The sale of Western Manuscripts and Miniatures on 5 July is the largest for many years. It includes over a hundred manuscripts from the famous Bergendal Collection, of Toronto, mainly of monastic texts from England, France and Italy. Complete Carolingian and Romanesque manuscripts are almost unobtainable these days: the group includes 22 books from before the thirteenth century, almost 25% of the selection. Here are medieval authors as rare and evocative as Smaragdus of St-Mihiel, Defensor of Ligugé, Anselm of Canterbury (three lots, no less), Bonizo of Sutri, and Alulfus of Tournai.
There are manuscripts from the abbeys of St-Julien in Tours, St-Michel-sur-Meurthe, and the Carmelites in Paris; and from the Cistercians Morimondo and Chiaravalle della Columba; from the abbey of St Bavo in Ghent; from the Dominicans of Augsburg and the church of Warburg; and perhaps from the abbeys of Westminster and Reading. The sale also includes illuminated miniatures from the collection of Robert and Dorothy Senior (1917-1994 and 1930-2009) and books as remarkable as an unrecorded Romanesque illuminated Psalter from Trier, an extraordinary Bohemian Ovid, and the Books of Solomon illuminated for Anne de Polignac (1495-1554).