Book of Mulling (8th)

The Book of Mulling is an early Irish manuscript dating back from the second part of the 8th century.

It’s a small pocket gospel book (16 cm x 12 cm) mainly containing the four gospels and, as interlaces go, most notably featuring the portraits of the evangelists at the beginning of each Gospel on dedicated carpet pages.

Spirals and knotworks accompany the paintings of Matthew, Mark and John (Luke’s is missing). Each Gospel’s opening words feature decorated initials with zoomorphic interlace and knotworks, facing each evangelist portrait.

According to research from the Trinity College of Dublin where the manuscript is preserved, The Book of Mulling was likely written in Saint Mulling monastery, located on the banks of the river Barrow, in current County Carlow, south of Dublin, Ireland. This site is estimated to have been used as a place of pilgrimage since pre-christian times and the pagan festival of Lughnasa.

The Book of Mulling is preserved at the Trinity College of Dublin and you can read more about it here through several blog posts specifically about the Mulling Gospels. If you want to study the manuscript in its entirety, visit the digitized version here.

Read more on Wikipedia.

(Thanks to Dr Robert Bohan for the discovery)

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