Libraries, and the books they store, are prized for the information that they contain. This blank book was constructed in the 16th Century to be turned into an illuminated manuscript, an example of which can be seen in this case. For unknown reasons, this book was never used and remained blank over the next five centuries. So why would the library keep a book if it doesn’t contain a single written word or image? Even blank, this book reveals the intricacies involved in making a medieval manuscript. The binding is animal skin and the stitching used to strengthen the spine and hold the pages is easily visible. The pages are made of paper and ruled with lines in preparation of writing that would never come. When focusing on the unique content in medieval manuscripts, it is often easy to overlook the vast amounts of labor and resources that go into the creation of the book as an object. Each component has a history of its own.
Blank Book. (16th century).