An illuminated manuscript
is a manuscript
, especially of a religious nature, in which the script
is supplemented by the addition of colourful ornamentation, such as illuminated initials
, borders and the like.
It is said that the illumination of manuscripts came about through the boredom felt by the monks in the scriptorium due to the repetitive nature of their copying. To entertain themselves, they first added mice or birds.
Their motifs are taken from heraldry or religious symbolism.
Some of the techniques used are:
- gold leaf
- powdered gold
- Celtic knotwork
Famous illuminated manuscripts