Medieval Manuscripts on the Web

The list below is intended to offer quick access to various digitization projects on the web. Listings are alphabetical by country, then city, and then by originating institution if necessary. Some cooperative projects are to be found at the relevant top level; so, a consortium of American libraries will appear as the first entry under the United States, for example.

When I began this list many years ago, there were very few manuscript sites on the web. There are now so many that the list has become unwieldy, but I still use it, and hope it might be useful to others as well. I have included notes about contents, formats, and intended audiences.

I am always happy to hear about projects I do not know about, and about broken links. You can e-mail me at sian@mail.ubc.ca.

Umbrella Projects

The World Digital Library includes many digitizations of manuscripts, medieval and otherwise. There are many ways to access the materials, including the Timeline feature Illuminated Manuscripts from Europe

The Medieval Academy of America maintains a curated list of Medieval Digital Resources, including some related to manuscript digitizations

Digitized Medieval Manuscripts is a project to present digitizations of medieval manuscripts on interactive maps. The last blog update was 2018, and the last Facebook post was in mid-May of 2019, but it remains very useful

Earlier Latin Manuscripts is a specialist tool based on E. A. Lowe’s Codices Latini Antiquiores, with updates and corrections to Lowe. The Catalogue and Collections functions allow one to search for a particular script, or the products of a particular area, and link to maps and sample images of scripts

Manuscripts Online: Written Culture 1000 to 1500 is an older project that allows users to search a range of online primary sources related to Britain. Useful for finding resources, but note that many of these are subscription-based databases, rather than direct links to images

A digital project that is of potential interest to professional users of this page is the Seymour de Ricci Bibliotheca Britannica Manuscripta Digitized Archive, a searchable database of the notes made by De Ricci towards his planned census of medieval manuscripts in British libraries

Monastic Manuscript Project is a very complete, specialized list of manuscripts relevant to the study of early monasticism, maintained by Albrecht Diem

Medieval Libraries of Great Britain is a digital resource based on Neil Ker’s Medieval Libraries of Great Britain and the Corpus of British Medieval Library Catalogues. While it is incomplete, it is a useful specialist tool for tracing and reconstructing the contents of medieval British libraries

Licensing Status of Digitized Manuscripts Repositories is a work in progress by Carin Ruff to clarify the terms under which the images of digital manuscripts may be used

Palaeography

Users of this page might also be interested in these online resources for palaeography:

DigiPal: Digital Resource and Database of Palaeography, Manuscripts and Diplomatic: a portal and blog site for a project based in the Department of Digital Humanities, King’s College London, on digital technology and palaeography. A developing project aimed at experts. Note that this resource is currently offline until January 4, 2021, as the result of maintenance

English Handwriting, 1500-1700: An online course (from Cambridge). This is an older resource, but still offers much useful practice in transcription

vHMML School is an excellent online resource of the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library, with beautifully-illustrated introductions to Latin, Syriac, and Arabic scripts

InScribe: Palaeography Training Materials: a free online course from the Institute of Historical Research, University of London

Paleography tutorial, 1500-1800 (National Archives, UK)

Scottish Handwriting (16th-18th centuries) (National Records of Scotland)

Australia

National Library of Australia Digital Collections: most items in this ongoing effort are related to Australian history, but the Medieval Manuscripts section includes items from the Clifford Collection and the Nan Kivelly Calligraphy Collection

Austria

ALO: Austrian Literature Online: Die digitale Bibliothek: complete digitizations of Austrian documents from the 11th century to the present. The easiest way to find the medieval and Renaissance manuscripts is via the Year Index. In German and English

Vienna

The Digital Reading Room of the Österreichische Nationalbibliothek is a portal to various digitised holdings, including manuscripts. The search and catalogue pages are in German only. Browsing is difficult: a search for “handschrift” will produce a list of thousands of hits, but invoking the Filter and limiting the date range makes the system more manageable

Belgium

Brussels

Belgica: the digital library of the Bibliothèque royale de Belgique/ Koninklijke Bibliotheek van België. Includes complete digitizations of almost 1000 medieval manuscripts: easiest access is through the Collections tab. Site is in French, Flemish, or English. The reader can be finicky

Ghent

The Image Library of the Universiteits Bibliotheek Gent includes digitizations of hundreds of manuscripts and fragments. Use the media type filter, and then filter by date, language and so on. Digitizations are IIIF compliant, and are fully downloadable in formats including TIFF, JPEG, and PDF

Liège

DONum is the digital repository of the Université de Liège Library. There are currently over 500 manuscripts (see the list of media types to the right side of the landing page). These have been digitized as PDFs, which can be downloaded

