Polska pisza,ca w s'redniowieczu
(Writing in Medieval Poland)

Sous le patronage du Comité international de paléographie latine

Polska pisza,ca w s'redniowieczu (Writing in medieval Poland) is a series containing lists of copyists texts of colophones in manuscripts at present in Polish collections.

The value of the lists of medieval scribes and colophone formulas for research has already been stressed many times. Such collections are a basic source for research on history of the book and libraries in the Middle Ages. They are a valuable tool for scholars studying medieval culture, interested in the transmission of ideas and views in writing. They enable a precise definition of the role of a written text in the medieval community, in various social environment and social circles. They also enable the study of intellectual interests and reading habits of various social and professional circles, the study of educational and propaganda activities. In short, they enable a precise definition of by whom, when, where, when and what text was copied ; what for, and for whom or to whose order.

This type of historical source, basic for defining the social and territorial distribution of literary culture in the Middle Ages, has never been systematically published for Poland. The large repertory prepared by a group of Benedictines from Bouveret (Colophons de manuscrits occidentaux des origines au XVIe siècle, Fribourg 1965-1983, 6 vols.) contains hardly any names of copyists or colophones from Polish collections. The present series will be the first prepared in Poland and based on Polish materials. up to 1520 -- i.e. to the time when the manuscript book was replaced by the printed book and when we can state a full development of printing-houses in Poland. Every entry will comprise:

The traditional set of final indices (persons, places, dates, manuscripts) will be complemented with a list of the copyists' verse, dictums, formulas and remarks.

Manuscripts with a coplophone in full, or even reduced to some elements, constitute only a small part of the preserved manuscript production. Besides, modern library catalogues contain many other elements of description. Therefore, Polska pisza,ca w s'redniowieczu does not endeavour to supersede a catalogue of manuscripts in Polish libraries, but only to collect data of major importance for the social circulation and transmission of the texts in medieval and early modern Poland.

Hitherto published:

Manuscripta Medii Aevi Poloniae / Polska pisza,ca w s'redniowieczu.
Kopisci i kolofony rekopisów sredniowiecznych ze zbiorów poskich. Tom I : Biblioteki Warszawy pod redakcja naukowa E. Potkowskiego. Warszawa : Wydawnictwa Uniwersytetu Warszawskiego, 1995.

Further information from:
Prof. Edward POTKOWSKI,
Instytut Informacij Naukowej i Studiów Bibliologicznych
ul. Nowy S'wiat 69, PL-00-046 Warszawa, Poland
Fax: (+48) 22 - 826 85 69
  • Comité international de paléographie latine

    (octobre 2000)