Manuscripts treated as fossils

From the BBC News:

_40862683_manuscript_1_science300A palaeontologist has come up with a novel way of studying historical manuscripts, by treating them as fossils from an extinct species.

John Cisne, writing in Science magazine, says manuscripts from the Middle Ages have a lot in common with animal populations.

For this reason, he claims, he can work out how many copies of a manuscript once existed and how regularly they were destroyed, simply by applying a biological model.

Historians have cautiously welcomed this rare link between the arts and sciences.

More here.

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