Canada

Calgary

The Cotton Nero A.x. Project at the University of Calgary includes images of every folio of London, British Library, Cotton MS Nero A x (the Gawain-manuscript). Note that this is not a flippable facsimile – each image must be accessed individually (click the Browse button)

Toronto

The Digital Collections page of the University of Toronto Fisher Library includes links to complete manuscripts and to manuscript fragments. Digitizations are IIIF standard, with easily-locatable manifests

Vancouver

The University of British Columbia Library’s Western Manuscripts and Early Printed Books is the access point to digitizations of both fragments and a few complete manuscripts (including a 13th-century theological miscellany; a 13th-century Bible; a 15th-century Book of Hours; and a Spanish chant manuscript). Organization is confusing (drill down to the filters to limit by date), and access to the images themselves is frustratingly slow, but complete manuscripts can be downloaded as PDFs (drill down into the Download menu, where you will also find manifests)

Victoria

Digital Collections: Medieval and Early Modern Manuscripts of the University of Victoria offers access to a range of documents, manuscripts, charters, fragments, and so on: searching is not optimal, but there is an inventory as another point of access. The reader is old and limited

Czech Republic

Manuscriptorium is an aggregator site for digital projects coordinated by the National Library of the Czech Republic. Organization/ searching is a bit mysterious, but there is a list of Medieval Manuscripts of the National Library of the Czech Republic that offers access to digital facsimiles

Olomouc

There is a list of digitized manuscripts from the Research Library in Olomouc, in Czech. This appears to be an old page, and generally points to small, selected images

Denmark

Copenhagen

The Copenhagen Maimonides: complete digitization of 14th-century copy of Moshe ben Maimon’s Guide for the Perplexed. Navigation is a bit awkward: begin by expanding the folio list on the left. In Danish or English

Emanuscripts is an older portal to digitizations of manuscripts from the Kongelige Bibliotek/ Royal Library of Copenhagen. Many complete manuscripts. In Danish or English. Content is gradually being moved to Digital Collections, where new digitizations will also be located

Treasures in the Royal Library: archived version of an older treasures exhibition from Kongelige Bibliotek, Copenhagen. Includes many images from medieval manuscripts. In Danish or English

Finland

Codices Fennici is a collection of medieval and 16th-century manuscripts from Finland, in libraries from Finland and elswhere

Fragmenta Membranea is a collection of manuscript leaves from the diocese of Turku, from a wide variety of service books. Individual images can be downloaded as TIFFs, or entire fragments, as PDFs

France

Bibliothèque virtuelle des manuscrits médiévaux: database of images from medieval manuscripts in libraries across France: if a town or city is not listed below, there is nevertheless a very good chance that it is to be found in the BVMM. Some manuscripts are represented by only a few images, emphasizing decoration; others are fully digitized, some in colour and some in black and white. The shell is an older site, so the full digitizations are not easy to navigate, though some are now available in a Mirador viewer. Advanced search not particularly helpful. In French

Europeana Regia: an EU-funded project from 2012 to reconstruct three important royal collections: Carolingian manuscripts, the Louvre collection at the time of Charles V and Charles VI, and the library of the Aragonese Kings of Naples. There is a complete list of repositories under the Manuscripts tab. Note that you currently have to complete a Captcha challenge to access the site

Enluminures: older database of images from medieval manuscripts in French municipal libraries. Casual users can access images via thematic strands; expert search is also available. Images are generally small, and of a few folia per manuscript only. In French. Note that many French municipal libraries also have complete digital facsimiles on their websites

Epinal

BMI Epinal includes full digitizations of several important manuscripts, including an Anglo-Saxon glossary. The landing page currently simply highlights some of the manuscripts: you need to go to the Galeries page to find digitizations, and use the filters to find medieval manuscripts. Images can be downloaded

Lyon

Numelyo is the digital library of the Bibliothèque municipale de Lyon: it includes full digitizations of 55 Merovingian and Carolingian manuscripts. The reader is very old

Paris

Gallica: la bibliothèque numérique is a portal to French digital collections through the Bibliothèque Nationale de France. It includes access to many medieval manuscripts (search can be limited to manuscripts from the home page). Some facsimiles are black and white, while others are in colour. In French, English, Spanish, or Portuguese. Frequently updated. Available download formats include JPEG for individual images, and PDF for entire manuscripts

Mandragore: older searchable iconographic database of catalogue records and images for illuminated manuscripts in the BnF collection. Aimed at scholars; uses Iconclass system to categorize images. In French

The landing page for Expositions at the BnF points to many exhibitions that include medieval material. See also the direct links below for some past exhibitions

