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In the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library, today’s calligraphers meet medieval scribes in this new special exhibition resulting from a year-long collaboration between Hereford Cathedral Library and Shropshire Scribes.

Early in 2020, before the first lockdown, members of Shropshire Scribes visited Hereford Cathedral to take a close look at manuscripts from its renowned Chained Library and choose some as starting points for their own work. The ‘Hands across the centuries exhibition’ enables all to see the results: an amazingly diverse, lively and colourful display of new pieces alongside the medieval manuscripts which inspired them.

Shropshire Scribes is a well-established group of both amateur and professional calligraphers who hold monthly workshops and exhibit regularly in the Shrewsbury area. The group includes beginners and expert artists, from school age to octogenarian, and they combine centuries-old techniques and materials with contemporary approaches.

This exhibition allows visitors to experience the fascinating art and craft of calligraphy, an important part of which is the appreciation of the skills and artistry of medieval scribes.

Rosemary Firman, Cathedral Librarian, said: “The exhibition is a true meeting of minds, as well as hands, across the ages. Starting from some of our most beautiful manuscripts the Shropshire Scribes have produced an astonishing range of work: funny, thoughtful, poetic, skilful.”

Peter Furniss, Chairman of Shropshire Scribes, added: “This has been a wonderful opportunity to study the medieval manuscripts held in the Chained Library. We have been able to gain a better understanding of the practical aspects of the tools and materials used in their construction but most of all a glimpse into the medieval minds of their creators through the relationships of art and text on the pages.”

The exhibition runs from Monday 17 May to Saturday 17 July 2021 and is shown within the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library exhibition, during normal opening hours.

The normal admission charge of £6 per person applies (family tickets are also available).

An exhibition catalogue is also available online, showing the new works alongside the manuscripts which inspired them:

 More details can be found here:


08Jul 21This event has passed

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Event Location

Hereford Cathedral, Hereford HR1 2NG

Organiser: Hereford Cathedral

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