The Saint John's Bible June 2010: Vol. 2, Issue 6Forward to a Friend

This month, Tim Ternes, Director of The Saint John's Bible, provides insight into the full-page illumination from Historical Books called Joshua Anthology. This illumination, created by Donald Jackson, has been selected to be the cover image on the trade volume that will be available in September. (Have you ordered your copy yet?) While you wait for your copy to arrive, if you find yourself in the Saint John’s area this summer, be sure to visit, take a tour of HMML, walk to Stella Maris Chapel, and pick up a loaf of Johnnie bread.


Joshua Anthology

Joshua Anthology, Donald Jackson, 2010 The Saint John’s Bible, Order of Saint Benedict, Collegeville, Minnesota.  Used by permission.  All rights reserved.

As Moses reaches the end of his life, the Lord commissions Joshua, Son of Nun, to be Moses' successor and to lead the next generation of Israelites on a journey into the Promised Land. The Book of Joshua chronicles the battles, deaths and mayhem of violence of that journey from the slavery of Egypt.

   Bull and Scarab Beetle

The Joshua Anthology, the first major illumination in Historical Books from The Saint John’s Bible, focuses on the crossing of the Children of Israel into the Promised Land. In this illumination, which was originally designed by Donald Jackson almost three years ago, Donald sets up a number of visual design elements which renew throughout the work and tie the threads of the volume together. The heading for the book of Joshua is framed by an Egyptian border motif taken from a wall painting in the Valley of the Queens. This same design is seen cropping into the borders of the anthology page, and the addition of a bronze bull and scarab beetle continue the Egyptian references. The Children of Israel, after having fought their way to the Promised Land following so many years in bondage are still seduced by the pull of the imagery, false idols and magical rituals of their Egyptian masters.

    Headless Bodies in the Nile
Death, violence and conflagration are present in the flames and the headless bodies floating down the river; the price of slaughter is paid by both sides of a conflict. Despite this destruction, there is still hope; strong and stable arches rise in the center symbolizing the Ark of the Covenant carried across the river and throughout the land. The Laws of Moses, in the form of fragments from Thomas Ingmire’s illumination of the Ten Commandments, are jostled across the Jordan, through the ruined city, between the hills and into the Promised Land. Slender batons of gold, active and present throughout the illumination, carry out the theme of God’s constant presence reminding all to "Put away the gods that your ancestors served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord." (Joshua 24:14)

    Commandment fragments and arches

Update on the Heritage Edition
by Craig Bruner

Production of the Heritage Edition continues amid feedback from international experts that the seven volume set of The Saint Johns Bible is the most artistically beautiful reproduction of a manuscript ever created. In late June 2010, subscribers will receive Pentateuch, their fourth volume of the seven volume set. The delivery of Psalms to subscribers has just finished and production is well underway for the fifth volume, Historical Books.

Because it is the largest of the seven volumes, printing Historical Books will be similar to printing both Wisdom Books and Pentateuch at the same time. Imaging of the original folios of Historical Books was complete in mid-May, and the initial rounds of color correcting for the Giclèe prints and the trade edition are complete. The first sections of the volume to be printed will be the script pages and the extensive margin treatments. Fifty folios will be printed in late July and will receive their gold and silver treatments in the ensuing three months. The final pages of the volume are heavily covered with illumination and will be printed when Donald is finished with Letters & Revelation, the final volume of The Saint John's Bible.

In This Issue

• Joshua Anthology

• Update on the Heritage Edition

• Upcoming Exhibitions & Events

See the Bible


Science Museum of Minnesota
St. Paul, MN
March 12 - October 24, 2010

Print Exhibitions

Benedict Inn Retreat & Conference Center
Beech Grove, IN
August 5 - 29, 2010

Saint Charles Senior Living Community
Carthagena, OH
August 22 - September 10, 2010

Find a gallery near you >

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Contact:The Saint John's Bible, Liturgical Press, Saint John's Abbey, PO Box 7500, Collegeville, MN 56321
Phone: 1.800.654.0476 or 320.363.2213

© Copyright 2010, Order of Saint Benedict, Liturgical Press, Collegeville, MN. All rights reserved.