19 March 2023, 02:44

The Parker Library in Cambridge received an unusual manuscript addressed to Elizabeth I

The Parker Library in Cambridge received an unusual manuscript addressed to Elizabeth I
The Parker Library at Corpus Christi College (Cambridge, UK) has been enriched with a unique manuscript that was previously in a private collection. This is an unusually shaped parchment, made in the form of nine round medallions interconnected. The manuscript is dated 1573, it was presented as a gift to Queen Elizabeth I of England by the English Archbishop Matthew Parker, whose name the library bears. The document was attached to a luxurious salt shaker and two agate stones: one depicts St. George and the Dragon, the other is a cameo with a portrait of the queen.
Three rows of parchment medallions with a diameter of 40 mm are connected into a single whole. The central and one of the lower medallions contain images that can be seen on agate stones. The phrases around the queen's portrait are written in Latin and praise her beauty and justice. Parker also mentions himself in the manuscript, applying the words "fidus Achates" to himself, confirming his devotion to the monarch. The texts on the rest of the medallions describe in French and Latin the donated jewelry.
The Parker Library, where the manuscript is now kept, was based on his own collection of books. Over 550 manuscripts, about 1000 books, as well as personal documents of the archbishop are under the supervision of specialists. The total number of books printed before 1850 is 8,000 volumes.

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