The BOOK OF KELLS ( Latin : Codex Cenannensis; Irish : Leabhar Cheanannais; Dublin, Trinity College Library, MS A. I. , sometimes known as the BOOK OF COLUMBA) is an illuminated manuscript Gospel book in Latin , containing the four Gospels of the New Testament together with various prefatory texts and tables. It was created in a Columban monastery in Ireland or may have had contributions from various Columban institutions from both Britain and Ireland. It is believed to have been created c. 800 AD. The text of the Gospels is largely drawn from the Vulgate , although it also includes several passages drawn from the earlier versions of the Bible known as the Vetus Latina . It is a masterwork of Western calligraphy and represents the pinnacle of Insular illumination . It is also widely regarded as Ireland's finest national treasure .
The illustrations and ornamentation of the
Book of Kells
The manuscript today comprises 340 folios and, since 1953, has been bound in four volumes. The leaves are on high-quality calf vellum , and the unprecedentedly elaborate ornamentation that covers them includes ten full-page illustrations and text pages that are vibrant with decorated initials and interlinear miniatures and mark the furthest extension of the anti-classical and energetic qualities of Insular art. The Insular majuscule script of the text itself appears to be the work of at least three different scribes. The lettering is in iron gall ink , and the colours used were derived from a wide range of substances, many of which were imports from distant lands.
The manuscript takes its name from the
Abbey of Kells
* 1 History
* 1.1 Origin
* 1.2 Medieval period
* 1.2.1 Book of Kildare
* 1.3 Modern period * 1.4 Reproductions
* 2 Description
* 2.1 Contents
* 2.2 Text and script
* 2.2.1 Errors and deviations
* 2.3 Decoration
* 3 Purpose * 4 In film * 5 Notes * 6 Sources * 7 Further reading * 8 External links
The Book of Kells, (folio 292r), circa 800, showing the lavishly
decorated text that opens the
Gospel of John
Folio 27r from
Book of Kells
Book of Kells
There are at least five competing theories about the manuscript's
place of origin and time of completion. First, the book, or perhaps
just the text, may have been created at
Kells Abbey was plundered and pillaged by Vikings many times in the 10th century, and how the book survived is not known. The earliest historical reference to the book, and indeed to the book's presence at Kells, can be found in a 1007 entry in the Annals of Ulster . This entry records that "the great Gospel of Columkille, (Columba) the chief relic of the Western World, was wickedly stolen during the night from the western sacristy of the great stone church at Cenannas on account of its wrought shrine". The manuscript was recovered a few months later—minus its golden and bejewelled cover—"under a sod ". It is generally assumed that the "great Gospel of Columkille" is the Book of Kells. If this is correct, then the book was in Kells by 1007 and had been there long enough for thieves to learn of its presence. The force of ripping the manuscript free from its cover may account for the folios missing from the beginning and end of the Book of Kells. The description in the Annals of the book as "of Columkille"—that is, having belonged to, and perhaps being made by Columba—suggests that the book was believed at that time to have been made on Iona.
Regardless, the book was certainly at Kells in the 12th century, when
land charters pertaining to the
Abbey of Kells
Abbey of Kells
Book Of Kildare
The 12th-century writer
Gerald of Wales
This book contains the harmony of the
Four Evangelists according to
Since Gerald claims to have seen this book in Kildare, he may have seen another, now lost, book equal in quality to the Book of Kells, or he may have misstated his location.
Book of Kells
Over the years, the
Book of Kells
The manuscript's rise to worldwide fame began in the 19th century.
The association with St. Columba, who died the same year Augustine
brought Christianity and literacy to Canterbury from Rome, was used to
demonstrate Ireland's cultural primacy, seemingly providing
"irrefutable precedence in the debate on the relative authority of the
Irish and Roman churches".
Over the centuries, the book has been rebound several times. During an 18th-century rebinding, the pages were rather unsympathetically cropped, with small parts of some illustrations being lost. The book was also rebound in 1895, but that rebinding broke down quickly. By the late 1920s, several folios had detached completely and were kept separate from the main volume. In 1953, bookbinder Roger Powell rebound the manuscript in four volumes and stretched several pages that had developed bulges. Two volumes can normally be seen displayed at Trinity, one opened at a major decorated page, and one opened to show two text pages with smaller decorations.
