The Joshua Roll: A Model Book Public Deposited

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  • April 28, 2022
  • Ouyang, Fannie
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Art and Art History, Art History
  • The Joshua Roll (Rome, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Pal. Gr. 431) is a Byzantine illuminated manuscript most commonly dated to the tenth century. It is often compared to the Bayeux Tapestry or Roman triumphal columns due to its continuous narrative format. Stylistically, it is compared to the Paris Psalter (Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, MS. gr. 139) because the two works display classical techniques. Scholars mostly discuss the roll regarding its contents – the illustrations and text – however, this thesis will shift the conversation towards the manuscript’s unusual scroll format, which had become uncommon by the tenth century. By this time, people had long since transitioned to the codex or book format. By conducting formal, iconographic, and contextual analyses, this paper will question the Joshua Roll’s role as an illuminated manuscript and propose an alternative function as a model book.
Date of publication
Resource type
  • Verkerk, Dorothy
  • Levine, Cary
  • String, Tatiana
  • Master of Arts
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2018

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