Hi guys! In today’s post we would like to share some interesting moments from our special lesson at St. Scholastica’s Abbey
The monastery of Saint Scholastica is the most ancient benedectine monastery in the world. In particular, we visited the historic library where 20, 000 paper documents and 380 manuscripts, written one by one by amanuensis are kept.
Our lesson was based on the history of the book, from the manuscript to the first printed book, and our teacher for one day was Mrs Maria Antonietta Orlandi, who works in the library and is an expert in ancient books. She showed us several manuscripts explaining how they were made and how precious they were and are. She told us lots of interesting details and anecdotes.
We visited the ground floor of the library where there is an exhibition of documents describing St. Benedict’s life among other interesting things.
We also enjoyed other codes and some incunabula, as well as ancient books with details about Charlemagne and his empire.
While Mrs Orlandi was explaining we saw a singular book, something never seen before: what drew our attention was a gold-plated bible enriched with golden miniatures and colorful images.
Many of the manuscripts introduced by the guide had particular features. Indeed, we noticed that in some pages the first word or the pictures were stolen because made of gold-plate.
To sum up, our school trip was very interesting also because we found out new information about our local tradition and history. We had studied that the monks used to work at writing manuscripts but watching their work with our own eyes and all those beautiful details was really special. The first book in Italy was printed here in our town, Subiaco, but to be there where that happen and to know the story in detail make everything more intriguing.
We went up by bus but decided to come down walking and chatting among us and with our teachers. The sun was shining and it was warm. On the whole a positive and pleasant school day.
Till the next trip!
Francesco and Nicolò