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

Merton College MS. 312

Former shelfmark: H. 3. 12



Language(s): Latin

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: 40. De prouincia
Secundo Folio: (f. 106) -tenti uasculo
Two originally separate volumes, probably only brought together with the present binding.
Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Extent: 135 leaves (ii + 133)
Dimensions (leaf): 255 × 190 mm.
The edges retrimmed and spattered with red.


1–412, 58, 6–912 / 10–118, 128(+ 1 before 1), a bifolium. The quires of part I have catchwords.


Standard Merton s. xvii, sewn on four bands; formerly chained from the usual position. Fols. i-ii and 132–3 are paper binding leaves, the outermost from the same printed book as in MS 68. At the foot of f. 130 (but not f. 131) is the mark of the large iron chain-staple. This leaf was formerly a pastedown, so the bifolium fols. 130–1 is probably bound inside-out.


Provenance and Acquisition

At the head of f. 1, cropped, ‘⟨Liber domus scolarium de Merton’ in⟩ Oxonia per ⟨dominum⟩ ⟨Ricar⟩dum Wykyng nuper uicarium ecclesie de Westwelle in Cancia iuxta Cantuariam (in a later hand qui fuit clericus M. Thome Bradwardyn Cantuariensis archiepiscopi)’. He also gave MS 244.

Both parts are in the 1556 List (UO65. 191, 205) and in James (nos 58, 198) as separate entities (‘58’ is at the head of f. 1).

Inside the front board is a sheet of paper, with ‘K. 4, 11’ (canc.) and a table of contents, s. xvii, and ‘Q. 3. 14. Art:’, canc. and replaced with ‘H. 3. 12 (CCCXII)’ in red. ‘14’ is inked on the foredge.

Merton College MS. 312 – Part I (fols. 1–104v)


Language(s): Latin

1. (fols. 1–56v)
MARCO POLO, Descriptio Orbis Terrarum (in the Latin version of PIPINUS OP)
Incipit: ⟨L⟩ibrum prudentis honorabilis ac fidelissimi domini Marci Pauli de Venetiis de condicionibus orientalium regionum ...
Incipit: (capitula fols. 1v-2)
Incipit: (f. 2) ⟨T⟩empore quo Balduinius sceptra Constantinopol’ inperii gubernabat
Explicit: prouincias et regiones deferuntur.
Final rubric: Explicit liber domini Marci Pauli de Veneciis de condicionibus et consuetudinibus orientalium regionum.

Pr. Gouda 1483/85, Basel 1532; Kaeppeli 1114.

2. (fols. 57–104v)
HETHOUM, Flos Historiarum Terrae Orientalis
Rubric: Iste liber intitulatur flos ystoriarum terre orientis quem compilauit frater Haytonus dominus Churchi consanguineus regis Armenie ex mandato summi pontificis sanctissimi domini nostri Clementis pape quinti anno incarnacionis dominice millesimo CCC. VII in ciuitate Pictauensis regis Francie R. ⟨D⟩iuiditur autem liber iste in quattuor partes
Incipit: (capitula)
Incipit: ⟨R⟩egnum Cathay est maius regum quod in orbe sit
Explicit: illam repleat et conseruet qui potens est Deus in s. s. amen.
Final rubric: Explicit liber ystoriarum partium orientis quem ego Nicholaus Falconi scripsi primo in Gallico ydiomate secundum quod uir religiosus frater Haytonus ordinis Premonstratensium dominus Churchi consanguineus domini regis Armenie ore suo absque nota siue aliquo exemplari de uerbo ad uerbum dictauit et de gallico transtuli in latinum anno Domini millesimo CCCC. VII. mense Augusti in ciuitate Pictauensis tempore sanctissimi patris domini Clementis pape Quinti.

Ed. C. Kohler et al., Receuil des historiens des croisades: Documents arméniens II (Paris, 1906), pp. 261–363; this copy mentioned p. cxv, but not collated.

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Dimensions (written): 200 × 130 mm.


Ruled with pencil in 2 cols of 37 lines.


A single cursiva formata, French or Italian.


Unfilled spaces for coloured initials and rubrics.


Origin: S. XIV in. ; script of French or Italian appearance.

Merton College MS. 312 – Part II (fols. 105–131v)


Language(s): Latin

3. (fols. 105–29v)
PALLADIUS, De Agricultura
Incipit: (Beg. impf. in March) possit cicius nasci
Explicit: ille augetur iste decrescit ...
Final rubric: Palladii Rutili Emiliani uiri illustris opus agriculture explicit.

Ed. R. H. Rodgers (Leipzig, 1975).

On f. 130 is a note, in a rough hand s. xii ex., on the succession of the English kings, William I to Henry II (‘qui leo iusticie ... apellatus est’) and his four sons. Fols. 130v-1v blank.

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: Parchment
Dimensions (written): 210 × 120 mm.


Ruled with pencil in 40 long lines.


A single English early gothic bookhand.


Red or green initials, plain or flourished in the other colour.


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

Additional Information

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.

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2019-11-05: First online publication

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