Institute of English Studies in the University of London
Illuminated manuscripts are not just beautiful books, they provide a particularly rich source of exploration of the nature of individual projects and of the inter-relationship between word and image in both generation and reception. This course will introduce students to the components and vocabulary of illumination and to its techniques and will incorporate brief surveys of its development. However, the focus will be upon the functions that it performed within the manuscript book from late Antiquity until the Renaissance, going beyond decoration and illustration. Its use in navigation and articulation of the text and in penetration of its deeper meaning through multivalent reading will be explored via case studies, as will its potential for better understanding hypertextuality and intertextuality.