Medieval manuscripts in Dutch Collections
Medieval manuscripts in Dutch Collections

General information

The language used in the database is English.

There are two main ways to search for a manuscript. Either search for a keyword in any of the fields or use (one or more) specific field(s). We have provided several indexes in the form of pdf-files.

Some search options have the auto completion-function: while typing the first letters of a name or keyword, this word will be automatically completed so that searching will be made easier and more precise. Others have a pick list where you can choose a specific word.

  • Simple search: enter a single keyword to search in all fields
  • Advanced search/Specific fields: type in a keyword to search in the particular field

The database is not case-sensitive; it therefore allows you to enter the keywords in upper- or lower-case. You will retrieve the same records. In case you want to make a Boolean search, make use of "  ".

e.g. "book of hours" offers different results than book of hours without " ".

The results will be listed in alphabetical order where the library (or institution) is first mentioned, followed by the collection and shelf mark. Beneath each entry, the unified title, the author and the year will appear. If the database yields no hits, a message to that effect will appear underneath the Google Map.

Use an asterix * in case your not sure how to spell a word: e.g. Bien* for Bienboec

You can also use the asterix * to retrieve all descriptions for which a certain field was filled in

e.g. an asterix in "medieval owners" provides a list of manuscripts of which the medieval owners are known

There are three types of descriptions in this database:

Single volumes = a codex containing one text (and therefore one title or generic term)

Composite volumes = several codices produced in different years, bound in one volume. The different manuscripts in these codices all have the suffix: 1, 2 etc.

e.g. Haarlem, SB : ms. 187 C 7 : 1

Texts in manuscripts: When a manuscript consists of more than one text, each text is described separately. These descriptions all have the suffix

e.g. Utrecht, UB : Cat. 176, ff. 001r-101r

Some records will have (deep- or hyper) links in various fields. These links will lead you to images and literature and in the future also to other websites, e.g. the Byvanck-database. This is a database of Illuminated manuscripts in the Netherlands and Dutch manuscripts abroad, made under direction of Dr. Anne S. Korteweg, former curator of medieval Manuscripts of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek. Or it will lead you to the Documentatie Handschriften/Manuscript references of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek (a database for the literature about manuscripts).

Koninklijke Bibliotheek - Nationale bibliotheek van Nederland