Romantic Love

One might argue that western ideas of romantic love have their roots in certain ideas of the Renaissance, when the Roman poet Ovid was re-interpreted through a Christian lens and seen as a harbinger of courtly and noble love. In fact, Ovid was probably just a Boris Johnson of ancient Rome, a public school cad with a gift for words, and not a person particularly worth following.

The Vatican Library has just digitized an Epistulae of Ovid drawn ca. 1430-1440, possibly in northern Italy, which depicts in its margins ten pairs of lovers framing the start of each letter (see article by Rabel).

Leaf through Ross.893 to see them. Here for example is Leander of Abydos clutching the M of "Mittit Abydenus ..." like a shield as he writes in Heroides Letter 18 of his desire to swim long distance to see his girlfriend:
You can also admire him wearing a most extraordinary Italian Renaissance high hat as letter 19 arrives by return of post from lovely Hero:
Here is the full list of 32 digitizations uploaded on July 5, 2016:
  1. Borg.copt.109.cass.IX.fasc.29 - Details
  2. Borg.copt.109.cass.XIX.fasc.71 - Details
  3. Borg.copt.109.cass.XIX.fasc.74 - Details
  4. Borg.copt.109.cass.XVII.fasc.62 - Details
  5. Borg.copt.109.cass.XVII.fasc.63 - biblical fragments including a page of Luke's Gospel - Details
  6. Borg.copt.109.cass.XVIII.fasc.65.1 - Details
  7. Borg.copt.109.cass.XVIII.fasc.66 - Details
  8. Borg.copt.109.cass.XVIII.fasc.67 - Details
  9. Borg.copt.109.cass.XVIII.fasc.68 - Details
  10. Chig.H.VII.229 - Horace - Details
  11. Ott.lat.3382 -historical? Armenia and Persia - Details
  12. Ross.893 - Ovid, Epistulae (above) - Details
  13. Urb.lat.679 - Rambaldi's commentary on Dante's Divine Comedy Details
  14. Vat.lat.101 - glossed bible, later books Details
  15. Vat.lat.293 - Ambrose, Details
  16. Vat.lat.309 - John of Damascus, attrib. Details
  17. Vat.lat.310 - John of Damascus, Chrysostom, Anselm - Details
  18. Vat.lat.331 - Jerome on prophets, Details
  19. Vat.lat.351 - Collection of Epistulae, Details
  20. Vat.lat.652 - Johannes Scotus Eriugena and his famed exposition on the heavenly hierarchy, from which derives our modern use of "hierarchy" as a key abstraction - Details
  21. Vat.lat.669 - Bernard of Clairvaux, Details
  22. Vat.lat.687 - Augustine plus bits and bobs including this nifty circular calendar for 1401 onwards,
  23. Vat.lat.690 - Peter Lombard, Sententiae Details
  24. Vat.lat.699 - Psalms commentary attributed to Innocent III - Details
  25. Vat.lat.708 - Albertus Magnus, bishop Regensburg, Summae theologiae, Details
  26. Vat.lat.753 - Details
  27. Vat.lat.794 - 14th century copy of Thomas Aquinas commentary on gospels. It seems from notes in it that Bermond de Montferrier, a Montpellier law professor was involved in transferring the codex to a convent in that city. With fine initial (below) showing the angelic doctor - Details
  28. Vat.lat.812 - Franciscan sermons Details
  29. Vat.lat.828 - works of Aegidius Romanus Details
  30. Vat.lat.856 - Henry of Ghent, 15th century, first exemplar? Details
  31. Vat.lat.12504 - letters of Enea Silvio Piccolomini, humanist, diplomat and pope, Details
  32. Vat.lat.14741 - Giorgio Grippari's 1694 handwritten list of the printed books in the Biblioteca Vaticana. This is only initial letters A-B. Details
This is Piggin's Unofficial List 58. If you have corrections or additions, please use the comments box below. Follow me on Twitter (@JBPiggin) for news of more additions to Digita Vaticana.

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