About the Course

The summer school consists of three courses/modules each of which requires an increasing level of knowledge of and experience in working with manuscripts. Each module is worth 5 ECTS credits, and is it therefore not possible to take more than one module each year. 

Mynd af handriti

2018 Summer School

1) Reading and Working with Manuscripts. A basic module, focusing on palaeography, codicology, manuscript description and transcription.

2) Theory and Practice of Scholarly Editing. An advanced module, focusing on editorial technique and the theory and practice of textual criticism; to qualify for the latter one must normally have successfully completed the former.

3) Preparing an Edition. A Master class for those who have completed the basic and advanced modules and want to try their hand at preparing an edition of a previously unedited text.


The workload amounts to a total of 140 hours, equalling 5 ECTS. This includes preparatory reading before the beginning of the summer school. A preparatory reading list will be accessible later on this website.

The schedules for the Basic and Advanced level will be accessible later on this website.

Upon successful completion of the summer school, participants will have obtained:

Knowledge and understanding of

  • Palaeography: different script types used in medieval and early modern Scandinavia (from Carolingian minuscule to Gothic types of scripts), their development, and their characteristic letter shapes
  • Abbreviations in written scripts, recognising them and expanding in a meaningful way

  • Codicology: describing a medieval codex, knowledge about the production of books in the Middle Ages and early modern times (the different stages and people involved)

  • Differences between West­Norse and East­Norse manuscripts and scripts

  • History of edition from traditional philology (Lachmann) via Bédier and Cerquiglini to New/Material philology

Skills in

  • Reading and transcribing texts in medieval scripts
  • Identifying different script types and giving a relative dating
  • Locating and identifying the numerous manuscript witnesses (copies) of a certain work

  • How to collate manuscripts for variants (variant apparatus)
  • How to make a stemma codicum

Competences in

  • Working with manuscripts in modern collections
  • Describing medieval manuscripts, their form and function
  • Theory and practice of scholarly editing

  • Technical realisation of edition work/project management
  • Preparing an edition of a previously unedited text



Students will be assessed throughout the courses, based on active student participation consisting of:

  • 80% attendance of the total number of instruction classes

  • active participation in the discussions, assignments and group work during classes

  • final oral presentation usually in groups (Module 3/Master class only).