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Book/Printed Material Codex Amiatinus. Biblia Sacra / Bibbia Amiatina

About this Item


  • Codex Amiatinus.

Other Title

  • Biblia Sacra / Bibbia Amiatina


  • The Codex Amiatinus is the earliest surviving manuscript of the complete Bible in the Latin Vulgate. It is considered the most accurate copy of Saint Jerome's original translation and was used in the revision of the Vulgate by Pope Sixtus V in 1585-90. Preserved in the Medicea Laurenziana Library in Florence, it is one of the world's most important manuscripts. In his Ecclesiastical History of England, the English historian and scholar known as the Venerable Bede (673-735) records that the Benedictine monk Ceolfrid (642-716), abbot of Wearmouth and Jarrow and a teacher of Bede, commissioned three large Bibles from the abbey's Wearmouth-Jarrow scriptorium, two of which were placed in each of the twin churches in Wearmouth and Jarrow and the third of which was intended as a gift for the pope. The Bibles were copied from the sixth-century Codex Grandior, now lost. Of the three texts, only the exemplar that later came to be known as the Codex Amiatinus survives. Completed by seven different scribes, it was presented to Pope Gregory II by associates of Ceolfrid, who died on his way to Rome in 716. The manuscript was kept for centuries in the Abbey of the Holy Savior at Monte Amiata in Tuscany before it came to the Laurentian Library in 1782, following the suppression of the religious orders by Pietro Leopoldo I, Grand Duke of Tuscany (ruled 1765--90). The codex features two major illuminations, a portrait of the Old Testament prophet Ezra and a depiction of Christ in Majesty. Ezra is shown writing a manuscript on his lap, seated before an open book cupboard containing a Bible in nine volumes. The illumination is among the oldest images in the Western world to show a bookcase and the bindings of books. The codex also includes a two-page plan of the Tabernacle in the Temple at Jerusalem. The manuscript shows many Byzantine influences, particularly in the illuminations, and it was long thought to be of Italo-Byzantine, rather than of English, origin. A distinguishing feature of the codex is its large size. It consists of 1,030 folios measuring around 505 by 340 millimeters. Each bifolium required an entire calfskin to produce.


  • Ceolfrid, of Wearmouth, Saint, 642-716 Patron.
  • Gregory II, Pope, died 731 Recipient.

Created / Published

  • Wearmouth and Jarrow, England : [publisher not identified], [688 to 713]


  • -  United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland--Durham
  • -  United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland--Sunderland
  • -  688 to 713
  • -  Bible
  • -  Illuminations
  • -  Miniatures (Illuminations)


  • -  Title devised, in English, by Library staff.
  • -  Original resource extent: 1030 folios, vellum : illuminated ; 36 x 25.5 centimeters of text on pages of 50 x 34 centimeters.
  • -  Reference extracted from World Digital Library: Richard Gameson, "The Cost of the Codex Amiatinus," Notes & Queries 39, number 1 (March 1992).|George Hind, "St. Ceolfrid," in The Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 3 (New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908). .|"The Codex Amiatinus: the Earliest Surviving Complete Bible in the Latin Vulgate, Containing One of the Earliest Surviving Images of Bookbindings and a Bookcase (Circa 688 -- 716)," in Jeremy Norman's, External
  • -  Original resource at: Medicea Laurenziana Library, Florence.
  • -  Content in Latin.
  • -  Description based on data extracted from World Digital Library, which may be extracted from partner institutions.


  • 1 online resource.

Source Collection

  • Illuminated Manuscripts from Europe

Digital Id

Library of Congress Control Number

  • 2021668243

Online Format

  • compressed data
  • pdf
  • image

Additional Metadata Formats

IIIF Presentation Manifest

Rights & Access

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Credit Line: [Original Source citation], World Digital Library

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Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Ceolfrid, Of Wearmouth, Saint, 642-716 Patron, and Pope Gregory Ii. Codex Amiatinus. [Wearmouth and Jarrow, England: publisher not identified, 688 to 713, 0688] Pdf.

APA citation style:

Ceolfrid, O. W. & Gregory Ii, P. (0688) Codex Amiatinus. [Wearmouth and Jarrow, England: publisher not identified, 688 to 713] [Pdf] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Ceolfrid, Of Wearmouth, Saint, 642-716 Patron, and Pope Gregory Ii. Codex Amiatinus. [Wearmouth and Jarrow, England: publisher not identified, 688 to 713, 0688] Pdf. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.