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We prepared the earliest version of this catalogue for an exhibition in conjunction with the conference, Christ among the Medieval Dominicans: Representations of Christ in the Texts and Images of the Order of Preachers, held at the University of Notre Dame, 6–9 September 1995.

Three years after the original conference, a collection of essays was published with the same title: Christ among the Medieval Dominicans: Representations of Christ in the Texts and Images of the Order of Preachers, edited by Kent Emery, Jr., and Joseph Wawrykow (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1998). We substantially revised the catalogue for that publication, and added several items from a new collection of rare books acquired by the University Library too recently to have been included in the exhibition. The text has been reviewed but not significantly revised for this Web version.

The Library's holdings in manuscripts, incunables and sixteenth-century printed books containing Dominican materials are surprisingly ample. Many of the volumes catalogued here were given to the Library by Professor Astrik L. Gabriel, now Professor emeritus in the University. It is most fitting, therefore, that this bio-bibliographical catalogue be in his honor, in recognition of his many contributions to medieval studies at Notre Dame and to our library collections.

We hope that, besides recording holdings in the University Library, this catalogue will profile the intellectual and literary life of the Dominican Order from the thirteenth through sixteenth centuries. As one would expect, the entries document the transitions and changes from medieval intellectual and manuscript culture to early-modern intellectual and print culture. Frankly, we find the evidence of continuity more remarkable: the continued presentation of medieval authors and texts in the sixteenth century; the perdurance of medieval literary genres and topics among early-modern writers; relationships between convents and printers that are analogous to those between convents and stationers in the Middle Ages; on a conceptual level, at least — and sometimes more literally — a continuity of traditions of text presentation and format. In short, the medieval book, to the idea and design of which the Dominican Order contributed so much, continued to have a vibrant life that defies our conventional historiographical categories and notions of the “radical transformation” purportedly wrought by the invention of printing.

Special thanks are due to Sara Weber for designing and mounting the Web version of this catalogue.

Kent Emery, Jr.

Associate Professor, Program of Liberal Studies
& Fellow of the Medieval Institute

Louis E. Jordan, III

Head of Special Collections &
The Medieval Institute Library

University of Notre Dame
Copyright © 2002

Dept. of Special Collections
University of Notre Dame
102 Hesburgh Library
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Telephone: (574) 631-0290
Fax: (574) 631-6308
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