Digitised manuscripts at Heidelberg

Yesterday I found that there are a number of manuscripts online at Heidelberg, here.  Looking around, there are a number there, which are of wide interest.  Better yet, you can download them in PDF form!

The Palatini manuscripts are inevitably interesting.  Among the Greek mss are the following items of special interest:

  •  Palatinus graecus 18 (13th century) — Hesiod’s Works and Days, with Tzetzes’ scholia, Euripides’ Hecuba with scholia, a portion of Luke’s gospel, Lycophron’s Cassandra, and others.
  • Palatinus graecus 23 (9-10th c.) — The Palatine anthology of Greek verse.
  • Palatinus graecus 45 (14th c.) — The Odyssey plus summaries and scholia.
  • Palatinus graecus 47 (1505) — Athenaeus, Deipnosophists (the banquet of the foodies!)
  • Palatinus graecus 88 (13th c.) — 32 orations of Lysias, plus other orations.
  • Palatinus graecus 129 (before 1360) — 141 folios of … what?  Any guesses?
  • Palatinus graecus 153 (10th c.) — Plutarch, 6 of the Moralia.
  • Palatinus graecus 155 (15th c.) — Aelian, Variae Historiae!  Then a bunch of letters by Philostratus and Alciphron, among others.
  • Palatinus graecus 252 (10th c.) — Thucydides.
  • Palatinus graecus 281 (1040) — Miscellaneous stuff, none of which I recognise, arithmetical, musical, theological, etc.  I do love these miscellaneous manuscripts, tho!
  • Palatinus graecus 356 (13th c.) — Bits and pieces; extracts from declamations by Libanius, Aristides, Severus of Alexandria, Phalaris, Apollonius of Tyana, Synesius, Julian the Apostate, Isocrates, Gregory Nazianzen, Epiphanius On gems, and much more.
  • Palatinus graecus 398 (9th c.) — Periplus of the Erythraean sea, Arrian’s Cynegeticos, Phlegon, and other geographical and paradoxographical material.

Now that is quite a lot of value from a few manuscripts!

The Latin manuscripts also contain some gems:

Not so spectacular as the Greek, but solid, useful stuff.  I was particularly delighted to see the Periochae of Livy. 

And the ability to download the things makes these mss. invaluable to researchers.


6 thoughts on “Digitised manuscripts at Heidelberg

  1. You will find a list of digitalised Greek manuscripts all over the world on Pinakes’ links page : http://pinakes.irht.cnrs.fr/pages/show?id_cmspage=8 For Heidelberg, you can at least add Palat. gr. 43 and 299. There is also on the same webpage indications about on-line catalogues of Greek manuscripts, and bibliographies.
    If you have any suggestion of content, please, send us your links ! (we only indicate digitalisation of entire manuscripts, not sample folios).

  2. Thank you — I had seen that page but I had not realised how useful it was!

    I need to go through it and see what sort of things the mss contain.

  3. Dear Roger, if I may,

    It is interesting that the only manuscript whose content you were not sure about, namely Pal. gr. 129, is precisely the only one of the list above which I’ve encountered in my own research. Not that I know a lot about it, but here is what I can say.

    General: The Pinakes entry gives a precise account of the manuscript’s contents and a very good bibliographical data (http://pinakes.irht.cnrs.fr/rech_manusc/resultManuscrit?filterville=HEIDELBERG&filter_ville=151&filter_depot=256&filter_cote=Palat.+gr.+129&commit=Rechercher). The only thing one should be mindful about is the dating of the manuscript. Pinakes indicates fifteenth century, whereas as you have pointed out already, the more accurate dating seems to be before 1360 (i.e before the death of Nikephoros Gregoras, one of the scribes; see below).

    Details: The reason I am interested in Pal. gr. 129 is the fact that one of the scribes participating in the composition of the codex and probably even supervising it was Nikephoros Gregoras (d. ca. 1359/1360), whose letter-collection my reseach is based on. Around the second quarter of the fourteenth century, Gregoras had in his possession another miscellanious manuscript, Escurialensis X.I.13, which he probably borrowed so he could use it as model for Pal. gr. 129. The latter is interesting for me in two respects: 1) in the prepation of the manuscript, Gregoras collaborated with at least one other scribe, an unidentified hand, which also appears in codd. Vat. gr. 116 and 228, two of the most important fourteenth-century manuscripts containing Gregoras’ letter-collection together his editorial notes and interventions. That is, Pal. gr. 129, together with several other codices, is one of the material witnesses of the circle of scholars/scribes Gregoras was part or even presiding of; 2) In Pal. gr. 129 Gregoras used two different styles of handwriting. I am not sure how common this is, but I found it intriguing that one could variate one’s handwriting for different purposes; with respect of different content and contexts.

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