Skip to main content

IMC 2015: Sessions

Session 1218: Communities of Reform, IV: Illuminating Reform in the Czech Lands

Wednesday 8 July 2015, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:COST Action IS 1301 'New Communities of Interpretation'
Organiser:Sabrina Corbellini, Oudere Nederlandse Letterkunde Rijksuniversiteit Groningen Oude Kijk in 't Jatstraat 26 9712 EK GRONINGEN
Moderator/Chair:Margriet Hoogvliet, Vakgroep Mediaevistiek, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
Paper 1218-aCatholic Tradition and 'Hussite Spirit' of Reform as Reflected by the Illuminator of the Krumlov Speculum
(Language: English)
Irina von Morzé, Institut für Mittelalterforschung, Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Wien
Index terms: Lay Piety, Manuscripts and Palaeography
Paper 1218-bCommunicating Religious Belief and Social Group: New Concepts of Illuminating Liturgy for Utraquist Communities in Bohemia
(Language: English)
Maria Theisen, Institut für Mittelalterforschung, Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Wien
Index terms: Manuscripts and Palaeography, Mentalities
Paper 1218-cIllustrating a Czech Bible in Reforming Bohemia: The Boskovice-Bible and Its Pictorial Program in the Light of Cotemporary Treatises and Sermons
(Language: English)
Lara Fortunato, Dipartimento di Studi dell’Europa Orientale, Università degli Studi di Napoli 'L'Orientale'
Index terms: Art History - General, Biblical Studies, Manuscripts and Palaeography

The session proposes an investigation of how book illumination commented on issues of reform from the Hussite wars up to the times of Utraquist brotherhoods in the Czech lands (15th and 16th century). Illuminated books were costly objects and therefore, had been reserved over centuries for the ecclesiastical and secular elites, demonstrating their view on social order and underlining their status within the community as common sense - by the will of God. However, at the end of the 14th century, new ways of conceptualizing social and ecclesiastical order emerged. Due to a general stream of economic and social shifts and the rising wealth of towns and literate citizens, who gradually increased their activities also in religious life, as well as due to Prague university, which brought forth new classes of readership and commissioners, we can observe a certain 'democratization' of the medium book during the first half of the 15th century, which became additionally fuelled by the Bohemian reform and its writings in the vernacular. Ideas and methods of presenting religious and social concepts now diverged in many ways and forced illuminators to find new artistic strategies. Taking a closer look at these visual concepts accompanying the texts will therefore give some interior views on the process of building new communities of reform during the 15th and 16th century.