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Codex Zographensis

About the Project

The Codex Zographensis project continues a challenging programme of the National Library of Russia to digitize our most important manuscripts. The programme began in 2013 with the digitised Laurentian Codex. It aims to make the cultural and historical treasures available online.

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. They told about their efforts to create the «Zographensis Room» – a digital library of ancient manuscripts from the Zograf Monastery at the Sofia University (Bulgaria).

We produced an electronic version of the Codex Zographensis to provide free online access to it. So, the NLR contributed to the common affair of preserving the priceless manuscripts.

The online presentation of the manuscript was created with use of the Information Retrieval System "Depositary", developed by the Library's specialists to form a database of the manuscripts. This search system makes it possiple to link digital pages of the manuscript with the relevant reference information from 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.