Manuscript Research Lab

The Manuscript Research Lab (MMRL) works in collaboration with the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library at St. John's University in Collegeville to provide guidance on the study of manuscripts. The Laboratory is intended to provide practical guidance and training in the areas of text studies, text editing, paleography and codicology.

The workshop will:

  • introduce participants to the study of the medieval book as a physical object and a carrier of texts
  • provide an overview of the history of select scripts and hands from antiquity to the end of the Middle Ages
  • give participants a chance to practice transcribing various medieval scripts from books and documents
  • introduce principles and conventions of documentary editing
  • allow participants to handle and examine original materials from the medieval period
  • orient participants to the use of digital and printed facsimiles and catalogues.

The workshop is open to advanced undergraduate and graduate students from any institution as well as to faculty, independent scholars, and other individuals interested in manuscript studies and having a background in classics, medieval studies, or library studies.

Participants have access to the Alcuin Library at Saint John's, which contains a collection of rare printed books and extensive research materials supporting manuscript studies, including many books and journals difficult to find elsewhere in the state.

The 2021 Manuscript Workshop was held virtually May 31-June 11. This year's Workshop focused on medieval Arabic manuscripts and featured sessions from Dr. Lucia Raggetti (University of Bologna) as well as Hill Museum staff and researchers. 

The 2021 workshop was priced at $250. Funds are available for University of Minnesota graduate students officially registered for the Medieval Studies minor. Other students are encouraged to inquire about the availability of funds from their own academic departments.

Information on the 2022 Research Lab will be posted as it is released.