Why facsimiles?

ratzyEach illuminated codex is a unique and unrepeatable exemplar, whose fragility has to be protected by conservation in locations that are often inaccessible not only to the public but even to scholars. Facsimile editions are made so as to allow every detail of the original to be appreciated. Very often the original is restored on the occasion of its reproduction. Hidden treasures from the world’s great libraries are thus brought to light so that collectors and bibliophiles can add to their collection titles otherwise unobtainable, the very ones that libraries and museums are unable to show to visitors.

But the creation of facsimile editions is not an exclusive and elitist activity, reserved for a small circle of sophisticated collectors and bibliophiles. Thanks to the facsimile, museums and libraries can easily display extremely fragile works without risk, or can add to and complete their own collections. A facsimile can be handled without problems and can travel with ease, allowing scholars to carry out comparative stylistic and palaeographic studies, and giving the public a chance to admire otherwise “invisible” masterpieces.

A valuable instrument

ecoNot only are these facsimiles objects of high aesthetic value, fascinating works of art, but they are also - as Umberto Eco has several times asserted - bibliographical instruments of the greatest scholarly, cultural and educational importance, that make it possible for otherwise unavailable texts to be studied without difficulty.


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