The Ambrosian Virgil of Francesco Petrarca

The Ambrosian Virgil of Francesco Petrarca Facsimile Edition

Italy — Ca. 1300–1325

A splendid manuscript with the most important works by Virgil from Petrarch’s personal library, which was stolen shortly after it was made and recovered by him in 1338

  1. This is the most famous manuscript from the enormous private library of Petrarch (1304–74)

  2. Created in Avignon ca. 1300–25, it also contains works by Publius Papinius Statius and Horace

  3. Simone Martini (ca. 1284–1344) added a famous allegorical frontispiece to the work ca. 1340

The Ambrosian Virgil of Francesco Petrarca

  1. Description
  2. Facsimile Editions (1)
The Ambrosian Virgil of Francesco Petrarca

Aside from being a prolific author, Petrarch was also a bibliophile who amassed one of the finest private libraries of his day, which included many works from classical antiquity. The most famous manuscript in his library was the so-called Ambrosian Virgil, which contains the most important works by the famous Roman author as well as works by Publius Papinius Statius, Horace, and various grammatical works. Petrarch commissioned the work for his own use, and it was made in Avignon ca. 1300–25. However, the manuscript was soon stolen and Petrarch could not recover it until 1338. The manuscript is also famous for its allegorical frontispiece representing the Aeneid, Georgics, and Eclogues, which was created by his friend Simone Martini ca. 1340.


Alternative Titles
Petrarca: Vergilianus-Codex
Francisci Petrarcae Vergilianus Codex
Virgilio ambrosiano
Size / Format
538 pages / 41.0 × 26.5 cm
Ca. 1300–1325
Vergil's Bucolics, Georgics and Aeneid; Servius' exegesis; Statius' Achilleid including accessus and commentary; 4 odes by Horace (II 3, II 10, II 16, and IV 7) with the commentary of Pseudo-Acron and some medieval glosses; two exegeses of the third book
Artist / School
Previous Owners
Francesco da Carrara
Visconti Library at Pavia
Cardinal Federico Borromeo

Available facsimile editions:
Facsimile Editions

#1 Francisci Petrarcae Vergilianvs codex

Hoepli – Milan, 1930

Publisher: Hoepli – Milan, 1930
Commentary: 1 volume by Achille Ratti and Giovanni Galbiati
Language: Italian
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
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