Cambridge University Library's collection of illuminated manuscripts is of international significance. It originates in the medieval university and stands alongside the holdings of the colleges and the Fitzwilliam Museum. The University Library contains major European examples of medieval illumination from the ninth to the sixteenth centuries, with acknowledged masterpieces of Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance book art, as well as illuminated literary texts, including the first complete Chaucer manuscript. This catalogue provides scholars and researchers easy access to the University Library's illuminated manuscripts, evaluating the importance of many of them for the very first time. It contains descriptions of famous manuscripts, for example the Life of Edward the Confessor attributed to Matthew Paris, as well as hundreds of lesser-known items. Beautifully illustrated throughout, the catalogue contains descriptions of individual manuscripts with up-to-date assessments of their style, origins and importance, together with biographical references.

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