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Codex Zographensis

About the Project

The project «The Codex Zographensis» continues a challenging programme of the National Library of Russia, aiming to create digitised versions of the landmark manuscripts. The programme begun in 2013 with the online resource «Laurentian Codex. 1377» was designed to open up universal access to the unique handwritten landmarks forming part of the cultural and historical heritage of Russia.

This digitalisation project is the eighth in a series, it deals with the rare Tetraevangelium Zographense, written in Glagolic ancient Slavic alphabet. This is a unique example of an almost complete Glagolitic book. The book, a major part of which was created in the 11th century, was kept in the Zograf Monastery on the Holy Mt. Athos for many years. In the mid 19th century, the precious manuscript was presented to Emperor Alexander II by the monks of the monastery. In 1861, it was transferred to the Manuscripts Department of the Imperial Public Library (now the National Library of Russia) where the manuscript have been carefully preserved until today.

In January 2016, the monks of the Zograf Monastery arrived in Russia and visited the Manuscripts Department. (Learn more... ) They informed about their work aimed to describe and digitize of the manuscripts from the monastery's ancient book depository, and to establish the «Zographensis Room» – an electronic research library of the Zograf Monastery at the Sofia University (Bulgaria).

We reproduced the Codex Zographensis in an electronic form to make this priceless cultural treasure accessible to the public. So, the National Library of Russia contributed to the common affair of preserving landmark manuscripts.

The facsimile digital edition of the Codex Zographensis was produced with use of the Information Retrieval System "Depositary", developed by the specialists of the National Library of Russia to form an electronic database of the manuscript holdings. This search system makes it possiple to link digital pages of the manuscript with the relevant reference information, stored in the database.

The fundamental idea of the project is an integrated approach to the representation of the ladndmark manuscript in a single entity of its elements. Therefore, the online resource, we presented here, will may become a valuable source for the general public, students and researchers, meeting their information needs and objectives.