A list of edibles pictured in Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta.


A list of plants for the kitchen shown in Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta.

The book is divided into two sections. The first section contains a large number of decorative writings meant to show the many ways that writing can be art. These were later decorated with detailed illustrations featuring flora and fauna of all sorts, most so well rendered that, if it is a real thing, it can be identified. It should be noted that the list below only contains the common name given in the facsimile. The facsimile version of the book itself also contains the Latin names, but more importantly, the manuscript has multiple examples of most of the fruits below. Thus, “Common apple” is applied to several very different looking apples, not one of which looks like a Red Delicious. “Kidney Bean” also appears to be used as a generic term to name several different sorts of kidney shaped beans, one of which looks like what Americans think of when they think of kidney beans. This is a late period book—by the time of this manuscript, New World foods were being grown as edibles in some parts of the continent, and as ornamental exotics in others.

The second part of the book features a constructed alphabet. Here, the focus is more on the symbolism of the illustrations rather than the taxonomic identification of the various plants and animals, so the plants listed therefrom are only listed if I am certain of what I am looking at or if it is specified in the text.

Lastly, I am not an authority on all edible plants. I have chosen things that I know to be edible. I have mostly left out plants that we would use as herbs or medicines.



From the first section:

almond
apple, common
apricot
artichoke
basil thyme
beans, broad
beans, kidney
beans, scarlet runner or seiva
blackberries
chard
cherry, sweet
chestnut, Spanish
cornelian cherry
currant, European
currant, red
fig, common
filbert, giant
filbert, European
garden pea
grape, wine
medlar
mulberries, black
mushroom, chanterelle
mushroom, unknown
orange, sour
peach
pear, common, gourd type
Pear, common, round type
pistachio
pomegranate
quince, common
tomato
walnut, English

From the second section:

bay laurel
cucumber
edible gourd
grapes
melon—cataloupe type
parsnip-type root vegetable
squash
turnip

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