In Byzantium, much of this work devoted to preserving Hellenistic thought in codex form was performed in scriptoriums by monks.  While monastic library scriptoriums flourished throughout the East and West, the rules governing them were generally the same.  Barren and sun-lit rooms (because candles were a source of fire) were major features of the scriptorium that was both a model of production and monastic piety.  Monks scribbled away for hours a day, interrupted only by meals and prayers.  With such production, medieval monasteries began to accumulate large libraries. These libraries were devoted solely to the education of the monks and were seen as essential to their spiritual development.  Although most of these texts that were produced were Christian in nature, many monastic leaders saw common virtues in the Greek classics. As a result, many of these Greek works were copied, and thus saved, in monastic scriptoriums. 
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