Divine Comedy
Ms. 1102

Angelica Library

Dated: 1325-1350
Author: Dante Alighieri

Folio measurements: 235×160 mm.

Genre: Poem
Miniatures: Present in the Inferno

Manuscript 1102 of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy was produced in the Emilia area, between 1351 and 1400, thus shortly after the poet’s death. The parchment folios measure 345 x 240 mm. The manuscript tradition of the Divine Comedy is very rich, whilst the codex held at the Angelica Library is one of the oldest and most precious examples of Dante’s epic poem.

The rich iconographic programme originally provided for 100 miniatures, one for each canto of the poem, to introduce its opening. However, only the 34 miniatures of the Inferno were realised, and only the blank spaces intended to house the others remain. 

There are quite a few abrasions and censored portions in the illuminated images, especially on the nudity of the devils, perhaps added by a particularly devout owner. Stains generated by past biodeteriogenic agents can be seen on many folios. 

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