  • al-Idrîsî : la Méditerranée au XIIe siècle: exhibition organized around the Geography of al-Idrîsî. Includes images from other medieval manuscripts. In French
  • L’Art du livre arabe: exhibition about Arabic book arts, with many medieval images. In French or English
  • L’Atlas Catalan: focussed on a 14th-century atlas. In French
  • Bestiaire médiévale: exhibition about medieval bestiaries. In French, English, or Spanish
  • Enluminures en Islam: exhibition about Islamic illumination, including medieval Islamic manuscripts. Some content appears to be missing/ faulty (January 2021). In French
  • Gastronomie médiévale: exhibition about medieval cooking and dining, with many manuscripts images; includes recipes. In French or English
  • Jean Fouquet, peintre et enlumineur du XVe siècle: exhibition of the work of medieval illuminator Jean Fouquet; includes various ways to page through samples from his work (navigation somewhat confusing). In French or English
  • Jeux: exhibition about games, including section on medieval games, with images of manuscripts, cards, game boards and pieces. In French
  • La légende du roi Arthur: exhibition about King Arthur; includes many images from medieval manuscripts. In French
  • Les mappemondes: Une image médiévale du monde: exhibition built around the Ebstorf mappa mundi, with images from other medieval manuscripts in the thematic material (navigation somewhat confusing). In French
  • Miniatures Flamandes: online exhibition of Flemish illumination, in cooperation with the Koninklijke Bibliotheek van België. Includes interactive books. In French or Flemish
  • Splendeurs persanes: online exhibition drawing on manuscripts from 12th – 17th centuries. In French or English
  • Trésors Carolingiens: online exhibition of Carolingian manuscripts; includes some pageable books (such as the Sacramentary of Drogo) and some zoomable images. French or English
Saint-Omer

The Bibliothèque numérique has pageable colour digital fascimiles of complete manuscripts in a nimble viewer, with some downloading permitted. French

Troyes

Médiathèque Grand Troyes once (2014 0r so) included thousands of complete digital facsimiles, scanned from black and white microfilm. Searching was not easy. Now the Bibliothèque Virtuelle de Clairvaux includes many manuscripts, though navigation remains difficult; Feuilletoires promises to link to complete colour facsimiles, but the links currently (January 2021) return an error message. French

Valenciennes

The patrimoine section of the Bibliothèque Valenciennes site includes pageable colour facsimiles of 9 medieval manuscripts. Full and partial downloads as JPEGs or PDFs. French

Germany

Manuscripta Mediaevalia: a portal site bringing together German-led manuscript digitization projects: links to full digitizations of manuscripts from a growing list of sites, including Bonn, St Gall, Munich, Greifswald, Heidelberg, as well as from outside Germany. Apparently in German or English, but the English tab has been unresponsive for some years

Augsburg

Digitale Sammlungen at the Universität Augsburg includes full digitizations. German and English. Download whole manuscripts as PDFs, or individual folia as JPEGs

Cologne

Codices Electronici Ecclesiae Coloniensis: complete digitizations of some 400 manuscripts from the Episcopal and Cathedral Library of Cologne. Some of the framing text in the site is translated into English (access from the “Optionen” button), but most of the navigation and all of the cataloguing material is in German. It can be perplexing to figure out how to find a manuscript, but once found, the facsimiles are easy to use

Heidelberg

Digitale Bibliothek at Universität Heidelberg is a portal to digitizations of complete manuscripts from the Bibliotheca Palatina (such as the famous Codex Manesse), the Codices Salemitani (monastic libraries of Salem and Petershausen), Heidelberg (western and oriental manuscripts), and the Bibliotheca Laureshamensis (monastic library of Lorsch; see entry below). Site framework in German or English, but some manuscript-level material is in German only. It can be difficult to find specific items, but once found, the facsimiles are easy to use. Manuscripts can be downloaded in PDF form

Kassel

ORKA is the Universität Kassel Bibliothek portal to digital materials, including medieval manuscripts. It is not particularly easy to zero in on the medieval material via the available browsing and searching tools: date-limited searches and year-limited browsing are most successful. Once found, facsimiles are complete and zoomable. German, English, French, and Spanish

Lorsch

Bibliotheca Laureshamensis is a project to reconstruct digitally the monastic library of Lorsch. Lorsch manuscripts from all over the world are made available here in complete, pageable facsimiles with download options. It can be difficult to get at the facsimiles; begin with the Virtual Library menu item, and then persist. In German, English, Italian, or French

Munich

MDZ Digitale Bibliothek at Bayerischen Staatsbibliothek is the portal to projects of the Munich Digital Centre; includes complete digitizations of medieval manuscripts as well as early printed books. Site framing material available in German or English, but catalogue-level material is in German only

Tübingen

e-sequence Digital Edition of the Saint Gall Corpus of Sequences by Notker Balbulus: includes a digital facsimile with sound files reconstructing the music. German and English

