A catalogue of Western manuscripts at the Bodleian Libraries and selected Oxford colleges

Merton College MS. 17

Former shelfmark: B. 2. 5



Language(s): Latin

fols. iii–iv blank. On fol. ivv is a table of contents, s. xiv in.

1. (fols. 1–14; 14v blank)
Indexes to AUGUSTINE, De Civitate Dei
Incipit: Abel quid interpretatur 15. 18. a. Infra Chain
Explicit: Luxuriosus magis debet ab animo libidinem expellere quam eius incentiua ore proferre
Final rubric: Explicit tabula super libros Augustini de ciuitate Dei

Several alphabetical series, distinguished in the margins and at the head of each col. by letters a, aa, aE, ai, ac—v, va, vE, vi, vo, vb.

2. (fols. 15–45; 45v-6v blank)
Anthology of and indexes to Ps.-JOHN CHRYSOSTOM, Opus Imperfectum in Mattheum
2.1. (fols. 15–17)
Incipit: Omelia i. Liber generacionis Ihesu Christi. Quomodo Ysaac Christum figurabat
Explicit: inuocacionum ubi fides
Final rubric: Explicit numerus et ordo omeliarum Crisostomi in imperfecto cum sentenciis notabilibus in eis contentis que sentencie ponuntur in tabula sequente
2.2. (fols. 17–33v)
Incipit: Aduersitas. Vtilitas aduersitatum temporali
Explicit: Xianus hic intrasti non habens &c. Explicit
2.3. (fols. 34–45)
Incipit: Abhominacio desolationis quadrupliciter exponitur
Explicit: Zelus separare nescit et ira non potest habere consilium .2. p.
Final rubric: Explicit tabula Iohannis Crisostomi de opere perfecto

1–2 as in MS 12 art. 6; 3 as in MS 38.

3. (fols. 47–150)
Martin of Troppau, Alphabetum in Decretum et Decretales
Rubric: Incipit prologus in Martinianam decreti et decretalium
Incipit: Inter alia que ad fidelium Christi doctrinam scripta sunt
Incipit: Aaron. Quod Aaron sacerdocium approbatur
Explicit: Zizannia
Final rubric: Explicit tabula Martiniani

Followed by an alphabetical list of the key-words in 4 cols, fols. 150–2. unpr.; Schulte 2. 137–8.

4. (fols. 152–3v; 154, 155–6v blank)
Nicholas de Anessy OP, Indexes to the Liber Sextus Decretalium
Incipit: Abbatissa si debeant benedici
Explicit: Vsura
Final rubric: Explicit tabula decretalium vi. libri edita a fratre Nicholao de Anessiaco de ordine predicatorum

unpr.; Schulte 2. 231. Quaestiones on fol. 154v, in faint pencil, s. xiv.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: hic non
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 162 leaves (iv + 158)
Dimensions (leaf): 350 × 220 mm.
Dimensions (written): 270 × 165 mm.
The edges retrimmed and spattered with red.


a bifolium at each end, 114, 2–312, 48, 5–1312; catchwords.


Ruled with crayon in 2 cols of 60 lines.


A single proficient English gothic rotunda bookhand with anglicana forms.


Red and blue flourished initials; blue initials flourished in red; red or blue initials and paraphs; underlining in red.


Standard Merton s. xvii, rebacked and repaired by Maltby; sewn on six bands; formerly chained from the usual position. fols. i-ii, 157–8 are modern blank paper binding leaves. fols. iii-iv and 155–6 are of thick, stiff parchment; iii and 156 were once pastedowns.


Origin: S. XIV in. ; England, Oxford (?)

Provenance and Acquisition

Probably made commercially at Oxford for its earliest named owner. On fol. ivv, s. xiv, ‘Liber quondam M. Ro’, and, in the same hand, ‘Liber quondam M. Roberti de Gillyngham in sacra pagina professoris et uicarii beati Petri in oriente Oxon’. Legatus domui aule de Mertone ad incathenandum in librario eiusdem domus.’ s. xv, ‘Istum librum de nouo ligari fecit Magister Ricardus Scardeburghe anno domini MCCCCLIII. Oretis igitur pro eo et pro parentibus eius’. Gillingham (BRUO 770) was admitted as vicar on the presentation of Merton College 13 May 1338, d. by Jan. 1346. Scarborough (BRUO 1651–2) was fellow c. 1449-at least 1464, d. by Oct. 1472. At the head of fol. 2 is the James no. ‘183’, s. xvii in. Inside the front board is a sheet of paper with table of contents, s. xvii, and the College bookplate. On the board itself is ‘N. 2. 5 Art:’, canc. and replaced with ‘B. 2. 5 (XVII)’ in red.

Record Sources

R. M. Thomson, A descriptive catalogue of the medieval manuscripts of Merton College, Oxford (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer), 2009.


For enquiries relating to this manuscript please contact Merton College Library.


    Coxe, p. 14; Powicke, no. 342; Römer 2. 301.

Funding of Cataloguing

Conversion of the printed catalogue to TEI funded by the Warden and Fellows of Merton College .

Last Substantive Revision

2018-08-01: First online publication

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