Before the arrival of printing, all documents and books were manuscripts.


Manuscripts are documents written by hand, they maybe in book form, scrolls, or in codex format. They are written on vellum (animal skins), parchment, or paper. Manuscripts can be illuminated and/or rubricated. Illuminated manuscripts are a manuscript in which the text is supplemented with decorations such as marginalia (borders), illustrations, and initials.  Illuminated manuscripts can include silver or gold as well as several different colors. Rubricated manuscripts are manuscripts supplemented with red ink and sometimes blue or green ink. Rubricated manuscripts decorations are generally initials and or annotations made in the margins of the text.


The Remnant Trust has several manuscripts and manuscript leaves in is collection, including those that are illuminated and rubricated dating as early as 1250. Below are some  manuscripts that are in our collection:

De Consolatio Philosophie by Boethius

Date of Manuscript: ca. 1400-1425Boethius’s best known work is the Consolation of Philosophy (De consolatione philosophiae),which he wrote most likely while in exile under house arrest or in prison while awaiting his execution, but his lifelong project was a...

Opuscula by John Chrysostom

Date of Manuscript: ca. 1450-65            Humanist manuscript compilation of three short treaties on the virtues of the ascetics life by St. John Chrysostom, transcribed into Latin in northern Italy and pre-dating the printed editions. The author of the translation...

Nichomachean Ethics by Aristotle

Date of Manuscript: 1488This rubricated manuscript in the Latin translation of Leonardo Bruni, the first Florentine scholar to use the word “studia humanitatis” as a term for literary studies was used in grammar schools. This couples with the large number of...