In 2000, the volume containing the
Gospel of Mark was sent to
In 1951, the Swiss publisher Urs Graf Verlag Bern produced the first facsimile of the Book of Kells. The majority of the pages were reproduced in black-and-white photographs, but the edition also featured forty-eight colour reproductions, including all the full-page decorations. Under licence from the Board of Trinity College Dublin, Thames and Hudson produced a second facsimile edition in 1974. This edition included all the full-page illustrations in the manuscript and a representative section of the ornamentation of the text pages, together with some enlarged details of the illustrations. The reproductions were all in full colour, with photography by John Kennedy, Green Studio, Dublin.
In 1979, Swiss publisher Faksimile-Verlag Luzern requested permission to produce a full-colour facsimile of the book. Permission was initially denied, because Trinity College officials felt that the risk of damage to the book was too high. By 1986, Faksimile-Verlag had developed a process that used gentle suction to straighten a page so that it could be photographed without touching it and so won permission to publish a new facsimile. After each page was photographed, a single-page facsimile was prepared so the colours could be carefully compared to the original and adjustments made where necessary. The completed work was published in 1990 in a two-volume set containing the full facsimile and scholarly commentary. One copy is held by the Anglican Church in Kells, on the site of the original monastery.
Mario Kleff also reproduced folios from the
Book of Kells
In 1994, Bernard Meehan, Keeper of Manuscripts at Trinity College Dublin, produced an introductory booklet on the Book of Kells, with 110 colour images of the manuscript. His 2012 book contained more than 80 pages from the manuscript reproduced full-size and in full colour.
A digital copy of the manuscript was produced by Trinity College in 2006 and was made available for purchase through Trinity College on DVD-Rom. It included the ability to leaf through each page, two pages at a time or look at a single page in a magnified setting. There were also a number of commentary tracks about the specific pages as well as the history of the book. Users were given the option to search by specific illuminated categories including animals, capitols and angels. It retailed for approximately €30 but has since been discontinued. The Faksimile-Verlag images are now online at Trinity College's Digital Collections portal.
Book of Kells
The book's current dimensions are 330 by 250 mm. Originally, the folios were of no standard size, but they were cropped to the current size during a 19th-century rebinding. The text area is approximately 250 by 170 mm. Each text page has 16 to 18 lines of text. The manuscript is in remarkably good condition considering its great age, though many pages have suffered some damage to the delicate artwork due to rubbing. The book must have been the product of a major scriptorium over several years, yet was apparently never finished, the projected decoration of some pages appearing only in outline. It is believed that some 30 folios of the original manuscript have been lost over the centuries. Ussher counted 344 folios in 1621, but several leaves had already been lost by then. The overall estimate is based on gaps in the text and the absence of certain key illustrations.
The extant book contains preliminary matter, the complete text of the
Gospels of Matthew , Mark and Luke , and the
Gospel of John through
John 17:13. The remainder of John and an unknown amount of the
preliminary matter is missing and was perhaps lost when the book was
stolen early in the 11th century. The remaining preliminary matter
consists of two fragmentary lists of Hebrew names contained in the
Gospels, Breves causae (
Gospel summaries), Argumenta (short
biographies of the Evangelists), and Eusebian canon tables . It is
probable that, like the
There are two fragments of the lists of Hebrew names; one on the recto of the first surviving folio and one on folio 26, which is currently inserted at the end of the prefatory matter for John. The first list fragment contains the end of the list for the Gospel of Matthew. The missing names from Matthew would require an additional two folios. The second list fragment, on folio 26, contains about a fourth of the list for Luke. The list for Luke would require an additional three folios. The structure of the quire in which folio 26 occurs is such that it is unlikely that there are three folios missing between folios 26 and 27, so that it is almost certain that folio 26 is not now in its original location. There is no trace of the lists for Mark and John.
The first list fragment is followed by the canon tables of Eusebius of Caesarea . These tables, which predate the text of the Vulgate, were developed to cross-reference the Gospels. Eusebius divided the Gospel into chapters and then created tables that allowed readers to find where a given episode in the life of Christ was located in each of the Gospels. The canon tables were traditionally included in the prefatory material in most mediaeval copies of the Vulgate text of the Gospels. The tables in the Book of Kells, however, are almost unusable because the scribe condensed the tables in such a way as to make them confused. In addition, the corresponding chapter numbers were never inserted into the margins of the text, making it impossible to find the sections to which the canon tables refer. The reason for the omission remains unclear: the scribe may have planned to add the references upon the manuscript's completion, or he may have deliberately left them out so as not to spoil the appearance of pages. Folio 19 contains the beginning of the Breves causae of Luke.
