Saturday, April 2, 2016

Erbario

A 15th century illustrated herbal from Northern Italy with three styles of illustration: one group of illustrations following medieval conventions, sometimes with fantastic elements such as human faces, on recto pages through most of the manuscript; another, rougher but more generally somewhat more naturalistic group in ink outline, on verso pages or added alongside earlier color illustrations; and a third group of naturalistic color illustrations of plants including roots, leaves, flowers and fruit on verso pages. Approximately a quarter of the illustrations are accompanied by notes on medicinal properties and preparations of the plants, written in the same ink as the ink outline illustrations, mostly in Italian (the Italian usage suggests the text was written in the Veneto), but occasionally in Latin or a mix of both languages; the notes are written around and sometimes over the illustrations. - From the website of the Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries.