Affiche de l'exposition. Photo/Foto: Fondation Martin Bodmer/Naomi Wenger

Calligrapher and illuminator craftsmen of the Middle Ages copied, illustrated and safeguarded crucial texts from antiquity to their times. Covering topics ranging from science to canonical law, music or world history, they allow us access to knowledge that would have otherwise escaped us.

The efforts of these men reach far beyond content: the precise, meticulous illustrations, drawn with quill or brush, applying colours based on natural pigments or gold leaf, are treasures beautiful beyond description.

Today, celebrating the 15th birthday of the e-codices project, the Martin Bodmer Foundation and the Abbey Library of St. Gall pay homage to these artists, custodians of this indispensable and rich heritage.

Digital operators preserve and continue their work by selecting the most impressive illuminated manuscripts from its vaults and fifteen Swiss libraries.

The exposition ‘illuminated manuscripts kept in Switzerland’ (Trésors enluminés de Suisse) gives an overview of the extensive collection in Switzerland.