The Breves causae and Argumenta belong to a pre- Vulgate tradition of manuscripts. The Breves causae are summaries of the Old Latin translations of the Gospels and are divided into numbered chapters. These chapter numbers, like the numbers for the canon tables, are not used on the text pages of the Gospels. It is unlikely that these numbers would have been used, even if the manuscript had been completed, because the chapter numbers corresponded to old Latin translations and would have been difficult to harmonise with the Vulgate text. The Argumenta are collections of legends about the Evangelists. The Breves causae and Argumenta are arranged in a strange order: first come the Breves causae and Argumenta for Matthew, followed by the Breves and Argumenta for Mark, then, quite oddly, come the Argumenta of both Luke and John, followed by their Breves causae. This anomalous order mirrors that found in the Book of Durrow, although in the latter instance, the misplaced sections appear at the very end of the manuscript rather than as part of a continuous preliminary. In other insular manuscripts, such as the Lindisfarne Gospels , the Book of Armagh , and the Echternach Gospels , each Gospel is treated as a separate work and has its preliminaries immediately preceding it. The slavish repetition in Kells of the order of the Breves causae and Argumenta found in Durrow led scholar T. K. Abbott to the conclusion that the scribe of Kells had either the Book of Durrow or a common model in hand.
TEXT AND SCRIPT
Book of Kells
The manuscript is written primarily in insular majuscule with some occurrences of minuscule letters (usually e or s). The text is usually written in one long line across the page. Françoise Henry identified at least three scribes in this manuscript, whom she named Hand A, Hand B, and Hand C. Hand A is found on folios 1 through 19v, folios 276 through 289, and folios 307 through the end of the manuscript. Hand A, for the most part, writes eighteen or nineteen lines per page in the brown gall-ink common throughout the West. Hand B is found on folios 19r through 26 and folios 124 through 128. Hand B has a somewhat greater tendency to use minuscule and uses red, purple and black ink and a variable number of lines per page. Hand C is found throughout the majority of the text. Hand C also has greater tendency to use minuscule than Hand A. Hand C uses the same brownish gall-ink used by hand A and wrote, almost always, seventeen lines per page. Luke's genealogy of Jesus (extends over three pages)
Errors And Deviations
There are a number of differences between the text and the accepted Gospels. In the genealogy of Jesus , which starts at Luke 3:23, Kells names an extra ancestor.
Matthew 10:34b The canonised Bible reads "I came not to send peace, but a sword," but the manuscript reads gaudium ("joy") where it should read gladium ("sword") and so translates as "I came not to send peace, but joy."
The lavishly decorated opening page of the
Gospel according to John
Book of Kells
The text is accompanied by many full-page miniatures , while smaller painted decorations appear throughout the text in unprecedented quantities. The decoration of the book is famous for combining intricate detail with bold and energetic compositions. The characteristics of the Insular manuscript initial, as described by Carl Nordenfalk, here reach their most extreme realisation: "the initials ... are conceived as elastic forms expanding and contracting with a pulsating rhythm. The kinetic energy of their contours escapes into freely drawn appendices, a spiral line which in turn generates new curvilinear motifs...". The illustrations feature a broad range of colours, with purple, lilac, red, pink, green, and yellow being the colours most often used. Earlier manuscripts tend toward more narrow palettes: the Book of Durrow, for example, uses only four colours. As is usual with Insular work, there was no use of gold or silver leaf in the manuscript. The pigments for the illustrations, which included red and yellow ochre, green copper pigment (sometimes called verdigris ), indigo, and possibly lapis lazuli , would have been imported from the Mediterranean region and, in the case of the lapis lazuli, from northeast Afghanistan. Though the presence of lapis lazuli has long been considered evidence of the great cost required to create the manuscript, recent examination of the pigments has proven that lapis lazuli was not used.
The lavish illumination programme is far greater than any other
Gospel book. There are ten surviving full-page
illuminations including two evangelist portraits , three pages with
the four evangelist symbols , a carpet page , a miniature of the
Virgin and Child , a miniature of Christ enthroned, and miniatures of
Arrest of Jesus and the
Temptation of Christ . There are thirteen
surviving full pages of decorated text including pages for the first
few words of each of the Gospels. Eight of the ten pages of the canon
tables have extensive decoration. It is highly probable that there
were other pages of miniature and decorated text that are now lost. In
addition to these major pages, there are a host of smaller decorations
and decorated initials throughout the text; in fact only two pages
have no decoration.
