One of the main causes of the deterioration of Codex Purpureus Rossanensis can be surely considered the direct exposure in places specifically designed for its use, during the liturgical celebrations. Moreover, for about a century , it has been hosted in the Diocesan Museum of Holy art in Rossano. For its precarious conditions, it has been moved to the 'Istituto di Conservazione e Restauro del Patrimonio Archivistico e Librario in Rome (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnHOJYF5MTg )
The institute, managed by doctor Maria Cristina Misisti, aims at coordinating interdisciplinary researches about the codex from the historical, artistic, codifying, paleographic, biological, chemical, physical and technological point of view. The present researches testify to the invasive quality of the only restoration so far documented of the Codex, effected in 1919 by Nestore Leoni, who consolidated and stretched the parchment using hot jelly and making it irreversibly transparent . This treatment was applied only to the pages of the first booklet containing the illuminations , adopting a different procedure in the last pages of the Codex where, instead , there is a silken veil.
The planned scientific inquiries had both cognitive and diagnostic aims to verify the present damage , in order to clarify not only the features and the causes of the deterioration , but also to support the paleographic and iconographic researches. In this way useful checking was provided to the historical context of the many unanswered questions raised by the manuscript, from the letters, written in gold and silver , to the identification of the pigments used in the execution of the illuminated pages
Of course the campaign of scientific researches on such an old and valuable manuscript demanded the adoption of no invasive techniques , which , therefore do not require any sample of the object of study, but which can , nevertheless , define the materials adopted , supplying the map of the chemical elements .
Therefore some XFR measures (fluorescence of XRays) , FORS(reflecting spectroscopy using optical fibres ) and raman( Raman spectroscopy) measures have been taken by the chemistry and physics laboratories of ICRCPAL along with the researches of the laboratory of technology and biology on the features of the parchment and of the detectable biological species , concerning both the active degrade and the identification of the restoration materials adopted in the past .