Prudentius' Psychomachia
'Conflict Of The Soul'

Bern, Burgerbibliothek, Cod. 264, Lake Constance, c.900AD

Lot Taken Captive by the Army of the Four Kings


VICIVM FEROCES FORTE REGES COEPERANI
page 61 = folio 31r
Bern, Burgerbibliothek, Cod. 264
Parchment 145 folios. 27.3/28.3 x 21.5/22 cm region of Lake Constance around 900
Language: Latin, German
Manuscript Summary: The richly illustrated Prudentius manuscript, created around 900 in the region of Lake Constance, is counted among the outstanding examples of Carolingian book art. It contains all seven poems published by Prudentius in the year 405 as well as a later added eighth work. The codex was given to the episcopal church of Strasbourg by Bishop Erchenbald of Strasbourg (965-991) and later came into the possession of Jacques Bongars.
Source: Bern, Stadtbibliothek, Ms. 264

Prudentius (born in 348 in northern Spain, died after 405) spent most of his life following worldly pursuits, but later turned to writing, in which he aimed to glorify God and atone for his earlier sins. One of his most popular works is a poem called Psychomachia (Conflict of the Soul), which describes the battles between female personifications of human virtues and vices.

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See also "Carolingian Arms and Armor in the Ninth Century" by Simon Coupland, in Viator: Medieval and Renaissance Studies v.21 (1990)