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Dr. Timothy Bolton

Dr. Timothy Bolton joined Bloomsbury Auctions as Head of the Western Manuscripts and Miniatures department in February 2015.

Dr Bolton completed his doctorate at Cambridge, taught briefly at the University of Oslo, and then joined Sotheby’s, where he spent seven years as their expert in medieval manuscripts. He has catalogued and sold medieval manuscripts in Latin, almost every European vernacular language including Anglo-Saxon and Welsh, as well as an array of languages from the Christian Orient, such as Hebrew (setting world records for the sales of Torah Scrolls in 2007, 2008 and 2014), Greek, Armenian, Samaritan, Syriac and Coptic.

He holds the world auction records for sales in a number of categories, including that for a single miniature taken from a medieval manuscript (the fifteenth-century Kutnà Hora silver mining miniature in 2009, which made £612,000), for single fragments surviving from early medieval manuscripts (both the decorated bifolium from the so-called Sacramentary of St. Boniface, made in Northumbria in the early eighth century, which made £300,000 in 2007, and the bifolium from a copy of Aldhelm, De Laude Virginitatis, written c. 800, which sold in the Schøyen sale in 2012 for £340,000). Dr Bolton was also the expert in charge for many significant auctions held over the last decade, notably the sale of 60 leaves and fragments from the Schøyen collection, 2012, illustrating the history of palaeography from the first century BC. to the thirteenth century AD.; the illustrated mid-sixteenth-century war manual of Albrecht of Brandenburg, which made £290,000 in 2009; and the vast and monolithic fourteenth-century Rochefoucauld Grail manuscript with 107 miniatures depicting Arthurian scenes, which made £2.4 million in 2010. Other notable sales include the sumptuously illuminated mid-fifteenth century romance of Sir Gillion de Trazegnies from Chatsworth, which made £3.8 million in 2012.

Dr. Bolton is the author of a monograph on medieval history which appeared in 2009, the joint editor of another issued in 2014, and has published a number of scholarly articles on medieval manuscripts and related subjects. He has just completed another book on medieval history for Yale University Press, and is an honorary fellow of both Cardiff University, and Aberdeen University.

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