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

Merton College MS. 156

Former shelfmark: L. 3. 8

WILLIAM OF NOTTINGHAM; S. XIV ex. (before 1387)


Language(s): Latin

fols. i, ii blank; on iiv is title in a contemporary hand.

(fols. 1–400v)
Incipit: Da michi intellectum ...; Dionisius de diuinis nominibus capitulo tercio dicit quod ante omne et maxime theologiam ab oratione incipere est
Explicit: (ends impf. in Joh. 21: 8) quod Petrus per mare uenit ad Christum (catchwords signantur quidem iusti)||

On fol. 401 is a title, s. xvii; 401v blank.

unpr.; Stegmüller, Bibl. 3002; Sharpe, Handlist, p. 796.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: est quam rerum
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 402 leaves (i + 401)
Dimensions (leaf): 375 × 270 mm.
Dimensions (written): 300 × 180 mm.
The edges retrimmed and spattered with red.


A bifolium, 14, 2–3412; a singleton; framed catchwords. A quire is missing from the end.


Ruled with pencil in 2 cols of 60 lines.


Written by a single scribe in anglicana formata. The lemmata are mostly written as the commentary, but sometimes larger, and sometimes in much larger textura. Running heads between specially ruled lines.


On fol. 1 an 8-line D in colours and gold with coiling foliage and full border; slightly cropped by the binder and further mutilated with the excision of the top outer corner; red and blue initials, flourished and with partial borders in the colours; blue initials flourished in red; red or blue paraphs, red underlining.


Standard Merton s. xvii; sewn on five bands (formerly on eight); formerly chained from the usual position. Fols. i and 401 were once pastedowns. On fol. i, at the middle of the foot, is the mark of a small iron chain-staple; near the foot of fol. 401v is the mark of the large iron chain-staple.


Origin: S. XIV ex. (before 1387) ; England

Provenance and Acquisition

Made in England. On fol. iiv is ‘Liber domus de Mertone in Oxonia in communi libraria eiusdem et ad usum communem sociorum studencium cathenandus. / ex legato uenerabilis uiri magistri Iohannis Bloxham quondam custodis eiusdem domus Oretis igitur pro eodem ac fidelibus animabus a purgatorio.’ Bloxham (BRUO 204) was fellow by 1361–2, warden from 1375 until his death in 1387.

On fol. iv ‘Istum librum fecit de nouo ligari M. Iohannes Burbage sacre theologie professor.’ For Burbage, fellow 1411–35, see MS 3.

Inside the front board is a sheet of paper with title and ‘F. 5, 1’ (canc.), s. xvii, and ‘O. 5. 7. Art:’, canc. and replaced with ‘L. 3. 8 (CLVI)’ in red; the College bookplate.

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. 65; Powicke, no. 571; B. Smalley, ‘Which William of Nottingham?’, in her Studies in Medieval Thought and Learning (London, 1981), pp. 248–87, esp. 267–8; Alexander & Temple, no. 343.

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2019-06-21: First online publication

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