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Jean-Patrice Boudet (Université d'Orléans): 'Magical Images in Late Medieval Manuscripts'

Stargates - The Magic of Images from Heka to the Monas Hieroglyphica is a lecture series dedicated to the material aspects of making magical images. Following a chronological sequence in order to underline the transformations, continuities, and discontinuities from ancient to “modern” practices, this series builds on the legacy of the Warburg Institute scholars D.P. Walker and Frances Yates. 

In the last centuries of the Western Middle Ages, following the translation of magical texts from Arabic (and even Hebrew and Greek) into Latin, dozens of manuscripts include magical images of all kinds. Other endogenous magical traditions, such as the Ars notoria, generate their own images. We will try to draw up a typology of these images, designated by technical terms (imagines, figurae, sigilla, characteres, pentaculae, candariae, notae, etc.), to see what are the functions of these images and the relations they have with the texts in which they are inserted, and to ask the question of whether the whole of these texts and images form together a more or less coherent system of representation of the world.

Organised by Luisa Capodieci (Frances A. Yates Long Term Fellow, Warburg Institute).