About Lisa Fagin Davis

Lisa Fagin Davis received her PhD in Medieval Studies from Yale University in 1993. She has catalogued medieval manuscript collections at Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, the Walters Art Museum, Wellesley College, the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the Boston Public Library, and several private collections. Her publications include: the Catalogue of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University, Vol. IV (with R. G. Babcock and P. Rusche, Tempe, 2004); The Gottschalk Antiphonary (Cambridge University Press, 2000); numerous articles in the fields of manuscript studies and codicology; and the monograph, La Chronique Anonyme Universelle: Reading and Writing History in fifteenth-century France (a translation, critical edition and detailed study of a fifteenth-century French world chronicle) (Brepols Publishers, 2015). With Melissa Conway, Davis is co-author of the Directory of Pre-1600 Manuscripts in the United States and Canada, published online by the Bibliographical Society of America. As a professor of manuscript studies, she has taught at the California Rare Book School and at the Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science. In 2016, she co-curated the major exhibition “Beyond Words: Illuminated Manuscripts in Boston Collections” at the Houghton Library at Harvard University, the McMullen Museum of Art at Boston College, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.


Dr. Davis is currently serving as Executive Director of the Medieval Academy of America. Follow her on Twitter @LisaFDavis.

6 responses to “About Lisa Fagin Davis

  1. Rita Southworth Moerschel

    I was fascinated to read the Globe article about you and to see your background. My father was an engrosser so I’ve seen a lot of illumination/calligraphy done by him, examples in libraries and museums and I own books about it. He was given a manuscript page from his mentor that now hangs in my living room. If you are interested in seeing it, I live in Newton, Ma., an easy commute for you.

    Rita Southworth Moerschel

  2. Ms. Davis, I would love to speak with you about a folio of a Mass, probably 15th c., the pages of which my father – a collector from Newton – distributed to many family and friends. Several pages have been given to the M.I.T. Music Department and Library, and I have been working to try to locate many others. Perhaps, through your extensive research and catalogueing, it might be possible to at least know where other pages might be. I live in Newton, and it would be easy to communicate about them. I still have the title page and several others.

    Constance Glaser Kantar

  3. Dr. Davis – about your latest ‘Voynich manuscript’ post – if it happens that you are the ‘Lisa’ who has been communicating at the forum, I’d be happy to help save you some time and effort with the ‘portolan’ avenue if you’d care to contact me. My own work on that subject (which I believe had not been previously considered) occupied a full chapter (35 pages) yet unpublished.

  4. Pingback: The Voynich manuscript still has not been decoded | Historical bites

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