Medieval Monsters - Damien Kempf and Maria L. Gilbert

British Library


Medieval Monsters by Damien Kempf and Maria L. Gilbert / ISBN 9780712357906 / A compact 96-page hardcover, 6 x 7.5 inches, illustrated throughout / Published by the British Library


The medieval world was teeming with monsters--on the edges of manuscript pages, on the fringes of maps, not to mention crowding in from all sides of the known world. Believed to dwell in exotic, remote areas, these inexplicable parts of God's creation aroused fear, curiosity, and wonder in equal measure. Powerfully captured in the illustrations that filled bestiaries, travel books, and even Bibles and devotional works, these misshapen brutes continue to delight audiences today with their vitality and humor.

Filled with satyrs, sea creatures, griffins, dragons, and devils, Medieval Monsters is a cornucopia of illustrations from medieval manuscripts that are at once fascinating, grotesque, and amusing. This successor to the British Library's Medieval Cats and Medieval Dogs provides an accessible and informative guide to bewitching demons, blemmyae, Cyclops, and multi-headed beasts of all sorts. Over one hundred wondrous and terrifying images show how strange creatures sparked artists' imaginations to incredible heights, while offering fascinating insights into the medieval mind.

Damien Kempf is a medieval historian specializing in the study and interpretation of manuscripts. Maria L. Gilbert is senior writer and editor at the J. Paul Getty Museum.

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