The Winchester Bible: Now Visiting NYC

For the first time in its long history, one volume of the Winchester Bible is in the US, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, instead of at Winchester Cathedral.

The Bible will be rejoined temporarily by a frontispiece stolen two hundred years ago that made it into the hands of the Morgan after about 100 years. (Kind of embarrassing that Morgan didn’t just send it back to the Cathedral.)

Winchester Cathedral is also taking this opportunity to tell people to be on the lookout for 8 illuminated initials that were all cut out of the Winchester Bible sometime in the last century or so.

The eight missing initials are E, H, P, S and O (two initials, one cut in a circular form); an illumination of Jonah, probably emerging from the whale; and one unknown initial.

2 Comments

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2 responses to “The Winchester Bible: Now Visiting NYC

  1. …they left a 700 year old Bible totally unsupervised with several people who cut out chunks?!?

    • UK cathedral libraries are traditionally kinda… laissez-faire. Tons of ’em didn’t even catalog their stuff until recent times.

      And of course the thing they’re not saying is that librarians and archivists, or other people with legitimate reasons to be there, are usually the suspects for this kind of thing. Poorly paid librarians, poorly paid clerics, poorly paid cleaning people… the list goes on and on. Plus there’s also the “I’m well-connected and I feel entitled to cut stuff out, instead of buying my own.”

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