Aurea Gemma <Gallica> 2.45-46
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[2.45] Through this opuscule you can write without reprehension and can authoritatively reprehend and confound the writings of others, deceived by a faulty method.1 Knowledge of writing is of this efficacy, that it will bind the facts of the present to the memory of the past, lest perchance memory might perish. Even those deeds which it appears are fleeting by their very own nature, if these were commended in letters, would somehow be rendered eternal. Led thus by this consideration, we strive to immortalize acts done in our time by the suffrage of a charter. Thus let it be known to those present and future, etc...

[2.46] Since the deeds of mortals follow temporal change, it is useful to commend these in letters, so that they are thus able to convey any present whatsoever to their posterity. Thus is made known etc...


1 Section II ends with two model letter beginnings, consisting of complete Schriftlichkeitsarengen joined to fragmentary publication clauses, similar to the five letter beginnings of Brugge cod. 528, fol. 15v which follow Section IIIa (ie. 3a.85, see following note and below, 3b.59). These five letter openings of the Brugge codex are followed by a blank folio, ruled in the same manner (43 lines per side). The next work in this Sammelhandschrift, a glossed Computus Garlandi, is written with a fourteenth-century hand and pen-flourished initials on folios ruled in a different manner (25 lines per side). --- On the Schriftlichkeitsarengen, see HEINRICH FICHTENAU Arenga: Spätantike und Mittelalter im Spiegel von Urkundformeln MIöG Erg. Bd. 18 (Graz-Cologne 1957) 133-5 and PETER RüCK Die Urkunden der Bischöfe von Basel bis 1213 Quellen und Forschungen zur Basler Geschichte 1 (Basel 1966) 259-62. Preferring the term Verbriefungsarengen are PETER JOHANEK Die Frühzeit der Siegelurkunde im Bistum Würzburg (Würzburg 1962) 257 and ANTON GOSSI Das Urkundenwesen der Bischöfe von Basel im 13. Jahrhundert Quellen und Forschungen zur Basler Geschichte 5 (Basel 1974) 122-26.

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© Steven M. Wight, Los Angeles 1998
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