Cicero, 14th Century
Manuscripts, frequently passed down for several generations, can preserve
archeological layers that reveal the experiences of their former owners.
This exemplar of the Rhetorica ad Herennium testifies to its
importance among medieval and Renaissance readers alike. The parchment
leaves have been torn and repaired: below the tear, on the older parchment,
a late Gothic hand of the 14th century is preserved; above the tear, on
the newer parchment, a humanistic hand of the 15th century appears. The
interlinear and marginal comments, or "glosses," in the older
portion of the book reveal how carefully the text was read by successive
owners, and the effort made by a later owner to restore the mutilated
text likewise indicates how keenly it continued to be valued.
Pseudo-Cicero. Rhetorica ad Herennium. Italy,
14th and 15th centuries.
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