Part of 14th century Icelandic text found in London

25.11.2021 - 11:38
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 Mynd: RÚV
An Icelandic academic has found part of an old Icelandic manuscript during research at the British Library in London.

The folio and two other texts are believed to be from Reynistaðarbók. 

According to Morgunblaðið, the find was made by Bjarni Gunnar Ásgeirsson, a doctoral student with the Árni Magnússon Institute, quoting him as saying: “[With them] we get a better insight into stories of miracles from previous centuries.” 

Reynistaðarbók is a compendium made by nuns at Reynistaðarklaustur in Skagafjörður during the 14th century and contains “various information on the history of the world, saints, miracles, and more,” the newspaper reports. 

Rare to find “new” manuscript 

It has become rare for researchers to find “new” historical Icelandic manuscripts and Bjarni Gunnar says this latest discovery is more like finding gold than mere paper. He believes it is the most significant such discovery since 1960, when Skarðsbók postulasagna was found; also in London. That manuscript was purchased by Icelandic banks and moved back to Iceland for preservation. 

The picture above is not of the new manuscript and is for illustration purposes only

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Alexander Elliott
Fréttastofa RÚV