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From Parchment to Cyberspace

Medieval Literature in the Digital Age


Stephen G. Nichols

From Parchment to Cyberspace argues the case for studying high-resolution digital images of original manuscripts to analyze medieval literature. By presenting a rigorous philosophical argument for the authenticity of such images (a point disputed by digital skeptics) the book illustrates how digitization offers scholars innovative methods for comparing manuscripts of vernacular literature – such as The Romance of the Rose or texts by Christine de Pizan – that reveal aspects of medieval culture crucial to understanding the period.

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List of Illustrations


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Figure 0.1. Critical edition of Roman de la Rose, showing multiplicity of manuscripts it purports to represent.

Figure 0.2. Manuscript Folio (leaf/page) as complex hand-written and -painted artifact. Christine de Pizan composing poetry. London: British Library, MS Harley 4431, fol. 4r. Paris 1406–10.

Figure 0.3. Fleshing and removing hair from a cowhide in preparation for making manuscript parchment.

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