This is What a 14th Century Manuscript Looks Like When Heated

This is What a 14th Century Manuscript Looks Like When Heated

Here’s an example of a 14th century manuscript: Pope Innocent IV’s commentaries on the decretals of Gregory IX originally from St. Albans Abbey. It was damaged in the Ashburnham House fire in 1731 and since parchment is actually animal skin, when caught in a fire it “becomes crisp and wavy”.

There are some more images of what happens to parchment when caught in fire (one of a library’s greatest ‘security’ worries) here: Crisp as a Poppadom Medieval manuscripts blog.

Source: [Medieval manuscripts blog] and [Slideshare]

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Image | This entry was posted in Cool Document, European History, Medieval History, Modern History, Museum Artefact and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to This is What a 14th Century Manuscript Looks Like When Heated

  1. Trapper Gale says:

    It’s still amazing that it has survived this long, even in it’s “crisp and wavy” form.

  2. itwasjudith says:

    i wonder if that’s the same fire that once almost destroyed the last copy of Beowulf….

  3. Pingback: Unearthed: 20th May 2013 « The Archaeology of Tomb Raider

  4. I had no idea parchment was made out of animal skin! I learn so much from your blog!

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