decline. This example can possibly dated to the Keichō era (1596-1615). (stn)

Online Since: 06/23/2016

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 601a
Paper · 57 ff. · 24.1 x 18 cm · 17th century
Tale of Ise, first book (Ise Monogatari, jō)

The Tale of Ise is one of the earliest and most well-known example of uta monogatari, a subgenre of the monogatari, which focuses on waka poetry with the narrative evolving around the poetry. Its authorship, as well as the exact date of composition remain unclear, but it is today dated to the early Heian period. It is also known by the title "Zaigo chūjō nikki", or "Diaries of the Prince Ariwara no Narihira". The main character in the Tale of Ise is understood as being the historical prince and poet Ariwara no Narihira (9th century), whose waka feature in the tale. Yet due to the existence of narratives that clearly date to later periods, Narihira himself cannot be regarded as the author. The tale is generally concerned with human affection of many kinds, from amorous affairs to parental affection. Whilst many chapters do have a strong aristocratic notion, it is not limited to the world of nobility, but also includes the commoner’s fate, such as Chapter 23 Tsutsuizutsu. The characters often remain unnamed and are only referred to as ‘the girl’, or ‘the man’. Thus, the tale is interpretable as an effort to generally address the topic of human relationship and affection. This example bound in silk is adorned with illustrations executed in ink, polychromy and gold. (stn)

Online Since: 06/23/2016

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 601b
Paper · 48 ff. · 24 x 18 cm · 17th century
Tale of Ise, second book (Ise Monogatari, ge)

The Tale of Ise is one of the earliest and most well-known example of uta monogatari, a subgenre of the monogatari, which focuses on waka poetry with the narrative evolving around the poetry. Its authorship, as well as the exact date of composition remain unclear, but it is today dated to the early Heian period. It is also known by the title "Zaigo chūjō nikki", or "Diaries of the Prince Ariwara no Narihira". The main character in the Tale of Ise is understood as being the historical prince and poet Ariwara no Narihira (9th century), whose waka feature in the tale. Yet due to the existence of narratives that clearly date to later periods, Narihira himself cannot be regarded as the author. The tale is generally concerned with human affection of many kinds, from amorous affairs to parental affection. Whilst many chapters do have a strong aristocratic notion, it is not limited to the world of nobility, but also includes the commoner’s fate, such as Chapter 23 Tsutsuizutsu. The characters often remain unnamed and are only referred to as ‘the girl’, or ‘the man’. Thus, the tale is interpretable as an effort to generally address the topic of human relationship and affection. This example bound in silk is adorned with illustrations executed in ink, polychromy and gold. (stn)

Online Since: 06/23/2016

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 603
Paper · 1 f. · 23.6 x 883 cm · very likely 12th century
Daihannya-haramitta-kyō, kan gohyaku-yonjū (Sutra of Great Wisdom Chapter 540)

The handscroll of Daihannya-haramitta-kyō, the Sutra of Great Wisdom, chapter five hundred and forty, consists of a simple sheet of paper without mounting. The complete version of the sutra encompasses six-hundred chapters. It was introduced to China from India by the monk, scholar and translator Xuanzang, who translated the sutra into Chinese in the 7th century before it was imported into Japan. The sutra is written in black ink on high-quality paper, very likely kōzo-shi, which is made using the fibre of Broussonetia papyrifera or paper mulberry tree, especially treasured and used for important documents during the early periods of Japanese history such as the Nara and Heian periods. There is a circular red seal placed over the top of the first four lines of the text, stating “Yakushi-ji-in” (seal of the temple Yakushi-ji). The sutra was written in Japan within the context of the religious rites of reproducing holy scripture to benefit the karma. (stn)

Online Since: 06/23/2016

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 701
Paper · XI + 200 + IX ff. · 34.8 x 28 cm · Punjab (North-Western India) · 18th century
Bhāgavatapurāṇa, book 10

This is a Panjabi adaptation of the 10th book of the Bhāgavatapurāṇa, in Punjabi/Braj language, in Gurmukhī script. It is a collection of stories of the life of the god Kṛṣṇa, written in verse (caupaī, kabitā, soraṭhā and others). Contrary to the Sanskrit version, the text has no clear chapter structures and has a continuous numeration (880 verses). It is richly illustrated with scenes from the life of the god Kṛṣṇa (more than 200 miniatures), and it is a free verse rendering of the ancient Sanskrit text that was written in ślokas (shlokas), which was extremely popular in India. (ser)

Online Since: 03/22/2018

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 703
Paper · IV + 58 + V ff. · 11.7 x 16.2 cm · Rajasthan · 19th century
Collection of poems

The manuscript, written in modern Devanāgarī script, contains a series of extracts of poems on Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa and on nāyikās and nāyakas (heroes and heroines), demonstrating various states and stages of erotic love. Two compositions mention in their colophons the authors or compilers, Rājānāgarī Dāsa (f. 55v) and the Venerable Kuvara Phakīra Siṃha - Kubar Fakīr Singh in hindi spelling (f. 58v). The manuscript is illustrated: five pictures feature Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa (f. 1v, 10r, 26v, 33r and 37v), and two others depict young people in love (f. 52r, 52v). The poems are of different forms, namely, copaī/caupaī, dohā, aralli, and soraṭha. Each of these has a fixed number of lines, syllables per line and other metric specifications. This style was very popular in Northwestern India from about the 18th century onwards. The manuscript was the property of Oliver Henry Perkins (front pastedown), before entering the Bodmer collection at an unknown date. (ser)

Online Since: 03/22/2018

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 704
Paper · IV + 165 + IX ff. · 7.5 x 12.5 cm · first half of the 18th century
Bhagavadgītā and subsidiary texts

