St. Gall Gospel Book

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Crucifixion in the St. Gall Gospel Book

The St. Gall Gospel Book or Codex Sangallensis 51 is an 8th-century Insular Gospel Book, written either in Ireland or by Irish monks in the Abbey of St. Gall in Switzerland, where it is now in the Abbey library of St. Gallen as MS 51.[1] It has 134 folios (so 268 pages). Amongst its 11 illustrated pages are a Crucifixion, a Last Judgement, a Chi Rho monogram page, a carpet page, and Evangelist portraits.

It is designated by 48 on the Beuron system, and is an 8th-century Latin manuscript of the New Testament. The text, written on vellum, is a version of the old Latin. The manuscript contains the text of the four Gospels on 134 parchment leaves (29 ½ × 22 ½ cm). It is written in two columns, in Irish semi-uncials. It has been in the St Gall library since at least the 10th century, when it is recorded in the earliest catalogue.[1]

The Latin text of the Gospel of John is a representative of the Western text-type. The text of the other Gospels represents the Vulgate version.[1]

St Gall was founded where Saint Gall had settled and died. He was an Irish monk and one of the traditional twelve companions of Saint Columbanus on his Hiberno-Scottish mission to the continent. The abbey maintained close links with Ireland and England in its early centuries.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Sangallensis 51 at the Stiffsbibliothek St. Gallen

Further reading[edit]

  • Gustav Scherrer, Verzeichniss der Handschriften der Stiftsbibliothek von St. Gallen, Halle 1875, S. 22-23.

External links[edit]