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13
Dec

Manuscripts from the National Library of the Czech Republic and the Slavonic Library

The continued digitisation of the codices from the National Library of the Czech Republic mainly focused on the medieval parts of the shelf marks IV and V. In terms of content, they are dominated by theological works; the Biblical exegesis is represented e.g. by commentaries by Nicholas of Lyra (IV.G.17, V.B.19, V.C.6, V.C.14), Robert Holcot (V.B.12) and Haimo of Auxerre (V.C.9, V.C.19); several volumes contain various commentaries on the key theological handbook of the Middle Ages, the Sentences of Peter Lombard (IV.H.21, IV.H.23, V.A.22, V.A.26). The codices further comprise works on philosophy (commentaries on Aristotle’s writings, copied or taught at the Prague university) or those used in pastoral and confessional practice (confessional works, summae confessorum, by Thomas of Chobham and Bartholomew of San Concordio). Natural sciences are the subject of e.g. the book on medicine from the turn of the 14th century that belonged to the master of the Prague university Jan Ondřej called Šindel (meaning ‘Shingle’, IV.F.20), volumes on astronomy (IV.G.10 and V.A.11) and a poem on the medicinal effects of plants Macer Floridus, accompanied by a commentary (IV.G.9). Several volumes include liturgical and preaching texts as well. Historiographic works are represented by the chronicle of an unknown monk of Erfurt (IV.H.25); a manuscript from the monastery in Zlatá Koruna contains a popular collection of hagiographies, Legenda Aurea by Jacobus de Voragine (XIII.C.15). The collection of texts by the Humanist Bohuslaus of Lobkowicz and Hassenstein (I.D.3) comes from the turn of the 16th century. Apart from the manuscripts, the digitised works also comprise five fragments from the 14th and 15th centuries, including i.a. instruments of notaries public, concerning legal and property issues (XXIV.A.57, XXIV.A.226), and fragments of judicial acts of the Prague consistory (XXIV.A.6). A separate group is formed by eight manuscripts from the 17th–19th centuries from the collections of the Slavonic Library. They are mostly written in Church Slavonic, but also in Croatian, Italian and Latin. Besides liturgical and religious texts, they include biographies and writings on heraldry as well.

13
Dec

Documents from the National Library of Medicine in Prague

The National Library of Medicine in Prague digitised six volumes in 2019. A half of them are Czech-written manuscript medical collections or their parts, mostly coming from the second half of the 18th century. They predominantly contain medical recipes, but also texts on bloodletting and on the effects of celestial bodies on human life. Three printed books contain a Latin treatise on arthritis and gout from 1653, the instructions of the archiepiscopal consistory for midwives from 1770 (both printed in Prague), and depictions of surgeries and surgical instruments, printed in Berlin in 1844.

18
Nov

Early Printed Books from the Museum of West Bohemia in Pilsen

Three early printed books from the collections of the Museum of West Bohemia in Pilsen were digitised in 2019. The earliest of them is a collection of works on law printed by Jean Barbier in Paris in 1506 (shelf mark 503 B 004); the others include an edition of the apologetic work Graecarum affectionum curatio by Theodoret of Cyrus, published by Hieronymus Commelinus in Heidelberg in 1592 (shelf mark 503 E 003), and an edition of the complete works of Seneca, prepared by Joost Lips (Justus Lipsius) and printed by Jan Moretus in Antwerp in 1605 (shelf mark 505 A 005).

18
Nov

A Manuscript Herbarium from the Czech Pharmaceutical Museum

The Czech Pharmaceutical Museum in Kuks (a centre of Charles University in Prague - the Faculty of Pharmacy in Hradec Králové) has provided access to a German herbarium of medical-pharmaceutical focus from the end of the 17th century or the beginning of the 18th century (shelf mark HK-SR-1). The work, referred to by its anonymous author as Lustgärtlein, has not been preserved in its entirety: it includes 108 coloured depictions of plants, a textual part, which provides descriptions of the plants and their medical use, and indices. Latin and German medical recipes were later added on the blank pages of the volume.

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