Founded in 612 by St. Columbanus, Bobbio, which is northeast of Genoa, was
an important intellectual center of the Carolingian Empire. In 628, Pope
Honorius I exempted the abbey from bishops' rule and placed it directly
under papal jurisdiction. In 643 the monastery adopted the rule of St.
Benedict, which it practiced along with the original Irish rule. During
the X Century, Bobbio's library expanded under the patronage of German
kings to include 700 manuscripts, among which are the
Bangor and the Bobbio Missal,
both sources of information about Celtic
liturgical practices. In 1014, Bobbio became an episcopal see and began to
decline as conflict between the bishops and monks rose. In the XVI
Century, the library was transferred to the Vatican, and the collection
has since been divided among several libraries. A fire in 1904 destroyed a
number of manuscripts. In 1803, the invading French suppressed the
monastery, which was restored in 1910.
Karen Rae Keck
Return to St Pachomius Library.