01 July 2009

Browse the “Codex Purpureus Rossanensis"

A touch-screen at the virtual museum of Rossano Calabro.


High tech equipment, notably high definition, has greatly contributed to the establishment of the “Virtual Museum of the Codex Purpureus Rossanensis” in the town of Rossano Calabro, Italy. This activity is part of a project called the ‘Byzantine Theme Park’ whose aim, among others, is to promote one of the most precious documents surviving from Late Antiquity.

The illuminated Greek ‘Codex Purpureus’ dating from around the 5th to 6th century CE, is striking for its excellent quality but also because of the peculiar red color of the parchment used, hence its name (purpureus means purple in Latin). A room in the museum is completely dedicated to the virtual reproduction of the Codex, which will be viewable through two interactive multimedia stations (one for individual visitors and one for tourist-group guides) which will allow the visitor to browse the virtual manuscript with the by selecting an audio channel with commentaries in several languages. This ‘flip-book’ system is particularly useful to study ancient and fragile documents that need to be preserved, which makes them hard to consult. In this case it also lets users magnify each of the 188 pages of the Codex and its splendid illuminated tables in the first section.

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