Comites latentes: Hidden Manuscripts Revealed

Fol. 243v ('CCXLIII', fragment 19)

Partner Project

Full Title: Comites latentes: Hidden Manuscripts Revealed

Partner Institution: Vlaamse Erfgoedbibliotheken / Flanders Heritage Libraries, Antwerp

Financed By: Flemish Government, Department for Culture, Youth and MediaDuration: 2021-2023

Project Leader: Dr. Godfried Croenen

Between 2019 and 2020 Flanders Heritage Libraries surveyed all the medieval and sixteenth-century manuscripts kept in public libraries and heritage institutions in Flanders and Brussels (outside the KBR national library and the National Archives). This project ‘Medieval Manuscripts in Flemish Collections’ (MMFC) resulted in the MMFC database, which is a first online catalogue of the more than 4000 manuscripts and fragments dating from the period 601-1600 kept in Flanders in about 100 different collections and institutions. The catalogue contains basic metadata for all these items and detailed descriptions for those manuscripts that were directly catalogued by the project team in the course of 2020.

Work on the MMFC project made it clear that there were many more manuscripts and manuscript fragments in Flemish collections than previously thought. In particular, there appeared to be substantial collections of manuscript fragments that were not or insufficiently catalogued. Such collections can be found at nearly all the institutions represented in the MMFC database. In order to remedy this situation so that the information becomes available to researchers, heritage professionals and the wider public, Flanders Heritage Libraries was awarded a grant in 2021 for a new project ‘Comites latentes’ to focus in particular on the manuscript fragments, as well as on collections held by ecclesiastical institutions and organisations.

In the course of the ‘Comites latentes’ project, about 1500 fragments will be catalogued and described in detail in the MMFC database. The fragments will also be digitised and the medieval items will be published on Fragmentarium. The fragments held in Flemish collections include some of the most important witnesses of Middle Dutch literature, as well as manuscripts in Latin and in other medieval vernaculars, such as Old and Middle French, Old High German, Old Frisian and Occitan.

Contact: Dr Godfried Croenen, ​godfried@vlaamse-erfgoedbibliotheken.be, Vlaamse Erfgoedbibliotheken, Statiestraat 179, 2600 Antwerpen, Belgium

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