Many paper manuscripts at the BnF were bound into book form, often with a leather cover. Paratexts on the spine, the flyleaves, and binding marks on the manuscript folios can give us information about when and how the manuscript was acquired, as well as how it was handled.


BnF Sanscrit 1009. Rājavallabha

Gold, embossed lettering on the spine, CH. OCHOA. 1844, gives the name of the acquirer, Charles d’Ochoa, as well as the year of acquisition.  Black, inked lettering gives the title, RADJ VELLEBH.

BnF Sanscrit 1009, spine

BnF Sanscrit 1009, spine. Courtesy of the BnF.


BnF Sanscrit 759. Hāsyārṇavaprahasana

Instructions, in French, read piquer ici, indicating that the folio should be bound on that edge. In this case, the instructions were not followed.

BnF Sanscrit 759, folio 1 recto, top-left corner detail

BnF Sanscrit 759, 1r, top-left corner detail. Courtesy of the BnF.


BnF Sanscrit 947. Sāṃkhyaśāstra & Sāṃkhyatattvakaumudī

Instructions at the top on a note affixed to the first folio, in French, read Piquer ici, as well as Relier les 2 manuscrits ensemble, indicating that two manuscripts are to be bound together.

BnF Sanscrit 947, folio 1 recto

BnF Sanscrit 947, 1r. Courtesy of the BnF.


BnF Sanscrit 715. Mudrārākṣasa

Instructions on a note affixed to the first folio, in French. Reads Piquer ici at the top, and below, feuillets numérotés au verso, indicating to the binder that the folio numbering is on the back of each folio.

BnF Sanscrit 715, folio 1, recto

BnF Sanscrit 715, 1r. Courtesy of the BnF.

Search OpenEdition Search

You will be redirected to OpenEdition Search