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Yale Library Acquires The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Edition

Seven-Volume Limited Edition Will Reside at the Yale University Divinity School Library

The Yale University Library and Saint John's University today announced the acquisition of The Saint John’s Bible Heritage Edition by Yale University. A reception celebrating the arrival of the volumes was held on May 2 in the Day Missions Room of the Yale Divinity Library.

The Saint John's Bible is the only handwritten and illuminated Bible commissioned by a Benedictine Monastery since the advent of the printing press more than 500 years ago. The Heritage Edition is a work of art in itself, a fine art reproduction of the original manuscript created under the direction of Donald Jackson, the artistic director of the original manuscript. Only 299 sets of the Heritage Edition were created.

"The mission of The Saint John's Bible is to ignite the spiritual imagination of people around the world," said Fr. Robert Koopmann, OSB, president of Saint John’s University. "We are delighted that generations of Yale students, faculty, staff and visitors will have access to these inspiring and historic volumes.”

The Yale acquisition represents a collaboration between the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, and the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, an interdisciplinary graduate center at Yale, and will be housed at the Divinity Library.

“The Beinecke Library and the Institute of Sacred Music are pleased to help bring such an outstanding work to Yale,” commented E.C. Schroeder, Director of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. “The acquisition of The Saint John’s Bible will provide an opportunity for scholars, faculty and students to compare this modern edition with the Beinecke’s Medieval manuscripts and early printed Bibles.”

In addition to Yale University, these fine art editions of The Saint John's Bible can also be experienced at more than 50 universities, museums, libraries and churches around the world. Original pages of The Saint John's Bible are always on exhibition at the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library (www.hmml.org) on the Saint John's Abbey and University Campus in Collegeville, Minnesota. The public can see original pages from the Bible as part of its touring exhibition program at the New Mexico History Museum (www.nmhistorymuseum.org) now through December 31, 2012.

The Saint John's Bible is a 15-year collaboration of scripture scholars and theologians at Saint John's Abbey and University in Collegeville, Minn. with a team of artists and calligraphers at the scriptorium in Wales, United Kingdom under the direction of Donald Jackson, one of the world's foremost calligraphers and Senior Scribe to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth's Crown Office at the House of Lords. Written and drawn entirely by hand using quills and paints hand-ground from precious minerals and stones such as lapis lazuli, malachite, silver and 24-karat gold, The Saint John's Bible celebrates the tradition of medieval manuscripts while embracing 21st century technology to facilitate the design process and collaboration between Saint John's in Collegeville and the scriptorium in Wales.

For more information on the Yale University Library: www.library.yale.edu For more information about The Saint John's Bible, please visit www.saintjohnsbible.org.