This manuscript comprises a collection of four different texts. The main text is the Bhagavadgītā ("Song of the Lord"), a part of the Mahābhārata epic, book 6, which consists of 18 chapters, written here in Devanāgarī in a Kashmiri-influenced style (f. 1v-165r). It is one of the most copied texts in the Hindu tradition and survives in a huge number of manuscripts. Painted portraits of Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna alternate in opening its 18 chapters. The Bhagavadgītā is preceded by the Prayāgatīrthasnānasaṃkalpa, apadoddhāraṇastotra (V2r-V4v),"a promise to take bath at Prayāga (Allahabad)", and followed by the Pañcavaktrahanumatkavaca (N1v-N7v), a protective mantra of Hanuman, and finally the Stavarāja (N8r-N8v), a "king of praises", serving also as a sort of colophon to the whole collection of these miscellaneous texts. These three subsidiary texts are all written in common Devanāgarī script. A partly readable note dated 29 August 1781 identifies the manuscript as a “prayer book of a bramin [i.e. brahmin]” given to the unidentified possessor of the manuscript “on his departure from India” (V1r). (ser)

Online Since: 03/22/2018

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 706
Paper · 121 ff. · 11 x 27.5 cm · likely Gujarat · 15th century (?)
Kalpasūtra, i.e. "Book of rituals"

This unbound manuscript contains one of the most copied texts of the Śvetāmbara Jaina tradition, the Kalpasūtra, which was very popular all over India from the 14th century on. It is a collection of life stories of the great Tīrthaṅkāras. The present manuscript, written in Devanāgarī script, begins with the life of Mahāvīra Jīna, and continues with the biography of Pārśvanātha and Neminātha. The text is incomplete, missing folios 32, 85, 97, 103, and 125, which contained paintings that were sold separately. Their subject, however, can be restored through comparison with similar manuscripts. The paintings still in the manuscript (1v, 7r, 9v, 16v, 17v, 21r, 45v, 47v, 51r, 58r, 62v, 70r, 71v, 72v, 77v, 78r, 81v, 92r) depict the most important events of the lives of the Kalpasūtra’s figures. Based on the painting style, the manuscript is close to the 15th century. (ser)

Online Since: 03/22/2018

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 708
Paper · 82 ff. · 21 x 31 cm · Northern India, likely around Kedarnath · between 1700 and 1800, likely towards 1800
Kedārakalpa

This is an 18th century manuscript of the text called Kedārakalpa, representing itself as a part of the Nandīpurāṇa. The manuscript describes and depicts in its 61 exquisite miniature paintings a religious pilgrimage in Himalayas, Kedarnath region, as done by a group of yogis. It is a śaiva text, i.e. main deity is god Śiva, and the main purpose of the text is to incite people to go on that sacred śaiva pilgrimage. (ser)

Online Since: 06/22/2017

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Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 709
Paper · III + 476 + II ff. · 9.3 x 14.5 cm · Kashmir and Vṛṇdavan · 1776 or 1777
Collection of texts related to the worship of Viṣṇu

This is a composite manuscript, written in Devanāgarī script bearing the influence of the Kashmiri style, bringing together a number of ritual texts dealing with the worship of Viṣṇu. 1. (ff. 1_1r-1_6r) preparatory texts and rituals (without a single name or title), starting with a likely Pāñcarātra-influenced set of ritual practices, namely, nyāsas, and dhyānas, i.e. assignment of deities, and syllables to various parts of the body and the visualisation of the main deity. 2. (ff. 1_6r-1_149v) Bhagavadgīta: the main text in this miscellaneous collection. The Bhagavadgītā ("Song of the Lord" - Viṣṇu/ Kṛṣṇa), which is a part of the Mahābhārata, book 6 from 18, is one of the most copied texts in the Hindu tradition, and this part of the Mahābhārata epic survives in a huge number of manuscripts. 3. (ff. 2_1r-2_107v) Copies of other parts of the Mahābhārata, Śāntiparvaṇ, which all are related to Viṣṇu. 4. (ff. 3_1r-6_31v) 2 parts of Pāñcarātrika Sanatkumārasaṃhitā, dealing with the praise of Viṣṇu, plus mantras including (ff. 4_1r-4_21r) Pāṇḍavagītāstotra, (ff. 5_1r-5_20v) Gopālapaṭala, (ff. 6_1r-6_23r) Gopālalaghupaddhati and other texts. 5. (ff. 7_1r-7_37v) Parts of the tantras, a. Saṃmohanatantra, dealing with the praise of Viṣṇu, i.e. Gopālasahasranāmastrotra; b. Gautamītantra, the part called Gopālastavarāja. 6. (ff. 8_1r-10_8r) Two different texts: 1. Niṃbarkakavaca, which is a production of the Nimbarka worship lineage of Vaiṣṇavas. 2. Part of ritual texts of Sāmaveda, dealing with the 5 saṃskāras, plus various vedic mantras, such as Gāyatrī, in its vaiṣṇava forms. 7. (ff. 11_1r-11_11v) Part of the Bhaviṣyotarapurāṇa dealing with the worship of the stones related to Viṣṇu from the Gaṇḍakī river (common name is shaligram). The manuscript contains 3 illuminated titles and 12 miniatures, most of which depict Kṛṣṇa. According to the colophon (ff. 11_11v-11_12r), the text was written in Kashmir, in a monastery called Ahalyamath, in 1833 Saṃvat, that is 1776 or 1777 CE, by a person called Gaṇeśa[bhaṭṭa?] Nandarāma. The second part of the colophon (partially missing), however, links the history of the manuscript to Vrindavan. (ser)

Online Since: 06/14/2018

Documents: 207, displayed: 161 - 180