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

Merton College MS. 279

Former shelfmark: O. 1. 11



Language(s): Latin

f. i blank. On f. ii are pen-trials and a title, s. xvii; the verso is blank.

(fols. iii-ivv)
List of the quaestiones

Arranged in 2 cols, written in an anglicana hand of s. xiv ex.

f. vrv is blank but for a pen-trial of s. xv on the verso, ‘quod [?Arenauetus]’.

(fols. 1–178v)
JOHN DUMBLETON, Summa Logicae et Naturalis Philosophiae
Incipit: Incipiendum est a primis cum minimus error in principio in fine maximi est causa
Explicit: (ends impf. in viii. 4, catchwords) agente igitur qualibet terra

Unpr.; extracts ed. E. D. Sylla, The Oxford Calculators and the Mathematics of Motion, 1320–1350 (New York, NY, 1991), pp. 565–625; M. Clagett, The Science of Mechanics in the Middle Ages (Madison, WI, 1959), pp. 317–25; Lohr, pp. 188–9; Stegmüller, Sent. 420, 1; eTK 1055K, ; P. V. Spade, The Medieval Liar; A Catalogue of the Insolubilia-Literature (Toronto, 1975), pp. 63–5; Sharpe, Handlist, p. 239. Here without the prologue.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: reducunt ad
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 184 leaves (v + 179)
Dimensions (leaf): 300 × 185 mm.
Dimensions (written): 240 × 155 mm.


A singleton, A4, 16(26, 38 inserted after 3), 4–512, 614, 7–1612; catchwords and pencilled leaf-numbers or -letters.


Frame-ruled with pencil in 2 cols; written in c. 40 lines.


A single anglicana hand, the ink sometimes very pale.


Blue initials flourished in red; red or blue paraphs; running heads in red and blue capitals.


Standard Merton s. xvii; sewn on five bands; formerly chained from the usual position. f. i, little more than a stub, was formerly a pastedown in an earlier binding sewn on four bands. At the head of f. ii is the mark of an iron chain-staple. Fols. 178–9 are paper binding leaves, from a copy of the same printed book as in MS 272.


Origin: S. XIV ex. ; script of English appearance.

Provenance and Acquisition

Given to the College by William Reed in 1374: UO49. 24, citing the secundo folio numquam luminosum, which occurs in the table on f. iv. On the mutilated f. iv are the remains of Reed’s usual descriptions and tables of contents: ‘ Oretis igitur pro utroque’; ‘ naturalibus et continent .9. partes’; ‘ de libraria’; ‘ eiusdem et ad usum | o uenerabilis patris domini | ⟨exec⟩utoribus eiusdem ac | ’. The last is the remains of William Reed’s ex dono, in the hand of his clerk Walter Roberti. For Reed, fellow from 1344 until at least 1357, d. 1385, see MS 8.

Inside the front board is a sheet of paper with a title, s. xvii, ‘Q. 1. 11. Art:’, s. xvii, canc. and replaced with ‘O. 1. 11 (CCLXXIX)’, in red; the College bookplate. On fols. ii and 1 is the James no. ‘97’, s. xvii in.

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. 110; Powicke, no. 568.

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2019-10-14: First online publication

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