Monday, November 18, 2013

Exhibiting Freer's Bibles

Where: Freer Gallery of Art

When: through February 16, 2014

The Peacock Room has a temporary addition - two Bibles that Freer acquired in Egypt.  These are from the 5th and 6th centuries, so as you might expect, they're not in the best of shape.  The picture above is from the cover of one of the Bibles, which is probably the most interesting of the three objects on display.  The color is still pretty good, and you can imagine that these wooden plates would have given the manuscript a certain heft.

The shutters were closed when I went to see these antiques, and it made me realize that it's well worth it to visit the Peacock Room when the shutters are open.  The light sensitive nature of these manuscripts means that they won't be opening the shutters until next February, so you'll have to endure the darkness (and the room is really dark without some natural light).  It also felt smaller to me than it had on my last visit.  Not sure if that's also due to the shutters, or to faulty memory...

Verdict: Always worth while to see anything as old as these, plus you can easily add on another Freer exhibit in a lunch hour.

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