Book of Kells high resolution images
This set of hand drawn royalty free images stock images from the Celtic Illuminated Manuscripts Collection are available as instant download in EPS and WMF formats.
The Book of Kells at the library of the Trinity College, Dublin Ireland
It was believed that only angels could have written the Book of Kells.The detail in this Irish illuminated manuscript is an amazing exemple of Irish Art, no one symbol, illuminated initial, celtic knot, interlace or page decoration element is duplicated elsewhere in the parchement. Some of the lacing is incredible, in one of the pages on a square of one inch there are over 180 interlacings. Approximately 30 leaves have been lost, the remaining 680 pages (340 folios) of the Book of Kells contains the four gospels in latin, a list of Hebrew names, and the Eusebian cannons. All the calfskin pages are illuminated. The hand of more than one scribe is recognized in the script, three of them being the most relevant.
The Roman Half Uncial was established as the minuscule script for humble manuscripts at the time St. Patrick began his mission to Ireland in 432. The Irish land was behind the influence of the Roman Empire, was unfamiliar with latin and practically had no language of its own, St. Patrick's followers learned and adopted the Roman Half Uncial. The Celtic artistic tradition influenced the script, and Ireland virtual isolation from outside influences made it possible for Irish Calligraphy to evolve in insular script or Irish Uncial. The Irish scribes created an exagerated serif and formalized the script so the humble minuscule Half Uncial became a formal majuscule by the 6th century, the Insular Majuscule.
The Book of Kells is the most spectacular version of this script; the ligatures, letters stretched, calligraphy blending with decorative elements are just superb. Also a less formal and faster form of Celtic calligraphy developed: the Insular Minuscule, there are beautiful samples of this script in the pages of the New Testament. It is uncertain where this Celtic art manuscript was first begun, but evidence points to the Isle of Iona, which was the center of influence of St. Columba and the home of his church. Later, during the Viking raids of the 9th century, it was moved for its protection to Kells Monastery, County Meath, Ireland. The Book of Kells remained in the monastery at Kells until 1541, when the Roman Catholic Church took it for protection. In 1661, it was returned to Ireland and given to the Trinity Library at the Trinity College of Dublin, Ireland by Archbishop Ussher. It has remained at the Trinity College since then and is the most important work that the university library contains. Being the Book of Kells at the Trinity Library, in the Trinity College probably started the tradition of calling typical Celtic decorative elements like Trinity Knot, Trinity Cross, etc.; elements that have nothing to do with what the Cristian Religion calls "Trinity"
A new step in the Illuminated Manuscript Project
Celtic Illuminated Manuscripts
After much research and study, followed by countless hours drafting and redrawing, AlfredoM Graphic Art Studio is proud to present this collection dedicated to ancient Celtic illuminated manuscript art.
Our first three volumes of this collection are dedicated to the beautiful carpet pages, decorative elements, borders and illuminated capitals from the Book of Kells and the Lindisfarne Gospels dating as far back as 1200 years.
The first volume is comprised of 160 wonderfully ornate and unusual Celtic lettering, also includes a comprehensive set of Writing Tools for the Insular Majuscule Calligraphy. The Insular majuscule font, a new specialized font face true to the original hand writing has been created especially to accompany this new collection of Illuminated letter art and the Celtic illuminated Caps from the book of Kells.
The second volume comprises borders, carpet pages, Celtic knots borders and large decorative elements from the Book of Kells and the Lindisfarne gospels beautifully redrawn.
The third volume includes almost all the animals that decorate the pages of the Book of Kells and over 130 page decoration elements and punctuation symbols. The set of those first three volumes allowing recreation of pages of text very similar to ancient manuscripts of that period.
The forth volume includes our largest collection of Celtic borders, headers, dividers, carpet pages and page decorative elements from many of the ancient Celtic illuminated manuscripts: the Book of Durrow, the Book of Mac Durnan, the St. Gallen Manuscript 1395, the Gospel Book MS 40618, the St. Gallen Cod. Sang. 1395, the Book of Deer, the St. Gall Gospel, the Gospels of Mael Brigte' Armagh, the Book of Dimma, the Leofric Missal, the South Hampton Psalter, the Stowe Missal, the St. Gallen Cod. 60, , the St. Gallen Cod. 348, Gospel Book MS Egerton 768, St Gallen Cod. 51, St Chad Gospel and others.