Decorative Papers in the Dryden Album

The Dryden Album (R.14.23) is known for its beautiful images of Greek and Turkish costume but Susanne Krause, a paper decorator and researcher based in Hamburg, has recently drawn our attention to the fact that the interleaved papers in the album are also of special significance. When the album was catalogued in 1902, the interleaved …

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Manuscript Owners and a Newly-Identified Manuscript from the Austin Friars, London

Some medieval manuscripts will have had several owners and often information about these people can be found within the manuscripts themselves. This is often a simple statement of ownership such as that found at the bottom of folio 1 of manuscript B.15.1 which tells us that at one time it belonged to the Benedictine Cathedral …

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Commonplace Books and the Apocalypse: Anne Sadleir’s Manuscripts at Trinity

Anne Sadleir (1585-1670) is remembered as the woman who gave the famed Trinity Apocalypse (R.16.2) to the college. In some ways we know little about her: there is no surviving portrait and few biographical details exist. Anne was the eldest daughter of the prominent lawyer, Sir Edward Coke (1552–1634), who enrolled at Trinity but who …

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In celebration of Eid al-Fitr

This year, the Muslim festival of Eid al-Fitr begins on the evening of Tuesday 4th June. The festival marks the end of Ramadan, a month-long period of fasting and reflection. During Ramadan the Holy Qur’ān was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). This blog looks at two copies of the Qur’ān along with a book of Sufi …

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The Sidney Psalms and Mary Herbert, Countess of Pembroke

Trinity College Library owns two manuscripts catalogued by M.R. James as ‘Sidney’s Version of the Psalms’ (O.1.51) and ‘Sir Philip Sidney's Metrical Version of the Psalms’ (R.3.16). In fact, these metrical paraphrases were authored by both Philip Sidney and his sister, Mary. It was Philip’s early death in 1586 which allowed his sister to emerge, …

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Anglo-Saxon Manuscripts in Trinity College Library: Poems on the Cross, with a new kind of blue

The last of the five manuscripts lent by Trinity College to the British Library’s Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms exhibition is one of the most intriguing and visually appealing manuscripts in the Wren Library. B.16.3 is a collection of poems by one of the most talented writers of the ninth century, a monk named Hrabanus Maurus. Hrabanus (or …

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