France, Paris (?)
Mid-12th century
Wood covered with goffered leather
29 x 20 x 1 cm
Provenance unknown
MEV 5374

An exceptional Romanesque binding, which only conserves one wooden cover bound in goffered leather. The leather has been decorated by stamping it with hot irons of different shapes. The binding is centred upon the goffered pattern of an imposing church, with apse and bell tower, beneath a vault of intertwining motifs, and surrounding it there are motifs done with irons of different shapes, such as towers, warriors, bishops, mounted knights and motifs of Mudejar tradition. According to Anscari M. Mundó this bookbinding is the only one of four codices of the 'Gloss ordinaire' to have been conserved, written in the mid-12th century in France, which reached Vic at the end of the 13th century. They were part of an important group of codices owned by Prince Henry, son of King Louis VI of France, who became a Cistercian in 1146 and was appointed bishop of Beauvais in 1149. On his death they were dispersed all over Europe. They were probably written and bound in Paris, or in the vicinity, on the orders of Henry, then still prince, shortly before the mid-12th century.

18 Leather
19 Gold, Silver and Metalworking Arts
20 Forge Work
21 Ceramics
22 Study Galleries