Illuminated almanac: 15th century iPad?

The Wellcome Library has acquired a rare medical almanac, a "combined calendar, astrological chart and medical textbook," that compacts into a small, folded strip, for UK£100,000 from the Edith Sitwell collection. The illuminated alamnac is believed to have been produced in an English workshop in the early 15th century. (photo)

Medieval specialist Elma Brenner does not believe the little book was comissioned by a doctor but by a layperson. "It would have been more convenient to commission a conventional codex, and probably no more expensive, but I think the owner must have been fascinated by the format as well as the contents. Maybe it was the must-have object of the day – I keep thinking of it as an iPad, an incredibly compact thing containing lots of interesting information," she said.