Find images of manuscript illuminations on Gallica by filtering out pages without illuminations. NOTE: It is temporarily not possible to add new manuscripts to this collection. To view a sample of previously enrolled manuscripts, see the links below.

How it works and why it doesn't

So far, the Gallica Illumination Filter works only on color images. The Filter scans the color statistics of all the thumbnails of the designated manuscript and compares the average color of each image. The Filter simply selects the images with the darkest colors. This is why the book covers usually show up in the results. As a result, some pages with light-colored miniatures get filtered out and some false positives appear. Try the "Filter More" and the "Filter Less" buttons to get the best mix. The Filter is designed for the casual browser of manuscripts. Anyone doing serious scholarship on the illuminations should consult the entire document.

The Gallica Illumination Filter is the private project of Jesse Hurlbut. I am not formally associated with Gallica or the Bibliothèque Nationale de France. This on-line software tool is a Beta release and may not always perform as desired.


Visit the Gallica site (click the logo above to visit) and perform a keyword search for a manuscript. After selecting a color reproduction that you would like to filter, visit any page of that manuscript and select the URL of that page and paste it in the box below to begin filtering. The initial scan of a manuscript takes some time, but the image statistics are kept in a database so that any subsequent visit to the same manuscript will be much faster.

Jesse Hurlbut's Gallica Illumination Filter

Choose a manuscript:

Bibliothèque de l'Arsenal

Bibliothèque Nationale de France - Français

Bibliothèque Nationale de France - Latin

Bibliothèque Nationale de France - Other collections