Wolfenbüttel

Wolfenbüttel Digital Library: full digitizations of over 1500 manuscripts from the Herzog August Bibliothek. In German or English. Uses DFG Viewer

Würzburg

Libri sancti Kyliani: full digitizations of manuscripts from the Dombibliothek. There is a visualization option for searching, but the list tab is more approachable. German or English

Iceland

Handrit.is is a database at the National and University Library of Iceland of almost 1000 historical manuscripts. A quick group” link opens a list of 290 pre-1500 manuscripts; not all are digitized, however, and the search function is a bit fussy. In Icelandic, English, or Danish

Ireland

Dublin

Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies

Irish Script on Screen: database of digitized Irish manuscripts from many institutions, with catalogue descriptions. The Google search used on the site is not particularly helpful, but there is a useful index page that groups manuscripts by institution. Low-resolution images accessible to all; (free) registration allows scholarly users access to higher-resolution images. In Irish or English

Royal Irish Academy

Saint Patrick’s Confessio is a site that includes pageable colour facsimiles of 8 medieval manuscripts of the text

Trinity College Dublin

Digital Collections is a portal to the Library’s growing number of digitizations. It is not easy to see what the collection includes, given a very basic search function, but there is, for example, a complete digitization of the Book of Kells, though irritatingly, one must access the digitization by individual pages

Israel

Digitized Hebrew Manuscripts Catalogue: the National Library of Israel online catalogue includes links to thousands of digitized Hebrew manuscripts from around the world. The announcement page I have linked here describes the scope of the project, and various ways of accessing the manuscripts

Italy

Manus online is a database of catalogue descriptions and digital images of manuscripts (and other archival materials) in Italian libraries. The advanced search option is the best way to find material, though this still requires a fair bit of drilling down. Most useful if you already know what you are looking for. In Italian and English

Florence

Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana

The Digital Repository includes complete reproductions of thousands of manuscripts, including the Codex Amiatinus. Searching is not particularly efficient, but there are many filter options. There are links to images of older catalogues. The digitizations are highly zoomable, but the reader is a bit cumbersome to use

Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze

Many complete digitizations of manuscripts. The site is entirely in Italian. The search function is minimal, but as of now (January 2021) the Inventario opens a list by shelfmark: the site is most useful, then, if you already know what you are looking for

Naples

The Biblioteca Digitale of the Biblioteca Nazionale Di Napoli includes complete digitizations of medieval manuscripts. Searching and navigation can be difficult (the site is in Italian only), but there is a complete list of all digital material, and manuscript highlights at I Manoscritti della BNN

Turin

Vercelli Book Digitale is a project to digitize the whole of the Vercelli Book, one of the major Old English poetic codices. A second beta version is now (January 2021) online, with the whole of the manuscript. The facsimile includes transcriptions; work on the textual side of things is ongoing. Italian and English

Vatican City

Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana

Manoscritti digitalizzati offers direct links by shelfmark to over 20,000 colour manuscript facsimiles. Some navigation text available in German or English. See also the Polonsky Foundation Digitization Project , a collaboration between the BAV and the Bodleian Library to digitize ancient texts (focussing on Hebrew Manuscripts, Greek manuscripts, and incunabula)

Bibliotheca Palatina

Bibliotheca Palatina digital is a project to reconstruct virtually the Heidelberg Bibliotheca Palatina, much of which went to the Vatican as the spoils of war in 1623. Complete facsimiles. In German and English

Netherlands

Literatuurgeschiedenis.nl: this portal for Dutch literature includes an extensive medieval section, with many images of medieval manuscripts. A site aimed at Dutch students, written entirely in Dutch

Amsterdam

Beeldbank is the image bank of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam library. It includes complete digitizations of 18 medieval manuscripts. In Dutch

The Hague

The Koninklijke Bibliotheek has a list of Digitized Books and a Highlights of the KB Collection landing page. Searching is not currently easy. Medieval material accessible via the landing page includes:

Utrecht

The homepage of Special Collections at the Universiteitsbibliotheek Utrecht points to digitizations of manuscripts and printed books in the collection, the most famous of them through a link to the Treasury. It is not easy to get a sense of just how many items there are in any one convenient place. There is an alphabetical list of Digitized Objects, but it is overwhelming. Many famous manuscripts are available, such as the Utrecht Psalter, which is presented with annotations

New Zealand

Auckland

The Sir George Grey Collection at Auckland City Libraries includes some medieval manuscripts, such as the Rossdhu Book of Hours (Med.Ms G146). The digitizations and the reader are old

Norway

Bergen

Virtual Manuscripts is a project of the University of Bergen and Bergen Research Foundation to reassemble, in the virtual realm, fragments from about a thousand medieval manuscripts from Norway. The reassembled fragments (access from the Virtual Manuscripts tab at the top of the landing page) can be leafed through by means of an flip reader; the page-turn animations make navigation a little slow

