Book of Kells

One of the highlights of a trip to Dublin for any bibliophile is a visit to the magnificent Trinity College Library. And the most popular attraction in the library is the amazing 9th century Book of Kells. The devotional text contains the four Gospels of the New Testament. The manuscript’s text was copied onto calf vellum by expert scribes, probably on the Scottish island of Iona. The illuminations are some of the most significant of the period. Known as Insular or Hiberno-Saxon illumination, this style was produced Britain and Ireland the Dark Ages. It is characterized by intricate patterns and colorful images.

 

Now transparencies of the 680 pages have been rescanned in high resolution so you can zoom and scroll throughout the Book of Kells. You can learn about the symbolism of the elaborate decoration in the video below.

 

 

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