Marquard Gude (1635-1689) and his manuscripts

Cod. Guelf. 1 Gud. lat., fol 8v
(Liber floridus of Lambert of St-Omer, 12th cent.)

A cooperative project between the Herzog August Bibliothek and the Zentrum für Mittelalter- und Frühneuzeitforschung at the Universität Göttingen

During his short life, Marquard Gude (1635-1689) travelled throughout Europe and spent a significant amount of money diligently putting together a monumental collection of Latin and Greek manuscripts from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. It may well be the most important private manuscript collection from the seventeenth century to be found outside Italy. Fortunately, this collection was not dispersed after Gude’s death. Due to efforts on the part of the librarian Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, in 1710 almost the whole of the collection was acquired for the Ducal Library at Wolfenbüttel.

The collection of 469 manuscripts contains many rare and valuable items of the utmost importance for tracing the transmission of texts from classical antiquity and the medieval period.

The project aims to achieve both a better understanding of the provenances and of the ways in which Gude acquired the manuscripts. The study will also focus on the history of the transmission, reception and impact of selected manuscripts and an analysis of their texts.


Funding: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
Duration: October 2011 – May 2017 (publication is still pending)
Researcher: Dr. Patrizia Carmassi
Phone: +49(0)5331-808-119, Fax -165