Poland

Warsaw

Polona is the digital portal of the National Library of Poland. The landing page offers a basic search in English or Polish: the best way to find medieval material is to open the Advanced Search option and limit by date range. Catalogue information is in Polish

Wroclaw

The Digital Library of the University of Wroclaw has many medieval manuscripts available in digital form. For a complete list, go to the Publications List: Manuscripts. In Polish, Czech, English, German, and French

Portugal

Lisbon

Biblioteca nacional digital is the portal to digitizations of books and manuscripts from the collection of the National Library of Portugal. To find medieval manuscripts, begin with the Index page that lists digitized items by date. Portuguese

Russia

Moscow

Some full digitizations of items in the Russian State Library are available through Manuscripta Mediaevalia (much of this site is in German); click Bibliotheksorte, then scroll down to Moskau

Spain

Barcelona

Universitat de Barcelona

The Biblioteca Patrimonial Digital includes medieval manuscripts: use the date filter to find them. Manuscripts can be downloaded in PDF ranges. Spanish

Biblioteca de l’Orfeó Català

Treasures of the Library of Orfeó Català: a few musical manuscripts. In English, Spanish, and Catalan

Madrid

Biblioteca Nacional de España

Biblioteca Digital Hispánica includes thousands of completely digitized manuscripts. The Discover page points to material by themes. The advanced search function can be used to limit by date. In Spanish and English

Real Biblioteca

The Manuscritos tab of the digital library points to a list of digitized materials. It is difficult to find out what exactly is included, and currently (January 2021) the digitizations rely on Flash, which is now blocked by many modern browsers since Adobe discontinued support for the plug-in.

Valencia

This collection of the Universitat de València, Biblioteca Històrica is included in the Europeana Regia project; there are 92 fully-digitized manuscripts

There is a list of manuscripts by author in RODERIC with over 200 items

Sweden

Lund

The Digital Collections landing page at Lund University Library points to several projects including medieval manuscripts (there is also a search function), including the St Laurentius Digital Manuscript Library. Cataloguing is very thorough. Individual images can be downloaded as TIFFs; the reader is rudimentary. Swedish and English

Stockholm

Codex Gigas (the Devil’s Bible): the landing page at the Kungliga Biblioteket – Sveriges Nationalbibliothek includes an overview and sample images, and also points to a complete digitization through the World Digital Library. Images can be made very large, and individual pages saved in PNG format. Many languages, including English

Uppsala

The Uppsala University Library landing page for the Codex Argenteus project points to various resources, including a browsable digitization

Switzerland

e-codices: Virtual Manuscript Library of Switzerland is the portal site for a very large collection of complete digitizations of medieval manuscripts in Swiss libraries. In German, English, French, or Italian. A notable collection accessible through this site is

United Kingdom

DIAMM: Digital Image Archive of Medieval Music is a massive database of European sources of medieval polyphonic music. Thousands of records, most with high-resolution images. Aimed at the expert. Free registration required. At the moment (January 2021) the site is unresponsive, but it is listed as an ongoing project on many sites, so I have continued to include it for the moment

The Online Froissart: A Digital Edition of the Chronicles of Jean Froissart: a scholarly editing project offering access to the manuscript tradition of the first three books of Froissart’s Chroniques, with digital images of many manuscripts

The Schøyen Collection: a privately-maintained collection of manuscripts and fragments. Many images, with extensive annotation

Aberdeen

The University of Aberdeen’s Special Collections landing page links to several digitization projects, including

  • The Aberdeen Bestiary: complete digitization, with transcription, commentary, and translation of the Latin text
  • The Burnet Psalter: complete digitization. Images can be accessed through the Index to the Manuscript
  • The St. Albans Psalter: complete digitization. Includes commentary, transcription, and translation. Images can be accessed from the Commentary or Transcription pages
Aberystwyth

The National Library of Wales has digitized many medieval manuscripts. Start with the Manuscripts section of the Digital Gallery, then head to Medieval Manuscripts. Manuscripts are listed by descriptive names rather than shelf marks, so it can be difficult to find a particular item. Welsh and English. Highlights include

Cambridge

Cambridge University Library

The Cambridge Digital Library is the portal to a growing collection of digitized manuscripts, with superb new catalogue descriptions. Digitizations are IIIF compliant, with easily-located manifests – altogether an outstanding example of modern digitization. Some of the contents include

Corpus Christi College

Parker Library on the Web: complete digitization of most manuscripts (well over 500) in the Parker Library, along with professional-level cataloguing (some of it the original M.R. James cataloguing, some of it supplemented). Includes useful bibliographies. IIIF compliant; uses Mirador

