Ancient manuscript from Anglo-Saxon England was one of the earliest English translation of the Gospels

Anita Durairaj

The Lindisfarne Gospels are considered to be one of the most spectacular ancient manuscripts from Anglo-Saxon England.

The Lindisfarne Gospels were produced between the years 715 - 720 in Lindisfarne. Lindisfarne is an island that is located off the northeast coast of England. The place is often termed the "Holy Island" because of its history as a center of Celtic Christianity.

The Lindisfarne Gospels are thought to have been produced by a monk called Eadfrith who later became the Bishop of Lindisfarne. Eadfrith produced an illuminated manuscript consisting of 258 leaves of calfskin vellum. The text was copied from the St. Jerome's Latin translation of the Christian Bible. The text is a copy of the four gospels in the Bible. The manuscript is also known for its artwork.

Eadfrith spent at least five years creating the Lindisfarne Gospels. The artwork in the manuscript incorporates styles from the Anglo-Saxons, the Celts, Romans, Byzantines, and the Copts. These were the people who lived in the Britain of the seventh century.

After Eadfrith died, the Lindisfarne Gospels underwent several changes. Additions were made to the manuscript in the late 10th century including an Old English gloss. This came to be known as one of the earliest translations of the Gospels into English.

Through the ages, the original leather binding of the manuscript has been lost but the manuscript itself survived intact.

Today, the Lindisfarne Gospels have survived through 13 centuries of history and are currently held by the British Library where they can be seen by visitors.

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.


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