Folio 2r of the
Book of Kells
The extant folios of the manuscript start with the fragment of the glossary of Hebrew names. This fragment occupies the left-hand column of folio 1r. A miniature of the four evangelist symbols, now much abraded, make up the right-hand column. The miniature is oriented so that the volume must be turned ninety degrees to view it properly. The four evangelist symbols are a visual theme that runs throughout the book. They are almost always shown together to emphasise the doctrine of the four Gospels' unity of message.
The unity of the Gospels is further emphasised by the decoration of the Eusebian canon tables. The canon tables themselves inherently illustrate the unity of the Gospels by organising corresponding passages from the Gospels. The Eusebian canon tables normally require twelve pages. In the Book of Kells, the makers of the manuscript planned for twelve pages (folios 1v through 7r) but for unknown reasons, condensed them into ten, leaving folios 6v and 7r blank. This condensation rendered the canon tables unusable. The decoration of the first eight pages of the canon tables is heavily influenced by early Gospel Books from the Mediterranean, where it was traditional to enclose the tables within an arcade (as seen in the London Canon Tables ). The Kells manuscript presents this motif in an Insular spirit, where the arcades are not seen as architectural elements but rather become stylised geometric patterns with Insular ornamentation. The four evangelist symbols occupy the spaces under and above the arches. The last two canon tables are presented within a grid. This presentation is limited to Insular manuscripts and was first seen in the Book of Durrow. Folio 7v contains an image of the Virgin and Child . This is the oldest extant image of the Virgin Mary in a Western manuscript.
The remainder of the book is broken into sections with the divisions set off by miniatures and full pages of decorated text. Each of the Gospels is introduced by a consistent decorative programme. The preliminary matter is treated as one section and introduced by a lavish decorative spread. In addition to the preliminaries and the Gospels, the "second beginning" of the Gospel of Matthew is also given its own introductory decoration.
The preliminary matter is introduced by an iconic image of the Virgin and Child (folio 7v). This miniature is the first representation of the Virgin in a Western manuscript. Mary is shown in an odd mixture of frontal and three-quarter pose. This miniature also bears a stylistic similarity to the carved image on the lid of St. Cuthbert\'s coffin of 698. The iconography of the miniature may derive from an Eastern or Coptic icon.
The miniature of the Virgin and Child faces the first page of text and is an appropriate preface to the beginning of the Breves Causae of Matthew, which begins Nativitas Christi in Bethlem (the birth of Christ in Bethlehem). The beginning page (folio 8r ) of the text of the Breves Causae is decorated and contained within an elaborate frame. The two-page spread of the miniature and the text makes a vivid introductory statement for the prefatory material. The opening line of each of the sections of the preliminary matter is enlarged and decorated (see above for the Breves causae of Luke), but no other section of the preliminaries is given the same level of treatment as the beginning of the Breves Causae of Matthew. Folio 291v contains a portrait of John the Evangelist .
The book was designed so that each of the Gospels would have an elaborate introductory decorative programme. Each Gospel was originally prefaced by a full page miniature containing the four evangelist symbols, followed by a blank page. Then came a portrait of the evangelist which faced the opening text of the Gospel which was given an elaborate decorative treatment. The Gospel of Matthew retains both its Evangelist portrait (folio 28v ) and its page of Evangelist symbols (folio 27r, see above). The Gospel of Mark is missing the Evangelist portrait but retains its Evangelist symbols page (folio 129v ). The Gospel of Luke is missing both the portrait and the Evangelist symbols page. The Gospel of John, like the Gospel of Matthew, retains both its portrait (folio 291v, see at right) and its Evangelist symbols page (folio 290v ). It can be assumed that the portraits for Mark and Luke and the symbols page for Luke at one time existed but have been lost. The use of all four of the Evangelist symbols in front of each Gospel is striking and was intended to reinforce the message of the unity of the Gospels.
The decoration of the opening few words of each Gospel was lavish. These pages were, in effect, turned into carpet pages. The decoration of these texts is so elaborate that the text itself is almost illegible. The opening page (folio 29r) of Matthew may stand as an example. (See illustration at left.) The page consists of only two words: Liber generationis ("The book of the generation"). The lib of Liber is turned into a giant monogram which dominates the entire page. The er of Liber is presented as an interlaced ornament within the b of the lib monogram. Generationis is broken into three lines and contained within an elaborate frame in the right lower quadrant of the page. The entire assemblage is contained within an elaborate border. Folio 29r contains the incipit to the Gospel of Matthew .
