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Miroslav Gospel

Miroslav's Gospel 001

Miroslav Gospel

Miroslav’s Gospel is a 362-page illuminated manuscript on parchment with rich decorations such as illustrated initials and rich pictorial illustrations. It is one of the oldest surviving documents written in Church Slavonic and of significant historical significance. The book was traditionally kept at the Hilandar Monastery on Mount Athos, before it was presented to King Alexander I of Serbia, on the occasion of his visit to the monastery in 1896.

The book was initially transcribed in Kotor, a coastal town in modern-day Montenegro, between 1186 and 1190 from an earlier text. Most pages are by an unknown scribe from Zeta, a medieval region and province of the Serbian Grand Principality, with the last few pages written by the scribe Grigorije of Raška, also known as Grigorije the Pupil.

Miroslav’s Gospel is one of the oldest surviving illustrated texts in Cyrillic script. The 362 parchment sheets contain the four Gospels of the New Testament. The style of the iconography a mixture of Italian and Byzantine influences. The Gospel is named after Miroslav Zavidović who commissioned it and was a 12th-century Great Prince of Zachlumia from 1162 to 1190, an administrative division of the medieval Serbian Principality covering Herzegovina and southern Dalmatia.

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Miroslav Gospel

  • Title:                                  Miroslav Gospel
  • Serbian:                            Мирослављево Јеванђеље / Miroslavljevo Jevanđelje
  • Created:                            1186
  • Author:                             Grigorije the Pupil
  • Museum:                          National Museum of Serbia


“The wound heals, the scar remains.”
– Serbian Proverb


Photo Credit: 1) By prince Miroslav [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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