Before I begin….did I mention that I hate squirrels?
Most of my regulars know that I have a huge library of books on international relations, Politics and History….I just cannot stop buying books….the feel, the smell and the look of a book is everything.
This Saturday I thought I would post a bit on books and a bit of history as well…..
I am not a fan of fiction I prefer real life and real situations….but a couple of first about novels of the past……
So you think 50 Shades was racy?
Researchers have discovered a long-lost version of a medieval romance “novel” containing a sex scene too steamy for even modern publishers.
The French poem, “Le Roman de la Rose” (The Romance of the Rose), tells the story of a courtier wooing a woman — the poems titular “rose.” It was the “Twilight” of its day, a crowd-pleasing romance that was reproduced again and again.
“‘Le Roman de la Rose’ really was the blockbuster of its day,” Marianne Ailes, a medievalist at the University of Bristol in the U.K. who identified the new fragments of the manuscript, said in a statement. “We know how popular it was from the number of surviving manuscripts and fragments, a picture our fragment adds to, and from the number of allusions to the text in other medieval writings.”
Then the discovery of what some say is the very first novel…..
The chest was opened. And suddenly, a chapter has been added to the oldest known version of what’s considered to be the world’s first novel. The original manuscript of the Tale of Genji—telling of the political and romantic life of Genji, the son of an ancient Japanese emperor—was completed around 1010 by a woman named by scholars as Murasaki Shikibu, but subsequently lost to history. Indeed, the oldest written copy known to researchers, transcribed by the poet Teika before his death in 1241, includes just four chapters of the 54-chapter story. Well, now five chapters, counting the 800-year-old pages just discovered in a house in Tokyo, per the Guardian. It seems ancestors of the home owner, descended from a feudal lord, had been quietly keeping Teika’s transcription of the fifth chapter of the Japanese epic since 1743.
In April, 72-year-old Motofuyu Okochi of the Mikawa-Yoshida feudal domain opened the chest used to store the chapter, allowing officials at cultural heritage foundation Reizeike Shiguretei Bunko to have a peek. They say it’s an authentic manuscript, roughly 5.5 inches wide by 8.5 inches long, with handwriting and a blue cover that perfectly matches Teika’s other chapters, which are registered as “national important cultural properties,” per Asahi Shimbun. Kyoto University professor Junko Yamamoto tells the outlet it’s a “very significant” find since research on the fifth chapter, which depicts Genji meeting his future wife, has been based on manuscripts completed 250 years after Teika’s version.
I have about 1500 books in my library….most of them I had to replace after Katrina for many got ruined with water damage……but I read about a new way to protect your books….
- Atlas Obscura, you can learn how to protect your library via medieval curses. Look, you can’t be too careful:
“For him that stealeth, or borroweth and returneth not, this book from its owner, let it change into a serpent in his hand & rend him. Let him be struck with palsy & all his members blasted. Let him languish in pain crying aloud for mercy, & let there be no surcease to his agony till he sing in dissolution. Let bookworms gnaw his entrails in token of the Worm that dieth not, & when at last he goeth to his final punishment, let the flames of Hell consume him for ever.”
What can I say after the destruction of Katrina I will try anything to protect my books…..
Have a great Saturday and enjoy family….be well be safe
I Read, I Wrote, You Know
“Lego Ergo Scribo”