March 29th, 2009

get critical

Poem for Sunday

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It was a rainy, chilly, gray day, so after Daniel got back from volunteering at Hebrew school, we went to Baltimore's Mount Vernon Square, which was glorious with flowers despite the weather. The Walters Art Museum has two current exhibits that we wanted to see -- one on The Saint John's Bible and other illuminated manuscripts, another on The Romance of the Rose. The former in particular is stunning, not just the modern Bible, which is absolutely beautiful, but the collection of manuscripts with it -- several medieval Books of Hours, an illuminated Koran, a Kelmscott Chaucer, a hand-copied Old Testament with Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek and Latin juxtaposed. The Romance of the Rose exhibit isn't nearly as big and doesn't have an entire room devoted to the hands-on teaching of calligraphic arts (treating parchment, creating dyes, lettering, decorating), but it has many different manuscripts and a collection of commentaries.

As for the rest of the Walters Museum, we visited the Chamber of Wonders with its collections of maps, insects and other natural items from all over the world; walked through the 15th-16th century religious art, 17th century European and Flemish art, and 19th century landscape art and porcelain; did a quick pass through the Medieval World, which we had seen in depth the last time we were at the museum; and paid a visit to the room called the Treasury because we had learned that the museum has a Faberge egg on display there, and after having bought Faberpet eggs on Superpoke Pets, Adam wanted to see a real one. We had also discovered that Armand's Pizza has a dinner buffet, so we took the kids there -- it's never going to make my top 50 restaurants but at the same time, it's so much better than Cici's and has so much more variety that I am not going to say anything bad about it!

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