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

Merton College MS. 183

Former shelfmark: O. 3. 6



Language(s): Latin

On the front pastedown, in a large clumsy hand, perhaps s. xiii, is ‘epistole longobardi glosate’. fol. irv is blank.

(fols. 1–209; 209v-10 blank)
PETER LOMBARD, Commentarium in Epistolas Pauli (‘Magna Glossa’)
Incipit: Principia rerum requirenda sunt
Explicit: et alia Dei munera sit cum omnibus uobis amen.

PL 191. 1297–1696; 192. 10–520; Stegmüller, Bibl. 6654–68.

On fols. 210v and the rear pastedown are a few pen-trials in a small note-hand of s. xii in., probably French.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: Paulus seruus
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 212 leaves (i + 210, incl. 25A)
Dimensions (leaf): 360 × 260 mm.
Dimensions (written): 230 × 175 mm.


A singleton at each end, 1–258, 2610; the quires numbered at each end; occasional catchwords. A quire is missing after 10.


Ruled with plummet in 3 cols for 48 lines of gloss, the text, in larger script on alternate lines, in the centre. The width of this col., always narrow, varies in such a way that the width of col. 1 nonetheless always equals that of 3. The gloss is flanked by narrow columns to accommodate the auctoritates.


Text and gloss in a single expert early gothic French bookhand.


Handsome large decorated initials in Parisian style, in colours and gold, open each book: fol. 1, text and gloss on fols. 2, 53, 83, 104, 122v, 135v, 144v, 152, 158, 161v, 171, 176v, 179v, 180v. Otherwise plain red or blue initials; red marginal guides and running heads, lemmata in the gloss underlined in red.


Contemporary: tawed skin on flush, chamfered oak boards, an overcover of tawed skin. Sewn on four bands, slightly raised on the spine; blue and white endbands. Two cloth ties, s. xvii, replace straps from the front board to catches on the rear.


Origin: c. 1200 ; script of French appearance.

Provenance and Acquisition

On the front pastedown is an erased two-line inscription, s. xiv: ‘Liber ex procuracione ?magistri Ph⟨ilippi⟩ de Shea’.

At the College by c. 1500. On the rear board, near the foot, are the marks of the large iron chain-staple, superseded by a brass one, the first under, the second over the overcover. On the overcover at the rear is inked ‘K 20’ or ‘R 20’, and a much-rubbed title, of indeterminate date, but perhaps s. xiv. Near the foot of the foredge of the front board, on the overcover, is the mark of the usual brass chain-staple. On the front pastedown are ‘Petri Lombardi Collectanea in Epistolas Pauli’, ‘F. 15. 5’, and ‘O. 7. 11. Art:’, all s. xvii, the third canc. and replaced with ‘No. CLXXXIII’ and ‘O. 3. 6’, in red ink; the College bookplate. On the foredge is inked ‘22’, apparently corr. to ‘11’.

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. 73; Powicke, no. 1213; Alexander & Temple, no. 138, pl. VII.

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2019-07-15: First online publication

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