Devil's Bible returns to Prague

From September 20 to January 6, the Prague National Library Clementinum, exhibited the most extensive of the world famous medieval manuscripts - Codex Gigas, considered the eighth wonder of the world and another called "Devil's Bible", reports AP.

In 1648, at the end of the Thirty Years War, a manuscript dating from the beginning of the XIII century, was taken away from the Prague Castle, where it is then stored, Swedish troops as a war trophy and since then is in the collections of the Swedish Royal Library in Stockholm.

In the manufacture of Codex Gigas has gone 160 donkey skins, and gutter size 92 by 50 centimeters with a thickness of 22 centimeters manuscript weighs 75 kilograms. The original manuscript was 640 pages, 624 of which are still in good condition.

Legend has it that created the Codex Gigas monk of the Benedictine monastery in the Czech city Podlazhitse, but not one, but with the help of the devil himself. Committed a serious crime monk to atone for his sin, sworn in just one night to write and decorate a book with drawings that will include all of human knowledge, and glorify the monastery forever. However, around midnight he realized that he can not cope with taking the vow alone and sold his soul to the devil in exchange for aid. The devil has fulfilled his promise, and the monk in gratitude painted a portrait of his assistant on the flyleaf of the book. Primarily because of this image, and not because of its size Codex Gigas was considered in the Christian world, "the eighth wonder of the world." Podlazhitsky monastery was later completely destroyed during the religious wars of the XV century.

As written in the Latin manuscript contains the sum of the knowledge of the monks of the Benedictine Order at the beginning of the XIII century - the Old and New Testament texts "The etymology of" Isidore of Seville, "Jewish War" Josephus list Kosmovoy chronicles, treatises on various topics, the list of novices Podlazhitskogo monastery, so called "Mirror sinner" (a collection of edifying and entertaining stories, examples for preachers), various forms of collusion, calendar Synodikon (indicating the days of the saints), and other records.

Returning to Prague after 359 years of absence Codex Gigas, delivered to the Czech capital of Stockholm on a military plane, it caused great public interest. The value of the book is so great that by the beginning of exposure Clementinum equipped with a new alarm. In the hall, which is supported by a special microclimate, allowed only 60 people per hour. They have the opportunity for ten minutes to consider placement in case the manuscript, opened on the 290th page. It just is the famous image of the devil.

For three and a half-century Codex Gigas is only the third time leaves Stockholm - he had previously exhibited in New York and Berlin.


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