This paper deals with the system of marginalia designed by the Franciscan Robert Grosseteste (1168-1253). The educational rule of marking quotations or memorable topics in the margin of a book by means of notae, i.e. symbols or mnemonic hooks, dates back to Quintilian, who also spoke of vestigia and simulacra. Grosseteste had developed a ready list (tabula) of about 400 symbols. Each of them identified a theological or philosophical topic. For instance, a overturned triangle symbolized the Antichrist, a circle with a dot inside was a mark for eyesight, and so on. The list performed a double function: excerpting by reading and later retrieving of what had been collected. As a consequence, writing as well reading were conceived of as a kind of mnemotechnique. The outcome was a topical concordance of the Bible and the Fathers. In retrospect, we know that Grosseteste’s system failed. Only 200 symbols were actually used and monks never excerpted all the 150 books they had selected for their scholarly work. This paper tries to suggest some reasons for that failure.
Making notae for Scholarly Retrieval: A Franciscan Case Study / Cevolini, Alberto. - 38(2017), pp. 343-367.
|Data di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Titolo:||Making notae for Scholarly Retrieval: A Franciscan Case Study|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||http://dx.doi.org/10.1484/M.USML-EB.1.100616|
|Serie:||UTRECHT STUDIES IN MEDIEVAL LITERACY|
|Titolo del libro:||The Annotated Book in the Early Middle Ages: Practices of Reading and Writing|
|A cura di:||Teeuwen, Mariken; van Renswoude, Irene|
|Citazione:||Making notae for Scholarly Retrieval: A Franciscan Case Study / Cevolini, Alberto. - 38(2017), pp. 343-367.|
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