Fitzwilliam Museum

The Online Resources page links to various overviews and exhibitions, including some involving medieval manuscripts. There is also a beta version (January 2021) of the Collection Explorer. Typical results will be of an image or images, rather than complete digitizations. Images can be downloaded

Trinity College

The James Catalogue of Western Manuscripts: some years ago, Trinity digitized the M.R. James catalogue of the college manuscripts. A program is currently underway to digitize the manuscripts themselves, and the James catalogue is being used as the portal. There are currently (January 2021) about 800 complete digitizations: access these from the Browse page (the advanced search function has been offline for several years now, though simple search is available). Digitizations are IIIF compliant, with easily located manifests. Famous manuscripts include

Edinburgh

National Libary of Scotland

The Auchinleck MS (NLS Advocates 19.2.1): complete transcription and digital facsimile of the manuscript. The transcription is the focus of the project: image viewing is awkward (click to individual folia from the transcription), and images are very small, though zoomable within a small window. This is an older project

The Murthly Hours: complete digitization of a 13th-century Book of Hours. Images are very small, though zoomable within a small window. This is an older project

University of Edinburgh

Image Collections: thousands of images, displayed using LUNA software. There is also a Centre for Research Collections Flickr stream. It can be difficult to get a sense of the scope of the medieval offerings: Western Medieval Manuscripts is the main category relevant to readers of this page. As with most LUNA interfaces, searching is difficult, and navigation is clumsy. Most items are displayed as a (partial) gallery of images, but there are also a few pageable facsimiles, including MS 56, an 11th-century Celtic Psalter

Glasgow

The University of Glasgow Special Collections Digitised Collections points to various pages and projects – some archives of quite old exhibitions – that include medieval material. There is, for example, a selection of images from the Hunterian Psalter

Hereford

Mappa Mundi is a digitization of the Hereford mappa mundi, offering three clickable versions of the map: the original, a colour-enhanced version, and a 3D scan. Extensive annotation

Lichfield

Manuscripts of Lichfield Cathedral: the St Chad (Llandeilo Fawr) Gospels and the Wycliffite New Testament. Cooperative project between the Chapter of Lichfield Cathedral and William F. Endres of the University of Kentucky. Galleries for each manuscript include images of every page, and offer the user the ability to overlay an image with a range of spectral bands

London

British Library

The Medieval Manuscripts Blog features many stories, and images, about manuscripts in the collection of the British Library

The Collection Care Blog often includes stories about medieval manuscripts

The Digital Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts is a searchable database, with many images, of western illuminated manuscripts in the British Library. This is an older resource. It does not include manuscripts from the Cotton collection, and has only the cuttings from the Additional collection. These are not complete facsimiles: for those, see

Digitised Manuscripts, the portal to a massive and growing collection of fully digitised, pageable and zoomable manuscripts with professional-level cataloguing. Famous manuscripts include

Images Online is the Library’s commercial image bank. Users can search for and purchase images here. Includes many medieval manuscripts

Online Gallery is a portal to online content, including individual images of manuscripts, pageable digital facsimiles, exhibitions

Codex Sinaiticus Project : an international collaboration to bring together digital images from various institutions that hold parts of this 4th-century Greek Bible manuscript. The site includes high-resolution images, transcriptions, and a variety of viewing options. In English, German, Greek, or Russian

The Polonsky Project: Medieval England and France, 700 – 1200: this is a curated version of this project with explanatory material; for full digitizations of all 800 manuscripts in a IIIF-compliant environment, visit the companion site at the Bibliothèque national de France (French or English)

Magna Carta: from the Treasures in Full collection. Visitors can zoom the document, view video clips, and read an English translation

The Malory Project includes complete digital facsimiles of the BL’s Winchester Manuscript, and the John Rylands Library copy of William Caxton’s first edition of Malory’s Morte Darthur

Treasures in Full is the portal to full digitizations. Emphasis is on early printed books (Shakespeare in Quarto, the Caxton editions of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, two copies of the Gutenberg Bible, and 253 Renaissance festival books). Navigation is straightforward, and the interface allows comparison; default view is small, but images can be enlarged

Virtual Books at the British Library: the hub page for “Turning the Pages” versions of famous items (including manuscripts and early printed books) in the British Library. The pageable facsimiles with audio commentary offer selections only, and are aimed at the general reader. These were among the first of the BL’s digitizations, and while there has been some updating, some are showing their age

The Victoria and Albert Museum

The Search the Collections function can, with some patience, be persuaded to turn up several hundred images from medieval manuscripts; most of these are leafs and cuttings. The collection also includes facsimiles of medieval manuscripts by such artists as Henry Shaw and Caleb Wing, as well as examples of the work of the Spanish Forger

