The Dark Legend of the Devil’s Bible
The National Library of Sweden holds a mysterious religious piece of text which is believed to have been written by the Devil himself! The Codex Gigas is the largest surviving medieval transcript in the world. It contains Christian writings and a complete version of the Vulgate Bible, which was later established as the Catholic Church’s official Latin translation.
But, the most fascinating aspect of the book is a full-page color depiction of the Devil, which gave the Codex Gigas its name – The Devil’s Bible.
According to experts, the Devil’s Bible is a text that originates from a Benedictine monastery in Podlažice, Czech Republic from the 13th century. It is 36 inches tall and 20 inches wide while being nearly 9 inches thick. The book is bound in leather with metal trim and vellum pages. The tale talks about a young monk from the Middle Ages who broke his monastic vows and was sentenced to death by being walled up alive. In order to avoid the bizarre punishment, the monk promised to write a book that will glorify the monastery and hold all human knowledge overnight. The monastic order agreed to this, but as midnight approached, the monk knew that he was doomed. So he prayed and asked for help, but instead of God, it was Lucifer that heard his prayers. The dark prince gave the monk his book in exchange for his soul, and the monk added the full page portrait of the Devil as personal gratitude.
Analysis of the text suggests that it was written by one scribe indeed. Historians point to a signature within the text “Hermann inclusis” (Herman the Recluse), as evidence to the book’s sole author. Tests have been done to see how much time it would take to complete the book, and have revealed that it would take 5 years of nonstop writing to create it, which is impossible. However, if the book was created in just one night as it suggests, it was either created by God or the Devil.