News from the Vatican Film Library No. 8 January 2013 Medical Manuscripts from the long Twelfth Century A project has been underway for the last several years to compile a comprehensive list of all Latin medical manuscripts written in the “long twelfth century” (ca. 1075 to ca. 1225). This project is meant as a complement to Augusto Beccaria, I Codici di medicina del periodo presalernitano (secoli IX, X e XI) (Rome, 1956), which surveyed 145 extant medical MSS from the ninth to eleventh centuries. Just as Beccaria wished to give a glimpse of the pre-Salernitan period, so this project offers a snapshot of the subsequent period dominated (at least in traditional historiography) by the “school” of Salerno in southern Italy. Work on the project was already announced in a brief notice in Manuscripts on My Mind in December 2010 (4–5). We write now to explain in some more detail the project’s aims, to offer aid to researchers and cataloguers working on texts related to this corpus, and to solicit information on possible new entries. One result of the corpus of MSS thus far collected—now is demonstrating opportunities for much additionnumbering close to 500—is that it is a large enough body al work. For example, the still standard edition of the of material to confirm what the truly significant texts in Latin poem De viribus herbarum commonly ascribed to this period were. Unsurprising but now well-document- “Macer floridus” was made in 1832 from twelve MSS, ed is the prominence of the work of the Arabic-into-Latin only one of which was twelfth century. To date, our list translator, Constantine the African (d. before 1098/99). now has identified twenty-seven twelfth-century copAlready, paleographers affiliated with the project (Fran- ies of that text! Another virtue of the project, precisely cis Newton and Erik Kwakkel) have identified a copy of because we have attempted to survey all possible evihis great medical encyclopedia, the Pantegni, which was dence from throughout Europe, is in showing absences, made at Monte Cassino probably under Constantine’s texts that virtually disappeared during this period. Into direct supervision. The corpus also shows the rapid dis- this category fall most of the translations made in Tolesemination of Constantiniana decades before the classic do by Gerard of Cremona (d. 1187), which should, theSalernitan texts (like the pharmaceutical work Circa in- oretically, have come into view by the third quarter of stans or the ensemble on women’s medicine, the Trot- the twelfth century. After largely disappearing after Geula) begin to appear in extant MSS. But the corpus also rard’s death, these appear only in the second quarter of brings into light other texts coming out of southern It- the thirteenth century, shifting medicine toward a schoaly in this period, like the hitherto ignored Passionari- lastic phase more focused on the works of Galen and us of Gariopontus, that were just as if not more popular his great Arabic commentators, especially Avicenna (Ibn than Constantine’s works. These were not translations Sina). In other words, there is material here not only for from Arabic, but translations from Greek or newly edit- many dozens of new critical editions, but also for studies ed compilations based on older Latin sources. of textual reception, the twelfth-century renaissance, The starting date of ca. 1075, therefore, is meant the transition from caroline to gothic script, and the “innot simply to pick up where Beccaria left off in the late ternationalization” of European intellectual culture. eleventh century (indeed, we have several more items Project directors are Monica Green, Professor of Histhat can properly be added to his list), but also to en- tory at ASU, and Florence Eliza Glaze, Associate Professure thorough assessment of the veritable explosion of sor of History at Carolina Coastal University. Recognizing medical activity in the later decades of the eleventh cen- that available bibliographies on many medical texts are tury. The survey has already confirmed that a full sev- inadequate, we would be happy to share preliminary en-part Articella (a collection of introductory teaching results from the project with scholars, cataloguers, or texts) was assembled by ca. 1100; it has documented manuscript owners who wish to have fuller informathe transmission of southern Italian texts to England by tion on the significance of medical texts in their possesthe second quarter of the twelfth century if not earli- sion. It is hoped that some version of this database will er; and, by surveying evidence from twelfth-century be made publicly available in the near future, includcatalogs and booklists as well, it has confirmed the full ing links to those manuscripts that are already in digioutlines of the corpus of medical writings circulating in tal form online. An initial survey sounding can be found twelfth-century Europe. The end date of ca. 1225 is like- in Monica H. Green, “Rethinking the Manuscript Basis wise significant: around that time, southern Italy was of Salvatore De Renzi’s Collectio Salernitana: The Corceding its role as the European center of medical stud- pus of Medical Writings in the ‘Long’ Twelfth Centuies to Paris and Montpellier. A number of texts from the ry,” Edizione Nazionale ‘La Scuola medica Salernitana’, late eleventh-century florescence ceased to be copied 3 (Florence, 2008), 15–60. News about the discovery after this period. But in many cases, they were supersed- of the significance of the Hague Pantegni MS can be ed by Salernitan works written in the second half of the found at: century that would go on to dominate European rel2010/prrevmedicine.htm. Please direct any inquimedicine for several centuries thereafter. ries to Monica Green at or Data from the handlist has already been drawn upon Florence Eliza Glaze at Notices of for several on-going editing projects by people working privately owned manuscripts that might fall within the on Constantinian and Salernitan texts. And the handlist chronological parameters of this project would be especially appreciated. -11-