Blog Article – Representations of Disabilities and Illnesses in Medieval Manuscripts (British Library)

Representations of Disabilities and Illnesses in Medieval Manuscripts

 

We recently received an enquiry asking if medieval manuscripts ever depict people with disabilities. At this time when the eyes of the world are upon the Rio Paralympics, we thought that it might be appropriate to devote a blogpost to medieval illustrations of disability and illnesses.

Medieval manuscripts are full of portrayals of disabilities. From allegorical figures to pilgrims seeking cures at saints’ shrines, to medical texts describing early surgeries for cleft palates, our manuscripts depict many forms of disability and many individual people with disabilities in images and words.

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Read more on the Medieval Manuscript Blog of the National Library