Category Archives: Erik Kwakkel

A Hidden Medieval Archive Surfaces

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) On my Tumblr I recently posted two entries devoted to a remarkable discovery made in the Book History class I am co-teaching with Paul Hoftijzer for the Book and Digital Media Studies programme at Leiden University. It concerns 132 … Continue reading

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Making Books for Profit in Medieval Times

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) The novelist L.P. Hartley once said that the past is like a foreign country: things are done different there. What I find most remarkable about the bookish slice of medieval society that I study is not … Continue reading

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The Proud Reader: Showing Off the Medieval Book

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) When I started this post I set out to answer a very simple query: what is the oldest photograph we have of a real reader interacting with a medieval manuscript? The quest was sparked by a 19th-century photograph … Continue reading

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My First Year on Twitter: How I Became @erik_kwakkel

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) I signed up for Twitter almost a year ago to the day. I had heard of Twitter, of course, but I connected the medium to such messages as “I am so bored of this life!” and “I just … Continue reading

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The Traveling Book: Medieval Texts on the Move

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) In their owner’s backpack, on wagons and in boats: medieval books were keen travelers. With them they carried texts and ideas across the map of Europe, disseminating the sciences, spreading romances and passing on historical narratives. Short texts … Continue reading

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“Book to Reader, Come in Reader!” The Manuscript Speaks, But Are You Listening?

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) When I prepare myself to go to a library to study a medieval manuscript there are certain items I will pack. Pencil: check. Ruler: check. Magnifying glass: check. Mirror: check. iPad: check. All are in frequent … Continue reading

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Life Beyond the Grave: The Leiden Apocalypse Fragments

By Erik Kwakkel (@erik_kwakkel) A while ago, this blog devoted a post to medieval manuscript fragments, parts of sheets that were cut up and used to support bookbindings. New fragments appear on the radar frequently. Just yesterday, for example, new fragments of … Continue reading

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