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

Merton College MS. 117

Former shelfmark: L. 3. 4



Language(s): Latin

(fols. 1–259v; fols 166v, 262rv blank)
ROBERT COWTON OFM, Commentary on the Sentences
Incipit: Sicut dicit beatus Ambrosius in prologo super epistolas Pauli in principio rerum
Explicit: nos in futuris experimentum discere faciat, qui ...

One of eight known copies.

unpr.; Stegmüller, Sent. 732; Sharpe, Handlist, pp. 531–2

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: quia tunc
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 268 leaves (ii + 264)
Dimensions (leaf): 380 × 260 mm.
Dimensions (written): 260 × 160 mm.
The edges retrimmed and spattered with red.


1–312, 410, 5–198, 2012, 21–298, 3012(12 canc.), a singleton; framed catchwords.


Frame-ruled with pencil in 2 cols; written in c. 64 lines.


Two excellent small anglicana hands, fols. 1–166; 167–261v.


Characteristic English professional work of s. xv: on fol. 1 a 15-line S in colours and gold on a square ground with foliage and a nearly-full border; on fols. 94v, 167 and 225 smaller versions of the same type with 3-sided borders; blue initials, large until fol. 42v, flourished in red; red and blue paraphs.


Standard Merton s. xvii, repaired and rebacked; sewn on seven bands; formerly chained from the usual position. Fols. i-ii, 263–4 are paper binding leaves, the outermost from a printed copy of Mercurius Gallobelgicus (Frankfurt, 1615). At the foot of fol. 262v are marks probably from the large brass chain-staple.


Origin: S. XV in ; England

Provenance and Acquisition

Made in England.

At the College certainly by 1556 (UO65. 365), but probably by s. xv ex.

At the head of fol. 1 is ‘D. 6, 15’, s. xvii, canc. On fol. iv is a title and ‘O. 1. 11. Art:’, s. xvii. Inside the front board is a sheet of paper with contents, s. xvii, and ‘O. 1. 11. Art:’ again, canc. and replaced with ‘L. 3. 4 (CXVII)’ in red; the College bookplate. ‘11’ is inked on the foredge.

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. 54; Powicke, no. 1245; Alexander & Temple, no. 399.

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2019-05-31: First online publication

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