Codicology is the study of codices (sing. codex), i.e. of handwritten books from the classical and mediaeval period. Formerly, codicology was a part of palaeography, but in recent times, palaeography has been defined as the study of handwritten script, while codicology is the study of early books as such. Codicology thus is akin to the modern study of books, but it has a focus on the handwritten aspects of book-making as opposed to the study of printed books.

There is a specific terminology for the description of codices. Denis Muzerelle (formerly at IRHT in Paris) has created an online source, Vocabulaire Codicologique, which also contains terms in other languages.

Internet resources

Codicologia at IRHT (Institut de recherche et d’histoire des textes) in Paris

See also manuscript.

In other languages

DE: Kodikologie
FR: codicologie
IT: codicologia


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