Bern, Burgerbibliothek, Cod. 88


Germanicus' Aratea with Scholia Bernensia (De signis caeli)

Aratea text: Germanicus, Aratea; De signis caeli (as scholia)

Parchment — i + 11 + i fols. — 380 × 290 mm — Luxeuil / Saint-Bertin(?) — s. Xex-XIin

Support: I8(-2) (ff. 1-6, missing two folios after 3), II1(-1) (f. 7 missing 1 folio after 7), III4 (ff. 8-11)Modern foliation with pencil in the upper outher corner of each recto and verso.

Layout: Ff.1v-7v and 10r-11r written in one column, ff. 8v-9v in two columns, 40 lines. The text of the poem takes central place on the folio. Illustrations are drawn in the inner broad margin, while the scholia are copied in the outher margin parallel to the verses to which they relate. Capitalis rustica in red used to mark out opening verses for sections. Verses begin with interchanging red and green initials. 28 illustrations of the constellations, two per folio. For iconographical analysis see Homburger, Otto: Die illustrierten Handschriften der Burgerbibliothek Bern. Bd. 2. (Bern, um 1960), Sternbilder des Mittelalters, pp. 216-17, as well as Kristen Lippincott's Saxl Project.

Binding: Modern carton binding.

History: The manuscript is a copy of Boulogne-sur-mer, BM, MS 188. Looking at the iconographic features proposed that the illustrations were drawn by Odbert from St. Bertin, where the exemplar MS Boulogne 188 came from. — Donantion inscription on top margin of f. 1v:"Werinharius eps dedit sanctę Marię" refering to a gift made by bishop Werner I (1001-1028) made to the cathedral of St. Mary in Strasbourg (on the library at Strasbourg destroyed in the war of 1870 see Hoffmann, H. Schreibschulen p. 273-4). The manuscript was for some time binded together with Bern, Burgerbibliothek MS 87 (described together by Wimpfelin in 1508: "Geometria ex Greco in latinum a Boecio translate, proprietates et dispositions signorum caeli"). This manuscript has a colophon written by Constantius, priest of St. Peter’s abbey church in Luxeuil in 1004. It is then possible that Werner procured copies of Boethius' texts from Constantius in Luxeuil and an Aratea from St. Bertin and at some time later the two were bound together based on their common use in the quadrivium.

Selected bibliography: Sternbilder des Mittelalters, pp. 214-18. — Boutemy, André. "Obdert de Saint-Bertin et la second Bible de Charles le Chauve," Scriptorium 4 (1950): 101-102. — Homburger, Otto. “Über die kunstgeschichtliche Bedeutung der Handschriften der Burgerbibliothek.” In Schätze der Burgerbibliothek Bern, pp. 107-130. Bern: Lang, 1953. — Bischoff, Kommentar, pp. 13-14. — Lott, Transmission. — Ullman, Geometry, pp. 263-285. — Reeve (1980), p. 518. — Mütherich (1989), pp. 31-58. — Obbema (1989), p. 13. — Munk Olsen, Catalogue 1, p. 406. — Blume (2000), p. 549. — Haffner, p. 24. — Le Boeuffle (1975), pp. xli-xlii. — Gain (1976), pp. 2-8. — Dell'Era (1979), pp. 269-70. — Dekker, pp. 145, 163, 173-75 and 233-35. — Saenger, Paul. Space Between Words: The Origins of Silent Reading. Stanford University Press, 1997. — Stutzmann, Dominique. “Saint-Bertin : centre culturel du VIIe au XVIIIe siècle.” 2016.. — Lippincott, Kristen. Saxl Project.

1r Modern title and a stamp of the library.

1v-11r Germanicus: Aratea Claudii caesaris arati phaenomena Ab ioue principium magno deduxit aratus … — … (text of the poem ends on f. 10r) Significet ventosue truces fidamque quietem. Lost vv. 157-240 on a now lost bifolio at the middle of the quire (between ff. 3 and 4), as well as vv. 387-445 on a now lost folio presumably facing f. 7 which is now singleton. f. 8r blank

Abreviated Literature:

Bischoff, KommentarBischoff, Bernhard, ed. Kommentar zum Aratus des Germanicus Ms. Voss. Lat. Q. 79, Bibliotheek der Rijksuniversiteit Leiden. Luzern: Faksimile-Verl., 1989.
Blume (2000)Blume, Dieter. Regenten des Himmels. Astrologische Bilder in Mittelalter und Renaissance. Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 2000.
DekkerDekker, Elly. Illustrating the Phaenomena: Celestial Cartography in Antiquity and the Middle Ages. Oxford: OUP, 2012.
Dell'Era (1979)Dell'Era, Antonio. "Una rielaborazione dell'Arato latino." In Studi Medievali ser. 3, 20:1 (1979): 269-302.
Gain (1976)Germanicus. The Aratus Ascribed to Germanicus Caesar. Ed. by David Bruce Gain. London: Athlone Press, 1976.
HaffnerHaffner, Mechthild. Ein antiker Sternbilderzyklus und seine Tradierung in Handschriften vom frühen Mittelalter bis zum Humanismus: Untersuchungen zu den Illustrationen der “Aratea” des Germanicus. Hildesheim: Olms, 1997.
Le Boeuffle (1975)Germanicus. Les phénomènes d’Aratos. Edited by André Le Boeuffle. Paris: Les Belles Lettres, 1975.
Lott, TransmissionLott, Elisabeth S. “The Textual Tradition of the Aratea of Germanicus Caesar: Missing Links in the « µ » Branch.” Revue d’histoire des textes 11 (1981): 147-158.
Munk Olsen, Catalogue 1Munk Olsen, Birger. L’ étude Des Auteurs Classiques Latins Aux XIe et XIIe Siècles. Vol. I. Catalogue des manuscrits classiques latins copiés du IXe. au XIIe siècle: Apicius - Juvénal. Paris: CNRS, 1982.
Mütherich (1989)Mütherich, Florentine. “Die Bilder.” In Aratea. Faksimile Der Handschrift Ms. Voss. Lat. Q.79 Der Rijksuniversiteit Leiden, 2:31–78. Luzern: Faksimile-Verl., 1989.
Obbema (1989)Obbema, Pieter F. J. “Die Handschrift.” In Aratea. Faksimile Der Handschrift Ms. Voss. Lat. Q.79 Der Rijksuniversiteit Leiden, 2:9–29. Luzern: Faksimile-Verl., 1989.
Reeve (1980)Reeve, Michael D. “Some Astronomical Manuscripts.” Classical Quarterly 30:2 (1980): 508-522.
Sternbilder des MittelaltersBlume, Dieter, Mechthild Haffner, and Wolfgang Metzger. Sternbilder des Mittelalters: der gemalte Himmel zwischen Wissenschaft und Phantasie. Vol. I, 1: Text und Katalog der Handschriften. Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 2012.
Ullman, GeometryUllman, Berthold Louis. "Geometry in the Mediaeval Quadrivium." In Studi di bibliografia e di storia in onore di Tammaro De Marinis. Vol. 4. Verona: Mardersteig, 1964.

(last change: 2018-05-31)
How to quote: Ivana Dobcheva, 'Bern, Burgerbibliothek, Cod. 88 - Aratea Digital' ( last update: 2018-05-31).