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The Circle of the Sun: a new exhibit in Green Library



Image from the Dragmaticon manuscript, Italy, ca. 1475. MSS Codex M0412

The secular side of Stanford’s medieval and early modern manuscript collections will be on display in The Circle of the Sun, opening in Green Library’s Peterson Gallery and Munger Rotunda on Feb. 3. The exhibit follows on last year’s Scripting the Sacred and is the concluding half of a two-part exhibit designed to show the full spectrum of manuscripts  available for teaching and research.

Co-curated by associate curator for paleographical materials David Jordan and senior Sarah Weston, The Circle of the Sun examines the seven liberal arts in cathedral schools and universities; the rise of professions in law, medicine, and commerce; and the emergence of Scholastic philosophy, history, vernacular literature, and Renaissance humanism. Highlights of manuscripts on display, dating from the ninth through seventeenth centuries, include complete codices of ancient works by Ovid, Virgil, and Cicero; illustrated astronomical and legal texts; a portrait of Geoffrey Chaucer; medieval poetry; and fragments of rarely seen treatises on Latin lexicography, etymology, and allegory. Also included are Roman writing implements, coins, and inscriptions as well as goatskins prepared as parchment by a modern artisan.

Curated tours lasting approximately 45 minutes are available to groups (suggested maximum 12) by appointment with David Jordan at 650-723-3866 or

By Becky Fischbach

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December 9, 2015

December 9, 2015