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Sancti Bonifacii epistolae
Vienna, Austrian National Library, Cod. Vindob. 751, Mainz, 1st half of the 9th century


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Manuscript 751 of the National Austrian Library at Vienna is a composite volume consisting of four unrelated parts. Scholars will rejoice at now having at their disposal the facsimile edition of the first part (ff. 1-77) dating from the mid-ninth century and containing a large section of the correspondence of St Boniface and St Lullus (35 letters of Boniface and 12 addressed to him; 16 letters of Lullus and 24 addressed to him) together with other letters by several of their contemporaries.

Many of these copies can be shown to have been made directly from the originals which were preserved in the episcopal archives at Mainz. The facsimile edition is of a high quality and almost gives the illusion of having the actual manuscript in hand.

In his short introduction Dr Franz Unterkircher, the editor, deals successively with the later history of the manuscript (pp. 9-12), description and physical composition (pp. 13-15), script (pp. 17-21), contents (pp. 23-26), cryptography (pp. 27-29). He ends (pp. 31-35) with a concordance which lists all the letters in the order in which they appear in the manuscript with cross references to the editions of Serarius and of the M.G.H. (the italics used in the section show that the manuscript is our unique source for over 60 of the texts it contains). ...

The present edition is sure to be of great use both to the historian and paleographer and it provides an ideal tool for introducing students to the delights and problems of medieval text studies.

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