The Bibliothèque de Genève's Ms. lat. 55 is an exceptional document because it consists of six wax tablets listing the expenditures for the royal household of the French King Philip IV the Fair for the years 1306-1309. Over time, the wax turned black and hard, which makes it harder to read. But the images of the tablets are accompanied by a transcription and by a facsimile prepared in 1720-1742 by the Genevan Gabriel Cramer. Preserved as „Ms. lat. 55 bis“, this handwritten facsimile makes it possible to access the content of the tablets and to compare the current state with that of 1720-1742 and thus to recognize the loss of pieces of the wax.
Online Since: 03/17/2016
Seven wooden tablets, bound together each between two later-added front and back paper guard leaves; the first tablet is filled only on the verso side with black-dyed wax, the following five are filled on both sides, the last is not filled. The format of the wooden tablets without the paper reinforcements is 14.8 x 8 cm. According to Wilhelm Wattenbach (in: Anzeiger für Kunde der deutschen Vorzeit 1873, p. 79f.), the tablets probably are “Bruchstücke des Taschenbuchs eines Klosterbeamten aus dem 15. Jahrh.” (pieces of the broken pocket book of a monastery official from the 15th century); several Latin and German words (partly upside-down) can be guessed.
Online Since: 10/08/2015