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Thursday, May 29 • 4:00pm - 4:30pm
(Book and Paper Session) Treasure from the Bog: The Faddan More Psalter

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This lecture tells the story of the recovery and conservation of Faddan More Psalter, an early medieval manuscript unearthed from a peat bog in Co Tipperary in the summer of 2006. We will look at the methodology behind the recording and dismantling of the fragmented text block and the dewatering of the saturated folia and cover. Many new and exciting discoveries were made during the lengthy and difficult task of conserving this important archeological find, which had survived in an extreme environment for over a millennium and how that same environment was somewhat responsible for its survival. In conservation terms much of the technique was developed through trials as work progressed due to the unique nature of the project, with little in the way of comparative work existing.

We will examine the content of manuscript, which contains the remains of the 150 Psalms from the Old Testament, including areas of illumination and decorated lettering. We will see the cover in remarkable original condition; possibly the only one of its kind in Western Europe with comparative structures that hails from lands as far away as Egypt. We will also look in detail at some of the surprise features from the cover that have raised more questions than answers but without doubt will play an important role in adding to the history of book making and monastic life in early medieval Ireland.

avatar for John Gillis

John Gillis

Senior Manuscript Conservator, Trinity College
John Gillis is a Senior Book and Manuscript Conservator. He has worked in the Library Conservation Department of Trinity College Dublin for many years. While on secondment from Trinity, he established and worked as Head of Conservation in the Delmas Conservation Bindery, at Archbishop... Read More →

Thursday May 29, 2014 4:00pm - 4:30pm PDT
Grand Ballroom A