Sacred history and Christian kingship in the León Bible of 960 Public Deposited

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  • March 22, 2019
  • Black, Krysta L.
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Art and Art History
  • The scholarly history of the León Bible of 960 [León, Archivo Capitular, Real Colegiata de San Isidoro, MS 2] is predominantly concerned with the pictorial antecedents from which the manuscript was believed to have derived. Retaining a purportedly ancient format of illustration ultimately derived from scrolls, the Bible of 960's system of illumination has inspired investigation into its diverse Latin and Byzantine sources. While the search for pictorial sources is a significant aspect of iconographic inquiry, and as such is a useful methodology for examining the visual repertoire available to a given scriptorium, it is in some cases unable to satisfactorily document the character of the manuscript. This dissertation attempts to deploy an alternative methodology in which the pictorial program, rather than iconographic particularities, is the primary subject of examination. By considering the Bible of 960's miniatures as elements within a larger program of illustration, this study suggests that rather than serving as predominantly literal visual analogues to the biblical text, the illustrations, particularly those of Exodus and Kings were chosen to correspond, at least in part, to a more cohesive exegetical significance related to both the Mozarabic liturgy and popular exegesis, such as Beatus of Liébana's Commentarius in Apocalypsin. In examining the relationship between the Bible of 960's program of illustration and the exegetical and liturgical traditions available to its scribes, especially those related to the Easter season, I hope to reinvigorate the scholarly conversation regarding early peninsular Bible illustration, its relationship to other genres or manuscript illumination, and the potential connections to contemporary liturgical practice. Using the Bible of 960's program of illustration, I also examine how the manuscript may have stood as a deluxe production at the intersection between sacred and secular interests.
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  • In Copyright
  • Verkerk, Dorothy
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Graduation year
  • 2014

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