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Manuscript book in the west 2


Admission requirements

This course is aimed at students who have taken The Manuscript Book in the West 1. Students without prior knowledge of manuscripts are welcome but will be asked to read in advance Clemens, R. and Graham, T. (2007), Introduction to Manuscript Studies (Cornell University Press) to get up to speed.


This specialization course is devoted to a specific dynamic of medieval written culture: libraries and booklists. Students will explore the kind of libraries that existed in medieval times (e.g. institutional, private, and public), their contents and users, regulations about handling and storing books, and what we can learn from surviving booklists about lost libraries. The course consists of two parts: the first half discusses issues related to libraries and their context based on a selection of articles and book chapters; the second half is devoted to the wall catalogue of Lopsen, a monastery just outside the city walls of Leiden. Students will undertake a hands-on study of this special artifact, which is kept in the Leiden municipal archive.

Course objectives

1 To introduce students to libraries and their users in the age before print.

2 To develop a critical understanding of how knowledge of libraries and booklists may be employed in other medieval disciplines, such as the study of history and literature.


The timetable is available on the Media Studies website

Mode of instruction

Choose from:

  • Seminar

Course Load

The course load is 140 hours

  • Hours spent on attending seminars: 26 hours

  • Time for studying compulsory literature: 39 hours

  • Time for writing papers: 75 hours

Assessment method

  • Essay 1: 40%

  • Essay 2: 40%

  • Class participation: 20%


Blackboard will be used (general information, supplying additional readings)

Reading list

As a reference tool students need to own a copy of Clemens, R. and Graham, T. (2007), Introduction to Manuscript Studies (Cornell University Press).


Enrollment through uSis is mandatory. If you have any questions, please contact the departmental office, tel. 071 5272144 or mail:

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte via:
Registration Contractonderwijs via:


Media Studies student administration, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 102C. Tel. 071 5272144;

Coordinator of studies: Mr. J. Donkers, MA, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 1.02b.