David Newlyn – Canon Alberic’s Scrapbook
Wistbook 008 / Edition series. 100 / Format. 3″cd and novella…
This botano-philosophical treatise is a classic of Renaissance scientific literature. Delicate, minutely detailed sketches of flora and fauna litter the pages, attesting in their exquisiteness to the wonder and beauty of a world viewed under the microscope for the first time. Accompanying the drawings are Alberic’s handwritten notes on taxonomies and classifications, designations of anatomical parts, therapeutic and practical uses, and allegorical meanings. A sober yet reverential tone is retained throughout, and the book ends with a sublime canticle praising the Divine Creator “who deigned in His Infinite Wisdom to bestow such Marvealous Complexity on even the Smallest of parts”. To read this book is to feel the lost intellectual and religious fervour of a prior age.
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