A manuscript book, its text handwritten on a number of separate pages. A codex cannot be mechanically printed nor can it be written on a rolled scroll. The plural form is codices. The earliest known ones date from the fourth century CE. In Mesoamerican art, a painted and inscribed book on long sheets of fig-bark paper or deer skin coated with plaster and folded into accordion-like pleats.Examples: Mixtec (southern Mexico), Codex Zouche-Nuttall, 1200-1521, deer skin, 47 leaves, British Museum, London. This is one of only four known Mexican codices to survive the Spanish invasion of 1518-21.