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

Merton College MS. 224

Former shelfmark: N. 3. 7



Language(s): Latin

(fols. 1–367v)
AVICENNA, Canon Medicinae (transl. GERARD OF CREMONA)
Rubric: Incipit liber canonis primus quem princeps Abohali Auicenne de medicina edidit uerba Abohali Abuiseni.
Incipit: In primis Deo gratias agemus sicut sui ordinis celsitudo
Incipit: Dico quod medicamina est scientia qua humani corporis dispositiones noscuntur
Explicit: coluri duo sunt est ui. oboli. uni. sunt kerates xxiiii.
Final rubric: Completus est liber quintus libri canonis qui est antidotarium senis regis Alohali Hasen filii Hali Abuicenni et eius complemento completus est liber totus confectio trociscorum de cacabe de libro Aneti filii Ysac et sic completus est liber totus Abuicenni de medicali scientia.

Books are preceded by capitula and made to begin new quires. On fols. 119–20v the capitula to bk. 3 were added slightly later, and the decoration omitted. f. 267v (at the end of bk. 3) is blank. There are no capitula to bk. 5.

Pr. Strassburg, before 1473 &c. (GW 3114); eTK 0705F, 0424A.

(f. 367v)
Seven recipes
Incipit: Qui abscidunt sanguinem menstruorum et emorroydorum
eTK 1203K
(fols. 368–372v)

Two alphatical indexes in 3 cols.

(fols. 368–71v)
An alphabetical index
Incipit: Alfachi id est medicus
Explicit: Zegi id est atramentum.
eTK 0080A
(fols. 371v-2v)
An alphabetical index
Incipit: Aced genus absinthii colore subalbido
Explicit: Llem id est mercurialis.
eTK 0027D

The same tables follow the Canon in London, St Paul’s Cath. 3 (MMBL 1. 242).

Early marginal annotation in pencil.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: capitulum IX
Secundo Folio: (f. 3) ulla causa
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 380 leaves (iv + 376)
Dimensions (leaf): 360 × 250 mm.
Dimensions (written): 280 × 165 mm.
The edges retrimmed and spattered with red.


1–2212, 234(4 canc.), 24–512, 2614(14 canc.), 27–812, 2914(14 canc.), 30–112, 328(8 canc.); catchwords.


Ruled with pencil in 2 cols of 68 lines.


Several similar small French early gothic bookhands.


Red and blue flourished initials with long marginal extensions, in Parisian style; blue or red initials flourished in the other colour; running heads in capitals of the colours, mostly cropped; plain red or blue initials.


Standard Merton s. xvii, repaired and rebacked, sewn on six bands; formerly chained from the usual position. Fols. i-ii, 375–6 are modern paper blanks; fols. iii-iv, 373–4 are binding leaves of s. xvii, the outermost from the same printed book as in MS 68.


Origin: S. XIII ; France, Paris (?)

Provenance and Acquisition

Made in France, probably Parisian.

Given by William Reed in 1374 to Exeter College: UO34. 6. For Reed, fellow of Merton from 1344 until at least 1357, d. 1385, see MS 8.

‘7’ is inked on the foredge. Inside the front board is a sheet of paper with a title, s. xvii, and ‘P. 2. 7. Art:’, canc. and replaced with ‘No. CCXXIV’ and ‘N. 3. 7’ 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, pp. 87–8; Powicke, no. 363.

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2019-08-30: First online publication

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