The border and the letters themselves are further decorated with elaborate spirals and knot work , many of them zoomorphic. The opening words of Mark, Initium evangelii ("The beginning of the Gospel"), Luke, Quoniam quidem multi , and John, In principio erat verbum ("In the beginning was the Word"), are all given similar treatments. Although the decoration of these pages was most extensive in the Book of Kells, these pages were decorated in all the other Insular Gospel Books.
Gospel of Matthew begins with a genealogy of Jesus . At Matthew
1:18, the actual narrative of Christ\'s life starts . This "second
beginning" to Matthew was given emphasis in many early
so much so that the two sections were often treated as separate works.
The second beginning begins with the word Christ. The Greek letters
chi and rho were normally used in mediaeval manuscripts to abbreviate
the word Christ. In Insular
Gospel Books, the initial Chi Rho monogram
was enlarged and decorated. In the Book of Kells, this second
beginning was given a decorative programme equal to those that preface
the individual Gospels.
Folio 32 verso has a miniature of Christ
enthroned. (It has been argued that this miniature is one of the lost
evangelist portraits. However, the iconography is quite different from
the extant portraits, and current scholarship accepts this
identification and placement for this miniature.) Facing this
miniature, on folio 33 recto , is the only carpet page in the Book of
Kells, which is rather anomalous; the
In the Book of Kells, the Chi Rho monogram has grown to consume the entire page. The letter chi dominates the page with one arm swooping across the majority of the page. The letter rho is snuggled underneath the arms of the chi. Both letters are divided into compartments which are lavishly decorated with knot work and other patterns. The background is likewise awash in a mass of swirling and knotted decoration. Within this mass of decoration are hidden animals and insects. Three angels arise from one of the cross arms of the chi. This miniature is the largest and most lavish extant Chi Rho monogram in any Insular Gospel Books and is the culmination of a tradition that started with the Book of Durrow .
Book of Kells
The verso of the folio containing the Arrest of Christ contains a
full page of decorated text which begins "Tunc dicit illis ". Facing
the miniature of the Temptation is another full page of decorated text
(folio 203r "Iesus autem plenus"). In addition to this page, five
other full pages also receive elaborate treatment. In Matthew, there
is one other full-page treatment (folio 124r , "Tunc crucifixerant Xpi
cum eo duos latrones"). In the
Gospel of Mark, there are also two
pages of decorated text (folio 183r , "Erat autem hora tercia", and
folio 187v, " quidem postquam"). The
Gospel of Luke contains two
pages of fully decorated text (folio 188v, "Fuit in diebus Herodis ",
and folio 285r , "Una autem sabbati valde"). Although these texts do
not have miniatures associated with them, it is probable that
miniatures were planned to accompany each of these texts and have
either been lost or were never completed. There is no surviving full
page of text in the
Gospel of John other than the Incipit. However, in
the other three Gospels, all the full pages of decorated text, except
for folio 188c, which begins the Nativity narration, occur within the
Passion narrative. However, since the missing folios of John contain
the Passion narrative, it is likely that John contained full pages of
decorated text that have been lost. Almost all of the folios of
Book of Kells
The decoration of the book is not limited to the major pages.
Scattered through the text are decorated initials and small figures of
animals and humans often twisted and tied into complicated knots. Many
significant texts, such as the Pater Noster have decorated initials.
The page containing text of the
Beatitudes in Matthew (folio 40v ) has
a large miniature along the left margin of the page in which the
letter B which begins each line is linked into an ornate chain. The
genealogy of Christ found in the
Gospel of Luke (folio 200r ) contains
a similar miniature in which the word qui is repeatedly linked along
the left margin. Many of the small animals scattered throughout the
text serve to mark a "turn-in-the-path" (that is, a place where a line
is finished in a space above or below the original line). Many other
animals serve to fill spaces left at the end of lines. No two of these
designs are the same. No earlier surviving manuscript has this massive
amount of decoration. The decorations of the
Book of Kells
The decorations are all high quality and often highly complex. In one decoration, which occupies a one-inch square piece of a page, there are 158 complex interlacements of white ribbon with a black border on either side. Some decorations can only be fully seen with magnifying glasses, although lenses of the required power are not known to have been available until hundreds of years after the book's completion. The complicated knot work and interweaving found in Kells and related manuscripts have many parallels in the metalwork and stone carving of the period. Since their gradual rediscovery from the 19th century on, these designs have also had an enduring popularity. Many of these motifs are used today in popular art including jewellery and tattoos.
