I had the afternoon off work on Monday after visiting an author in London and before going to watch Penn and Teller Fool Us being filmed (it was amazing) so I popped to the V and A for a browse.
I especially liked the Medieval Europe section which had a massive light filled room filled with Italian and French religious sculptures, huge doors etc. but in a darker room I found these sexy little beasts. Sorry the quality isn’t great, I took them on my phone and obviously didn’t want to use my flash.
I wrote a post the other day about my first favourite book, and I was saying that part of what I liked was that the pictures allowed me to tell myself the stories even before I was able to read. It seems that medieval artists had a similar idea because these ivory carvings show stories from the Bible to help illiterate worshippers access the stories.
But being a bit of a magpie, what really caught my eye was….
The manuscript dates from 1025-1050 AD and was said to be a gift to Sion Cathedral from the Emperor Charlemagne, so they decided to honour it by blinging it up in this gold, enamel and jewel binding around 1180-1200. Amazing.
How much will one of those set me back?