The Wellcome Library

Wellcome Arabic Manuscripts is a database of about 1000 Arabic manuscripts related to the history of medicine

Manchester

John Rylands Library Special Collections Blog includes news related to manuscripts and other rare books; stories frequently include images

Manchester Digital Collections is the new landing page for digital images and projects. Older content is being aggregated here but there are also previous sites/ interfaces that are currently (January 2021) still active

Rylands Genizah is a collection of images of items (10th – 19th C) from the Genizah of the Ben Ezra Synagogue in Old Cairo

Rylands Medieval Collection  contains images from the medieval manuscripts in the Rylands collection, emphasizing Middle English

Nottingham

The department of Manuscripts and Special Collections at the University of Nottingham Library has a variety of online Exhibitions, many of which include medieval items. There is also a pageable partial facsimile of the Wollaton Antiphonal

Oxford

Medieval Manuscripts in Oxford Libraries is a catalogue of Western manuscripts at the Bodleian and some Oxford colleges. The entries include professional-level cataloguing, and links to digital facsimiles where available; collection lists can also be filtered to show only entries where facsimiles exist

Balliol College

Balliol College Medieval Manuscripts is a gallery of images, usually covering whole manuscripts, of books in Balliol’s collection: there are currently over 100 manuscripts, and a note indicating that digitization is proceeding according to user demand (with a contact link). Images are displayed in Flickr albums. The catalogue of Balliol manuscripts by R.A.B. Mynors has also been photographed and mounted in full

Bodleian Library

Digital Bodleian is the portal for digital projects from the Bodleian. Older images and projects have moved here, and there are also many full digitizations, with the landing page highlighting new additions. There are various routes into the digitizations, by named collection, by theme (Western Medieval Manuscripts, Arabic Manuscripts and Maps, and Armenian Manuscripts, for example), and by browse or search. Individual pages can be downloaded as JPEGs, and whole manuscripts as PDFs

The Polonsky Foundation Digitization Project  was a collaboration (completed in 2017) between the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana and the Bodleian Library to digitize ancient texts (focussing on Hebrew Manuscripts, Greek manuscripts, and incunabula)

Past Exhibitions Online includes many archived Bodleian exhiibitions featuring medieval materials

Christ Church

Christ Church began digitizing its manuscripts and rare books in 2014; these digitizations are now part of Digital Bodleian and can be accessed there, or via the college’s Western Manuscripts landing page

Rochester

Textus Roffensis at the Rochester Cathedral site introduces the Book of Rochester, and includes a complete digitization

York

Late Medieval English Scribes is an online catalogue of all scribal hands appearing in the manuscripts of the works of Chaucer, Gower, Trevisa, Langland, and Hoccleve. Most entries include sample pages. This is an older site; uses Zoomify

United States of America

Digital Scriptorium is a growing, searchable database of selected images from medieval and Renaissance manuscripts from almost 50 American institutions. Aimed at expert users, but includes a Highlights page for casual readers. Images can be downloaded

Ann Arbor

Brut Chronicle is a complete digitization of a text of the Middle English Brut at the University of Michigan Library

Baltimore

Johns Hopkins University

The Digital Library of Medieval Manuscripts brings together manuscripts from around the world. Collections include the Roman de la Rose Digital Library, and the Christine de Pizan Digital Scriptorium. The manuscripts can also be accessed through a master list. Digitizations are smooth and full-featured, but there is almost no cataloguing data

Walters Art Museum

Walters Art Museum Online Collection: images from medieval and Renaissance manuscripts in the Walters collection can be accessed through several thematic threads, or through simple or advanced search. The Walters also has a Flickr photostream: Walters Art Museum Illuminated Manuscripts’ Photostream. You can browse and download complete sets of high-resolution images of the manuscripts that have been digitized through The Digital Walters

Bethesda, MD

Islamic Medical Manuscripts at the National Library of Medicine has many selected images. Older exhibition, with some updating. Framing material aimed at both the general visitor, and at a scholarly audience

Medieval Manuscripts in the National Library of Medicine is a very old exhibition, with selected images

Boston

Boston College

The Burns Library has digitized several Books of Hours and liturgical leaves: access them here. There is also a project centered around the Burns Antiphoner, pairing a complete digitization with explanatory text

Boston Public Library

Digital Commonwealth: Massachusetts Collections Online includes Medieval and Early Renaissance Manuscripts from several institutions, including the BPL

Brandeis University

Book of Hours: very old project; complete digitization. Images are small

Cambridge, MA

Harvard’s Houghton Library has made its medieval manuscripts accessible through the Digital Scriptorium, and also through their own Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts landing page