The book had a sacramental rather than educational purpose. Such a large, lavish Gospel would have been left on the high altar of the church and removed only for the reading of the Gospel during Mass, with the reader probably reciting from memory more than reading the text. It is significant that the Chronicles of Ulster state the book was stolen from the sacristy , where the vessels and other accoutrements of the Mass were stored, rather than from the monastic library. Its design seems to take this purpose in mind; that is, the book was produced with appearance taking precedence over practicality. There are numerous uncorrected mistakes in the text. Lines were often completed in a blank space in the line above. The chapter headings that were necessary to make the canon tables usable were not inserted into the margins of the page. In general, nothing was done to disrupt the look of the page: aesthetics were given priority over utility.
The 2009 animated film
The Secret of Kells tells a fictional story of
the creation of the
Book of Kells
* ^ A B C D E Henry 1974, 150.
* ^ All manuscripts and dates discussed in Henry 1974, 150–151.
* ^ Calkins discusses the major manuscripts in turn pp.30–92, as
* ^ Sullivan 1952, 19–20.
* ^ Meehan 1994, 91.
* ^ Kennedy, Brian. "Celtic Ireland." The
Book of Kells
* Alexander, J.J.G. (1978). Insular Manuscripts: Sixth to Ninth Century. London: Harvey Miller. ISBN 0-905203-01-1 . * Calkins, Robert G. (1983). Illuminated Books of the Middle Ages. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. ISBN 0-8014-1506-3 . * de Hamel, Christopher (2016). Meetings with Remarkable Manuscripts. Allen Lane. ISBN 978-0-241-00304-6 . * Dodwell, Charles Reginald (1993). The pictorial arts of the West, 800–1200. New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-06493-4 . * Fuchs, Robert; Doris Oltrogge (1994). "Colour material and painting technique in the Book of Kells". In Felicity O'Mahony. The Book of Kells: Proceedings of a conference at Trinity College, Dublin, September 6–9, 1992. Brookfield, Vt.: Scolar Press. pp. 133–171. ISBN 0-85967-967-5 . * Henderson, George (1987). From Durrow to Kells: The Insular Gospel-books, 650–800. New York: Thames and Hudson. ISBN 0-500-23474-4 . * Henry, Françoise (1974). The Book of Kells: Reproductions from the Manuscript in Trinity College, Dublin. New York: Alfred A Knopf. ISBN 0-394-49475-X . * Meehan, Bernard (1994). The Book of Kells: An Illustrated Introduction to the Manuscript in Trinity College Dublin. New York: Thames and Hudson. ISBN 0-500-27790-7 . * Nordenfalk, Carl (1977). Celtic and Anglo-Saxon Painting: Book Illumination in the British Isles 600–800. New York: George Braziller. ISBN 0-8076-0825-4 . * Sullivan, Edward (1952). The Book of Kells. London: Studio Publications. ISBN 1-85170-196-6 . * Walther, Ingo F.; Norbert Wolk (2001). Codices Illustres: The World's Most Famous Illuminated Manuscripts, 400 to 1600. Köln: Taschen. ISBN 3-8228-5852-8 . * Werner, Martin (June 1972). "The Madonna and Child Miniature in the Book of Kells, Part II". Art Bulletin. College Art Association. 54 (2): 129–139. doi :10.2307/3048962 . JSTOR 3048962 .
* Alton, E. H. and P. Meyer. Evangeliorum quattuor Codex Cenannensi. 3 vols. Bern: Urs Graf Verlag, 1950-1951. * Brown, T. J. "Northumbria and the Book of Kells". Anglo-Saxon England I (1972): 219–246. * De Paor, Liam. "The world of the Book of Kells," in Ireland and early Europe: essays and occasional writings on art and culture. Dublin: Four Courts Press, 1997. ISBN 1-85182-298-4 * Farr, Carol Ann. The Book of Kells: Its Function and Audience (British Library Studies in Mediaeval Culture, 4). London: British Library Henley, David (2012). Pages from the Book of Kells. Chiang Mai: Cognoscenti Books. ASIN: B00AN4JVI0 * Friend, A. M., Jr. "The Canon Tables of the Book of Kells". In Mediæval Studies in Memory of A. Kingsley Porter, ed. W. R. K. Koehler. Vol. 2, pp. 611–641. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1939. * Lewis, Susanne. "Sacred Calligraphy: The Chi Rho Page in the Book of Kells". Traditio 36 (1980): 139–159. * McGurk, P. "Two Notes on the Book of Kells