“Dessins Naïfs”: Artwork from Istanbul, Patriarchate Library, Panaghia 26

Today’s find is some very delightful artwork from the last folios of a tenth-century collection of New Testament texts. These “dessins naïfs”, as Kouroupou and Géhin (authors of the tremendously good and thorough recent catalogue of the Panaghia Kamariotissa collection) call them, feature several ships, a horse, birds and people along with geometric designs.

While the text can be securely dated to the 10th c. based on certain stylistic aspects of the script, it’s much more difficult to tell when these drawings were added in. My knowledge of ships isn’t what it should be but if anyone has a guess as to what kind of vessels these are and what their date might be, please leave a comment! 

fol. 302r

Fol. 302r

 Fol.302r (detail)

Fol. 302 closeup

Fol. 303r

Fol. 303r

Bonus image from Istanbul, Patriarchate Library, Panaghia 24. At the very end of a fifteenth-century ms containing orations by Demosthenes, I found this deer and gave him the (perhaps not entirely polite) nickname ‘Bene Pendentes’.

Bene Pendentes

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