The Materiality of Devotion

From Manuscript to Print

An exhibition curated by Dr. Sarah Bogue, Kelin Michael, and Emma de Jong.

Devotion is a fully embodied activity that engages the senses as well as the heart and mind. The Materiality of Devotion: From Manuscript to Print provides visitors with the opportunity to explore a variety of objects, texts, and images that supported devotional practices in the medieval and early modern world. The exhibition invites visitors to consider both the form and the content of these sources, which include traditional theological and biblical material as well as musical scores, cityscapes, and poetry. Though these materials have been removed from their original contexts (manuscript leaves excised from full books and books removed from their sacred or secular settings), the exhibition offers a glimpse into the rich and endlessly multimodal world of premodern devotion.

The exhibition drew on Pitts Theology Library’s medieval manuscripts as well as its world-renowned early print collection, and also benefits from generous loans made by the Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library and the Michael C. Carlos Museum.

In conjunction with our Materiality of Devotion exhibition, Pitts Theology Library hosted a one day symposium based around the objects and themes of that exhibition on March 1, 2019. The event included seven speakers from Emory and the greater Atlanta community, representing the fields of conservation, art history, medieval and early modern history, and the history of all three Abrahamic religions.

See video of all eight lectures.

See the full list of speaker bios.

The symposium began with a keynote address by Dr. Lynley Herbert, Associate Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts at the Walters Art Museum. Dr. Herbert’s talk on Fragmentary Manuscripts examined all that goes into making a book, particularly the complexities inherent in dealing with dismantled books. How do art historians go about solving the puzzle of single leaves?

Thanks to generous funding from the Mellon Humanities PhD Intervention Program and the Laney Graduate School New Thinkers/New Leaders Program, there was no cost to attend this event!

See the full schedule and abstracts for this event.

Please contact Sarah Bogue ( with any questions or concerns about this event!