So it seems fitting to focus on all things medieval in Norman and at the University. This includes showcasing rare books from OU’s History of Science Collections for a glimpse into how medieval scholars viewed their world.
Getting Medieval in Norman, OK
Every year since 1977, The Medieval Fair has provided one of the largest gatherings of musicians, artisans, and performers to Norman, Oklahoma. Not only is admission free but families and children of all ages flock to Reeves Park to partake in a flashback to the Medieval period (the 5th-15th centuries).
The Medieval Fair of Norman, along with the University of Oklahoma, offers a free lecture series co-sponsored by the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and hosted at the Norman Public Library, 225 N. Webster, 6:30pm-7:30pm. The next presentation is on April 17, 2015, by Dr. David Anderson, of the Department of English at OU. He will speak on “How Shakespeare’s Romans Die: The Ethics of Suicide in Julius Caesar.”
“The Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies at the University of Oklahoma promotes the study of the period in Western history that saw the development of such major components of modern life as parliamentary democracy, the nation-state, English and other modern languages, printing, Islam, global exploration, heliocentric astronomy, romantic love–and the universities in which we research and teach all these subjects.Some thirty-five faculty at OU contribute to the study of these and many other facets of the Middle Ages and Renaissance.” Faculty across campus and across the disciplines are associated with the Center.
Manuscripts in the Special Collections
While the Special collections on the 5th floor of Bizzell Library (Bass Business History, Bizzell Bible, History of Science, and the John and Mary Nichols Collection) are comprised predominantly of printed books, these collections also include manuscript materials.
Many 16th and 17th-century printed books in the History of Science Collections are bound with music manuscripts from the medieval period. Other books have manuscript text as part of their front and back covers. Many books have handwritten notes and marginalia sprinkled throughout the text. Much of this awaits transcription and study.
Early Modern Editions of Medieval Works
The collections holdings in early printed books include editions of the works of medieval authors as well as the works of earlier authors widely read in this period.
Among the incunabula held by the Collections (books printed before 1500) are works by these authors:
Among the holdings of medieval authors in the History of Science Collections, are these 16th-century editions of works by Albert the Great and Hildegard of Bingen.
Materials for the Study of the History of Science, Technology & Medicine
In addition to rare books and primary source materials, the History of Science Collections has significant holdings in non-rare materials: modern scholarly works, critical editions and facsimiles, introductory texts, and reference books.
The following is a select list of works relevant to the study of science, technology, the environment and medicine in the medieval period, available through OU Libraries.
Reference & Research Guides
- Thomas F. Glick, Steve Livesey, Faith Wallis, Medieval Science, Technology and Medicine: An Encyclopedia (New York: Rutledge, 2005)
- Claudia Kren, Medieval Science and Technology: A Selected, Annotated Bibliography (New York: Garland, 1985)
- David C. Lindberg and Michael H. Shank, The Cambridge History of Science v. 2 Medieval Science (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013) ebook
- Rushdi Rashed, Encyclopedia of the History of Arabic Science (London: Rutledge, 1996)
- Richard C. Dales, The Scientific Achievement of the Middle Ages (Philadelphia: Pennsylvania University Press, 1973)
- Edward Grant, Physical Science in the Middle Ages (New York: Wiley, 1971 ed.)
- Gad Freudenthal, Science in Medieval Jewish Culture (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2011)
- David C. Lindberg, Science in the Middle Ages (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978)
- Lynn White, Medieval Technology and Social Change (London: Oxford University Press, 1974)
Critical Editions & Facsimiles – Collections
- Edward Grant, A Source Book in Medieval Science (Cambridge: Harvard University Preess, 1974)
- Nancy Siraisi, Medieval and Early Renaissance Medicine: An Introduction to Knowledge and Practice (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1990)
- Faith Wallis, Medieval Medicine: A Reader (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2010)
Critical Editions & Facsimiles – Individual Authors
- Avicenna’s De anima (Arabic text) : being the psychological part of Kitab al-Shifa’a (London: New York, 1959)
- Roger Bacon, The ‘Opus majus’ of Roger Bacon (Oxford: Clarendon, 1897)
- Jean Buridan, Quaestiones super libros De generatione et corruptione Aristotelis : a critical edition with an introduction (Leiden: Brill, 2010)
- Jamil Ragep, Naṣīr al-Dīn al-Ṭūsī’s Memoir on astronomy = al-tadhkira fī ʻilm al-hayʼa (Spring-Verlag, 1993)
- Priscilla Throop and Mary Elder Jacobsen, Hildegard von Bingen’s Physica: The Complete English Translation of her Classic Work on Health and Healing (Rochester, Vt.: Healing Arts Press, 1998)
Disciplines & Topics
- Sara M. Butler, Forensic Medicine and Death Investigation in Medieval England (New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis, 2015)
- Hilary M. Carey, Courting Disaster: Astrology at the English Court and University in the Later Middle Ages (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1992)
- Marshall Clagett, The Science of Mechanics in the Middle Ages (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1959)
- Menso Folkerts, The Development of Mathematics in Medieval Europe: The Arabs, Euclid, Regiomontanus (Burlington, Vt. : Ashgate Variorum, 2006)
- Keith D. Lilley, Mapping Medieval Geographies: Geographic Encounters in the Latin West and beyond, 200-1600(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013 )
- Stephen C. McCluskey, Astronomies and Cultures in Early Medieval Europe (Cambridge University Press, 1998)
- William Stahl, Martinanus Capella and the Seven Liberal Arts (New York: Columbia University Press, 1971)
Also of note:
- Kathleen Davis, Medievalisms in the Postcolonial World: The Idea of “the Middle Ages” Outside Europe (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009)
- James Muldoon, Travellers, Intellectuals, and the World beyond Medieval Europe (Burlington, Vt.: Ashgate, 2010)
- Marianne O’Doherty, The Indies and the Medieval West: Thought, Report, Imagination (Turnhout: Brepols, 2013)
For more information on books and materials in the history of science, technology and medicine in the collection, see the Guide to Resources in History of Science, Technology and Medicine. More Reference Works More on Primary Sources
Professor Steven J. Livesey of the Department of the History of Science has developed a database of Medieval Commentators on Aristotle and Peter Lombard’s Sentences
Visiting the History of Science Collections
While tours and class visits are not possible as we undergo renovation on the 5th floor of Bizzell Library in preparation for the Galileo’s World Exhibit (scheduled for the 2015-16 academic year), researchers continue to have individual access to our books and materials.
For a glimpse into the books in the 5th floor collections, see these guides to past exhibits: Crossing Cultures, Living Library (iBooks exhibit). Also, see our online galleries. Watch for our forthcoming post on Arabic language resources and materials for the study of the history of science, technology and medicine in Islamic cultures.
Please contact the staff for assistance (405) 325-2741. Or contact us:
- Dr. Kerry Magruder, Curator firstname.lastname@example.org
- Dr. JoAnn Palmeri, Research Coordinator email@example.com
- Dr. Melissa Rickman, Registrar firstname.lastname@example.org
See the Collections blog for more information on resources, activities, and events relating to OU’s 5th floor special collection libraries.