Among the many new features of the Roman de la Rose Digital Library is the inclusion of detailed codicological descriptions for each of the digitized manuscripts available on the site. These descriptions provide a way to quickly assess the relevance of manuscripts for further study.
The codicological descriptions in the digital library follow the Analytical Description of Manuscripts (ADM) convention developed by Albert Derolez and adapted for us by Timothy Stinson. This convention divides the description into ten sections with information about the location, physical description, decoration, history, etc. There is both an English and French version of each description.
Codicological descriptions are accessed via the “Select a book by” list in the left-hand navigation bar. Clicking on “Date”, for example, will open a menu with several choices each from the 14th-, 15th- and 16th-centuries. At that point you can click on one of the individual manuscripts listed and see its description. When an individual description is shown in the main browser window, you will see “codicological description” highlighted in the left navigation bar. You may then click on either “Page turner” or “Browse images” to access page images of that manuscript.
There are currently “full” codicological descriptions for some manuscripts, “brief” descriptions for a few, and no descriptions for fewer. We will eventually have full descriptions for each manuscript.