University of South Carolina

A selection of text from the newly acquired 13th-century Bible
A selection of text from the newly acquired 13th-century Bible.

Continued: Bible

Gwara says there are fewer opportunities to acquire medieval manuscripts through auctions because most manuscripts have already been acquired by libraries, museums and private collectors.

“The market for medieval holdings is finite, and it’s drying up,” he says.

Gwara says a complete Missal (book of the order of the Mass) and complete Breviary (book of prayers and hymns), two essential manuscripts at a cost of approximately $7,500 each, would enhance USC’s teaching collection.

The English pocket Bible will be featured in an exhibit that will open in the spring at the Hollings Library. Titled “The English Bible: An Exhibition for the 400th Anniversary of the King James Bible, 1611, the exhibit will be on display March through June.

For more information and images of USC’s medieval manuscript collections, visit the website:

University of South Carolina Libraries
University Libraries is the only member of the Association of Research Libraries in the state of South Carolina and is ranked among the top 40 public research libraries in the United States by the organization. The Ernest F. Hollings Special Collections Library consists of the South Carolina Political Collections, Digital Collections and the Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections. The Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections acquires, preserves and makes available rare books, manuscripts and specialized research collections from a range of historical periods to students, faculty and others around the world. The department’s holdings have grown seven fold in the past 25 years to 150,000 volumes.

Dr. Scott Gwara
Scott Gwara earned his doctoral degree in medieval studies from the University of Toronto in 1993. He also earned degrees from Yale University, Cambridge University and Hamilton College. Gwara has published widely on Old English, medieval Latin and medieval manuscripts. He teaches medieval English language and literature at the University of South Carolina.

By Office of Media Relations

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Posted: 09/09/10 @ 11:15 AM | Updated: 09/09/10 @ 2:45 PM | Permalink

A biblical acquisition

  • What: Bible, created around the year 1240
  • Who: USC medievalist Scott Gwara organized the acquisition and secured the outside funding
  • Where: New Bible to join university's other medieval holdings in Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections

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