University of Notre Dame


Hesburgh Libraries

Rare Books & Special Collections

Medieval and Renaissance

Detail of an initial from the index to Jean Gerson's Opera, printed in Strassburg in 1488.

The Medieval and Renaissance Manuscript Collection will be unavailable beginning June 15, 2015 due to conservation treatment and reorganization. Manuscripts and fragments in all fonds may not be requested at this time. Access will resume on August 25, 2015 with the start of Fall Semester. All queries may be directed to Dr. David T. Gura.

The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections houses a variety of Medieval and Renaissance materials. The manuscript collections are comprised of 60 codices and a number of single leaf or extracted fragments spanning the late eleventh to early sixteenth century. A survey of binding fragments in the print collection was recently undertaken, which yielded over 400 additional fragments. The manuscript collections are mainly Latin language material with a few vernacular witnesses in English, French, Italian, and Germanic languages.

The Department also holds over 100 incunabula and a modest numismatic collection. Post-1500 imprints are vast in number and broadly collected, with exceptional holdings in Renaissance editions of Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio. A diverse collection of deluxe medieval manuscripts facsimiles are also kept in the Department.