Chapel Hill, NC

The Mackinney Collection of Medieval Medical Illustrations, hosted by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library, is a browsable/ searchable collection of over 1000 images, digitized from slides created and collected by Loren C. McKinney, a medieval historian. This is an older site

Chicago

Art Institute of Chicago

There are medieval manuscript items (leaves and cuttings) accessible through searching The Collection, though they are not easy to pry out. They are classified as Prints and Drawings, and the date filters can be helpful

Newberry Library

The Newberry Digital Collections include medieval and early modern manuscripts: use the date filters to find them

University of Chicago

The Goodspeed Manuscript Collection has digitized 68 Biblical manuscripts, dating from the 5th to the 19th centuries

Rose and Chess (Roman de la Rose and Le jeu des échecs moralisés) offers complete digitizations of MS 1380 and MS 392. The framing of the site is older, but the images are in a modern reader

Collegeville, MN

The Reading Room of the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library at Saint John’s University and the College of St Benedict includes many resources for working with manuscripts. The Collections tab provides access to a list of the microfilmed and digitized items. Registration is required to view images, and some are available only for on-site consultation

Columbia, SC

Pages from the Past: A Legacy of Medieval Books in South Carolina Collections is a digital record of all medieval manuscripts in South Carolina collections, housed at the University of South Carolina. Many images, of both full manuscripts and leaves and cuttings

Dallas

The Exhibitions of the Bridwell Library at Southern Methodist University include many images from manuscripts and early print; emphasis on religious material

Lexington, KY

Electronic Beowulf 4.0, hosted at the University of Kentucky, is the latest version of the pioneering digitization project, including access to images of the manuscript, as well as of many related materials

Los Angeles

The Getty Museum’s Explore Art: Manuscripts links to images, blogs and exhibitions of items in the Getty’s collection related to manuscripts

New Haven

The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library: Digital Library at Yale University includes many images from papyrus, medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, and early printed books

New York

Columbia University

Content from Columbia is part of the Digital Scriptorium, but can also be accessed from Digital Library Collections, though it is not easy to find. Another route is through the Exhibitions page

The Jewish Theological Seminary

The Jewish Theological Seminary’s Online Exhibits include significant medieval materials

Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Collections database can be searched in various ways, and contains many images from medieval manuscripts. In addition, there are various exhibitions archived on the site, including:

The Morgan Library and Museum

Corsair, the museum’s online catalogue, includes a filtered list of images from medieval and Renaissance manuscripts in the Morgan collection

The Exhibitions page links to current and past exhibitions. Many have medieval content, including

New York Public Library

There is medieval manuscript material in the Digital Collections of the NYPL, but it is hard to find. I have had the most luck with using the Browse function by items, and then choosing filters to limit by type or date

Oberlin, OH

The Artz Hours is a complete, now very old, digitization of a Book of Hours belonging to Oberlin College

Palo Alto, CA

Special Collections at Stanford University has mounted several Exhibits with medieval material, including The Burke Collection of Early Italian Miniatures

Philadelphia

Free Library of Philadelphia

These materials are available in Digital Scriptorium, and also through the Digital Collections page. There is an Advanced Search that allows browsing by call numbers, if you already know what you are looking for

Philadelphia Museum of Art

The Collections can be searched by classification, including manuscripts

University of Pennsylvania

Penn in Hand: Selected Manuscripts is the portal to catalogue information and digital facsimiles of manuscripts in the University of Pennsylvania collection. Hundreds of complete digitizations, pageable and zoomable to actual size

Roll 1066: Genealogical Chronicle of the Kings of England to Edward IV: wonderful presentation of the whole roll, with full transcription appearing on click. Extensive index

Princeton

The Charrette Project is a very old site containing texts and manuscript images witnessing Chrétien de Troyes’s Chevalier de la charrette

Princeton Digital Library of Islamic Manuscripts contains complete digitizations of some 1600 Islamic manuscripts, some of which are medieval; most digitizations are from black and white microfilm

Yemeni Manuscript Digitization Initiative: complete digitizations of Arabic manuscripts from the 10th century to the present

St Benedict, OR

Mount Angel Abbey’s Illuminated Manuscripts points to complete facsimiles, in PDF, of some of the Abbey’s manuscripts, mostly Books of Hours

San Marino, CA

The Huntington Digital Library is a selection of fully digitized items from the Library’s collection (medieval and otherwise). Highlights include the Ellesmere Chaucer. The Browse tab allows filtered searching

Washington, DC

The Digital Collections of the Library of Congress include medieval material, though you need to poke around a bit to find it. A separate page for the Lessing J. Rosenwald Collection includes significant medieval and early modern material. Many complete, pageable digitizations, with high-resolution images available. The list of archived Exhibitions also includes several that had medieval content