Pieces of parchment in Utrecht

Cover "Perkament in stukken"On September 20, 2018, the Utrecht Archives (Het Utrechts Archief) opened the exhibition Perkament in stukken [Parchment in pieces] with medieval manuscript fragments from both this institution and the Special Collections of Utrecht University Library. The exhibition and a book about these fragments are the fruit of close cooperation of both institutions. The project came into existence thanks to archivist Henk Hovenkamp who did research on a number of archival records with parchment covers containing medieval texts at a regional archive, the Streekarchivariaat Noordwest-Veluwe at Harderwijk. He got in touch with Bart Jaski, curator of manuscripts at Utrecht University Library. Jaski helped to determine the texts and origin of the fragments in Harderwijk, and started to organize a yearly seminar for students of medieval culture to investigate and describe fragments at Utrecht University Library, soon joined by students of medieval history led by Marco Mostert.

As an archivist at Het Utrecht Archief (HUA) Hovenkamp continued his attention to reused manuscript fragments, crowned with the discovery of the very rare manuscript fragment of De trinitate by the third-century bishop Novatian used a cover on HUA, Kapittel van St. Marie, inv. no. 406, a register with resolutions of the States of Guelders and decisions of the ducal council between 1475 and 1547. Mostert, Jaski and their students came to inspect this register and other archival records with traces of manuscript fragments or indeed wrapped into parchment.

The title of the exhibition and the book is a pun in Dutch on the word stukken. The pieces (stukken) of parchment often cover archival records, archiefstukken. In the exhibition and the accompanying book which aims at a general public you will mainly find articles written by former students, but a number of medievalists contributed artciles as well. Bart Jaski, Marco Mostert and Kaj van Vliet, head archivist of the HUA, provided introductory chapters. Mostert gives a concise history of resarch into medieval fragments and an overview of results in print and a number of current projects. Van Vliet looks at archival collections at the HUA with more fragments, and he compares the presence of manuscripts genres in fragments stemming from collegiate chapters in Utrecht with the collection of the St. Paul’s abbey. Els Rose wrote an introduction to liturgical manuscripts, Bram van den Hoven van Genderen contributed an article about a reused papal charter, and Janneke Raaijmakers wrote about a florilegium with texts about saints. Each article shows splendid photographs of fragments. The articles have been grouped around the themes Bible, liturgy, music, theology, law, science, medicine, history, hagiography and literature, with a closing section about material aspects. The fragment of Novatian figures in the contribution of Marian de Heer and Ria Paroubek-Groenewoud, ‘Tegenpaus in Utrecht’ (pp. 110-113).

Glosses appear in a number of articles. I contributed an article about the glosses of the Digest fragment UB Utrecht, ms. fr. 7.67, the very subject of this blog [‘Vroege juridische glossen. Commentaar naast en tussen de regels’ [Early legal glosses. Comments next to and between the lines] (pp. 134-139). The volumes contains articles about a glossed fragment of the Decretales Gregorii IX, probably written in Toulouse [UB Utrecht, ms. fr. 3.90], a book within its inside cover the Antidotarium Nicolai, a medical treatise [UB Utrecht, Thomaasse RAR 1-54], and a glossed fragment of Lucanus’ Pharsalia [UB Utrecht, ms. fr. 7.35]. On the cover of the book an image of UB Utrecht, ms. fr. 4.69 is shown, a thirteenth-century Codex Justinianus with the glossa ordinaria, and there are illustrations of glossed fragments of the Liber Extra and the Decretum Gratiani as well.

The significance of this cooperation between an archive and a university library in this exhibition and book is shown also by the two articles about a Middle Dutch astronomical treatise from the fourteenth century, the Natuurkunde van het Geheelal [Physics of the Universe]. Femke van Hilten wrote an article about the fragment UB Utrecht, ms. fr. 3.4, discovered in 2012. To this article I could add a notice about another fragment of the same treatise I identified early 2017 at the Utrecht Archives [HUA, Handschriften zonder signaturen, inv.no. 26-14]. It has not been possible to show in the exhibition all fragments discussed in this volume. Many more fragments in Utrecht await further investigation and description. The manuscripts and fragments at Museum Catharijneconvent have been systematically described in the catalogue edited by the late Peter Gumbert and his team [Illustrated Inventory of Medieval Manuscripts in Latin script in the Netherlands I: Utrecht, Museum Catharijneconvent (Hilversum 2011)].

Perkament in stukken. Teruggevonden middeleeuwse handschriftfragmenten, Bart Jaski, Marco Mostert and Kaj van Vliet (eds.) (Hilversum: Verloren, 2018; Middeleeuwse Studies en Bronnen, 171; 280 p.; ISBN 978-90-8704-742-9)
Perkament in stukken – Het Utrechts Archief, Hamburgerstraat 28, Utrecht – September 21, 2018 until January 30, 2019

 

 
Zusammenfassung

In diesem Beitrag geht es um eine Ausstellung mit Fragmenten mittelalterlicher Handschriften des Utrechters Archivs und der Universitätsbibliothek Utrecht. Zu dieser Ausstellung gehört auch ein Sammelband mit Aufsatzen, öfter aus Seminararbeiten entstanden. Verschiedene Fragmente sinds glossiert.

Sommaire

Il s’agit dans ce billet d’une exposition aux Archives d’Utrecht en coopération avec la bibliothèque universitaire d’Utrecht qui montre seulement des fragments manuscrits du Moyen Âge. Il y a paru aussi une volume avec des contributions sur ces fragments, beaucoup des eux le fruit des travaux des étudiants. On trouve des gloses dans un nombre des fragments.

Samenvatting

Deze bijdrage betreft de tentoonstelling bij Het Utrechts Archief en de gelijknamige bundel over fragmenten van middeleeuwse handschriften uit Het Utrechts Archief en de Universiteitsbibliotheek Utrecht. Verschillende bijdragen zijn de vrucht van seminars met studenten. Een aantal fragmenten bevat ook glossen.


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