The blind spot: British Library MS. Add. 17906 and the edition of the Chronicles of Pero López de Ayala

Rosa María Rodríguez Porto, Covadonga Valdaliso Casanova, Ricardo Pichel Gotérrez

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

Resumé

At a time when the massive digitization of the holdings of most of the major research libraries allows us to increasingly rely on the online consultation of much of the materials under scrutiny, multiplying the options for cross-checked referencing and quick verification, there are still manuscripts that remain under the radar of scholarship. That is the case of MS Add. 17906, an overlooked copy of Pero López de Ayala’s chronicles dated c. 1441–1460 by Charles Faulhaber
in Philobiblon (manid 1872). Since it only resurfaced in the British Library in 1847, it was not included by Eugenio Llaguno Amírola in his edition of these works—it seems to have escaped Jerónimo Zurita as well—and neglect has
continued in the modern critical editions published in the last decades. No doubt, the fact of not having ever been photographed and even less digitised by the British Library, despite having been summarily described by Pascual de Gayangos as “an old and valuable copy” of Ayala’s text, has contributed to the eclipse of this manuscript. Reproduction and canonicity tend to go together, and yet, a close inspection of the codex reveals an untold story, that of this remarkable manuscript and, in general, of the successive attempts at editing Ayala’s chronicles from the very moment of the author’s death. The materiality of the manuscript provides the clues to locate its production in the courtly realm c. 1420, as part of an ambitious project to create an “official version” of Ayala’s chronicles accompanied by illustrations that would have highlighted the messianic overtones of the Trastamaran policy. In fact, this is the only illustrated copy of the chronicles preserved so far, although its pictorial cycle was never
completed, perhaps because the working materials left by Ayala of his unfinished Crónica de Enrique III posed unsurmountable problems to the compilers. The codicological analysis of the manuscript also suggests that the
enterprise was resumed c. 1440–1450, only to be abandoned again. This rich picture of earliest—and failed—attempts to edit the Ayalan chronicles only emerges, though, when connecting the dots across disciplines (literary history, codicology, and art history), and overcoming the temptation of working only on what we can see on the screen of our laptops.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftJournal of Medieval Iberian Studies
ISSN1754-6559
StatusUnder udarbejdelse - 2022

Fingeraftryk

Chronicles
British Library
Manuscripts
Materiality
Codicology
Radar
Temptation
Art History
Eclipse
Literary History
Laptop
Death of the Author
Canonicity
Holdings
Neglect
Critical Edition
Digitization
Codex
Editing
Scrutiny

Citer dette

Rodríguez Porto, R. M., Valdaliso Casanova, C., & Pichel Gotérrez, R. (2022). The blind spot: British Library MS. Add. 17906 and the edition of the Chronicles of Pero López de Ayala. Manuskript under forberedelse.
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The blind spot: British Library MS. Add. 17906 and the edition of the Chronicles of Pero López de Ayala. / Rodríguez Porto, Rosa María; Valdaliso Casanova, Covadonga; Pichel Gotérrez, Ricardo .

I: Journal of Medieval Iberian Studies, 2022.

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

TY - JOUR

T1 - The blind spot: British Library MS. Add. 17906 and the edition of the Chronicles of Pero López de Ayala

AU - Rodríguez Porto, Rosa María

AU - Valdaliso Casanova, Covadonga

AU - Pichel Gotérrez, Ricardo

PY - 2022

Y1 - 2022

N2 - At a time when the massive digitization of the holdings of most of the major research libraries allows us to increasingly rely on the online consultation of much of the materials under scrutiny, multiplying the options for cross-checked referencing and quick verification, there are still manuscripts that remain under the radar of scholarship. That is the case of MS Add. 17906, an overlooked copy of Pero López de Ayala’s chronicles dated c. 1441–1460 by Charles Faulhaberin Philobiblon (manid 1872). Since it only resurfaced in the British Library in 1847, it was not included by Eugenio Llaguno Amírola in his edition of these works—it seems to have escaped Jerónimo Zurita as well—and neglect hascontinued in the modern critical editions published in the last decades. No doubt, the fact of not having ever been photographed and even less digitised by the British Library, despite having been summarily described by Pascual de Gayangos as “an old and valuable copy” of Ayala’s text, has contributed to the eclipse of this manuscript. Reproduction and canonicity tend to go together, and yet, a close inspection of the codex reveals an untold story, that of this remarkable manuscript and, in general, of the successive attempts at editing Ayala’s chronicles from the very moment of the author’s death. The materiality of the manuscript provides the clues to locate its production in the courtly realm c. 1420, as part of an ambitious project to create an “official version” of Ayala’s chronicles accompanied by illustrations that would have highlighted the messianic overtones of the Trastamaran policy. In fact, this is the only illustrated copy of the chronicles preserved so far, although its pictorial cycle was nevercompleted, perhaps because the working materials left by Ayala of his unfinished Crónica de Enrique III posed unsurmountable problems to the compilers. The codicological analysis of the manuscript also suggests that theenterprise was resumed c. 1440–1450, only to be abandoned again. This rich picture of earliest—and failed—attempts to edit the Ayalan chronicles only emerges, though, when connecting the dots across disciplines (literary history, codicology, and art history), and overcoming the temptation of working only on what we can see on the screen of our laptops.

AB - At a time when the massive digitization of the holdings of most of the major research libraries allows us to increasingly rely on the online consultation of much of the materials under scrutiny, multiplying the options for cross-checked referencing and quick verification, there are still manuscripts that remain under the radar of scholarship. That is the case of MS Add. 17906, an overlooked copy of Pero López de Ayala’s chronicles dated c. 1441–1460 by Charles Faulhaberin Philobiblon (manid 1872). Since it only resurfaced in the British Library in 1847, it was not included by Eugenio Llaguno Amírola in his edition of these works—it seems to have escaped Jerónimo Zurita as well—and neglect hascontinued in the modern critical editions published in the last decades. No doubt, the fact of not having ever been photographed and even less digitised by the British Library, despite having been summarily described by Pascual de Gayangos as “an old and valuable copy” of Ayala’s text, has contributed to the eclipse of this manuscript. Reproduction and canonicity tend to go together, and yet, a close inspection of the codex reveals an untold story, that of this remarkable manuscript and, in general, of the successive attempts at editing Ayala’s chronicles from the very moment of the author’s death. The materiality of the manuscript provides the clues to locate its production in the courtly realm c. 1420, as part of an ambitious project to create an “official version” of Ayala’s chronicles accompanied by illustrations that would have highlighted the messianic overtones of the Trastamaran policy. In fact, this is the only illustrated copy of the chronicles preserved so far, although its pictorial cycle was nevercompleted, perhaps because the working materials left by Ayala of his unfinished Crónica de Enrique III posed unsurmountable problems to the compilers. The codicological analysis of the manuscript also suggests that theenterprise was resumed c. 1440–1450, only to be abandoned again. This rich picture of earliest—and failed—attempts to edit the Ayalan chronicles only emerges, though, when connecting the dots across disciplines (literary history, codicology, and art history), and overcoming the temptation of working only on what we can see on the screen of our laptops.

KW - manuscript studies

KW - medieval historiography

KW - Medieval book illumination

M3 - Journal article

JO - Journal of Medieval Iberian Studies

JF - Journal of Medieval Iberian Studies

SN - 1754-6559

ER -