France and England: medieval manuscripts between 700 and 1200

Thanks to the patronage of The Polonsky Foundation, the Bibliothèque nationale de France and the British Library have established an unprecedented partnership in the field of medieval manuscripts. The Polonsky Foundation England and France Project: Manuscripts from the British Library and the Bibliothèque nationale de France, 700-1200 concerns 800 manuscripts, half of them held by the BnF, and the other half by the British Library. They were selected because of their importance for the history of French and English relations in the Middle Ages, as well as for their artistic, historical or literary value. Written between the 8th and the 12th centuries, they represent the variety and spread of the intellectual production of the early Middle Ages and the Romanesque era.

The international conference marks the launch of the two websites created by the joint project. France-Angleterre : manuscrits médié- vaux entre 700 et 1200, created by the BnF, presents together all the 800 manuscripts ina format compatible with the International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF). A website developed by the British Library, Medieval England and France, 700-1200, will present a choice of manuscripts in detail and explore their significance through articles written by specialists. The conference shines a new light upon the rich heritage made available online thanks to The Polonsky Foundation, and upon the historical, literary and artistic relationships between medieval England and France.

The 21st November showcase the new resources created by the joint project, and will consist of a dialogue between the project collaborators. They will present the achievements and the lessons of this partnership that for the first time brings together the medieval collections of both institutions. A special focus will be placed on the opportunities created by the development of digital humanities and by image interoperability, which are transforming research practices. The 22nd and 23rd November will be devoted to the manuscripts, their illumination, their texts and their dissemination. Specialists from various fields will gather together for interdisciplinary presentations and discussion.

Organisers: Charlotte Denoël et Francesco Siri.

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