Ostromir Gospel


1534. Wallachian Moldavian version (Moldavian type). Scribe: Toma Logothete

F (30,5 21,5 sm). 320 leaves. 2 leaves are missing between fols. 87 and 88.
Parchment. Ink, cinnabar, colours, gold.

It is written in a semi-uncial hand. The titles of the Gospels, the prefaces to them, as well as the preface to the Annual Index to Gospel Readings, Indexes to Gospel Readings and Epistle Readings and the Orthodox Liturgical Calendar are arranged in two columns. Spellings are typical of manuscripts of Moldavian origin.

There are 2 portraits of St Matthew the Evangelist (fol. 7v) and St John the Evangelist (fol. 241v), painted in colours and gold. Two other portraits of St Mark the Evangelist and St Luke the Evangelist, which were originally between folios 94 and 95, 150 and 151, have been lost (they were cut out of the book). There are interlaced head-pieces (fols. 2r, 3v, 8r, 92v, 93v, 95r, 148v, 150r, 151r, 238r, 242r, 308r, 313v) and initials (fols. 8r, 95r, 151r, 242r) painted in colours with use of gold. The text contains headings and small initials in gold. The headings are written with use of ligatures. Some initials are ornamented. The text of the index on folio 320 are devided into two columns by a vertical gold pillar filled with colour dots.

The scribe's incscription on folio 306v states that he wrote the Four Gospels during the times of the devout Prince Ioan Petru, the Voivode of the Sovereign of the Moldavian land" and presented the book to the Monastery in Dobrovec, where are the Church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit. The inscription includes the scribe's name and the date: 1 Novemer 1534. The codex was copied onto splendidly prepared, white and thin parchment in a semi-uncial script, typical for manuscripts of Moldavian origin. The book is richly embellished with bright coloured miniatures and the abundance of gold. The manuscript contains corrections and additions to the text written in Russian spellings.

In 1852 the manuscript came into the Imperial Public Library along with the other contents of the historian Mikhail Pogodin's collection.

Shelfmark: . . 22.

© The National Library of Russia, 2007