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

Exeter College MS. 65

Hugo de S. Caro, In Epistolas S. Pauli ad Romanos et ad Corinthios; Anon., In Epistolam S. Pauli ad Corinthios 2; Oxford, England, 1460


Summary of Contents: Exeter College MSS 51–68, most of the texts in which are by or attributed to Hugo de Sancto Caro, were produced in Oxford for Roger Keys, d. 1477, whose many positions included the visitorship of Exeter College (1442), the wardenship of All Souls College (1443–5), the archdeaconry of Barnstaple (1450), and the precentorship of Exeter Cathedral (1459) (see BRUO, ‘Keyes’). His arms are found in the borders of several of the manuscripts (although others have been excised) and several manuscripts include a long ex dono inscription (see MS 53) recording his gift of the books to the rector and fellows of Exeter College on 1 January 1469/70. On Hugo de Sancto Caro see E. Mangenot, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, vii (Paris, 1921), 221–308. For two other great series of illuminated volumes produced in Oxford contemporaneously with these, then and now at Balliol College and Merton College, see K. L. Scott, ‘Two series of dated illuminated manuscripts made in Oxford 1450–64’, Watson Essays, 43–69. So far as is known from the incomplete series of dated colophons and the ex dono inscription, the manuscripts were written between 1452 and the late 1460s, but it is probable that they were delivered to the College singly or in twos or threes; a 1458 entry in the Rector’s Accounts records payments to John Godysson, stationer, for providing chains for three volumes of the set (Boase1, 21, Boase2, 40). Another series of entries in the Rector’s Accounts reveals, however, that MS 68 and another, probably MS 60, were not completed until after Keys’s death, between 1480 and 1484, perhaps for lack of money until that was supplied by M. John Combe (see Watson, Exeter, p. 85, and MS 68, History). In the whole series three principal scribes took part, assisted by several others in the last volume, MS 68. Four artists shared the illumination of the borders (and some of them also the spray decoration and small initials). For detailed analysis, see Watson, Exeter, pp. 85–87.

Language(s): Latin

1. (fols. 1r-113v)
Hugo de S. Caro, Comm. Rom.
Incipit: Beniamin lupus rapax mane comedet predam ... vt habeamus exposicionem huius libri. Preponitur autem huic libro prologus ex verbis Augustini. Jeronimi. Origenis. Haymonis. Ambrosij collectus

[fol. 3v]

Explicit: ab obseruancia legalium.
Rubric: Ad Romanos.
Incipit: [in margin Capitulum primum]. Paulus etc. littera dependet vsque ibi. Omnibus etc.
Explicit: Intellige deus in quantum deus etc.
Final rubric: Explicit Epistola beati Pauli apostoli ad Romanos.

Stegmüller, Bibl., 3727.

2. (fols. 113v-195r)
Hugo de S. Caro, Comm. 1 Cor.
Rubric: Incipit epistola eiusdem ad Corinthios prima

[fol. 114r]

Incipit: Paulus vocatus apostolus. Precedentem epistolam scripsit apostolus ad potentes et superbos scilicet Romanos
Explicit: quod non faciunt infideles et heretici.
Final rubric: Explicit Epistola Pauli ad corinthios prima.

Stegmüller, Bibl., 3728.

3. (fols. 195r-253r)
Rubric: Incipit epistola eiusdem ad Corinthios secunda.
Incipit: Paulus apostolus Iesu christi etc. id est Cor. xijda. Sicut in vno corpore multa membra habemus omnia autem membra non eundem actum habent
Incipit: [fol. 201r Expositio glosse ch. 2. i] Statui autem. Dixit supra primo se non venisse ad eos parcens eis
Incipit: [fol. 233r, Expositio glosse ch. 10. i] Gratias ago deo super eius dono ... [ch. 10. i] ... de caritate quam suis donat que non potest enarrari
Explicit: sit semper. Ad hoc venit uel sit. Jo. xiiii. mansionem faciemus. Ysa. xlv. Non in uacuum[sic] creauit eam, sed ut habitetur formauit eam.
Final rubric: Explicit notabile opus famosi doctoris Hugonis de Vienna super Epistolam Pauli ad Romanos et super primam et sucundam ad Corinthios. Scriptum per me Willelmum Solomon’ Oxon. finitur que in crastino sancti Dionisij [10 Oct.] anno domini millesimo CCCCº. sexagesimo et anno regni regis Henrici Sexti post Conquestum Anglie tricesimo nono. Deo gracias.

An unidentified commentary on 2 Corinthians. Not found in Stegmüller, from whose index of incipits our incipit is lacking.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: ad intelligend’.
Form: codex
Support: parchment FHHF
Extent: 253 rather matt leaves preceded by one 18th-century paper flyleaf and one medieval membrane flyleaf, and followed by one 18th-century paper flyleaf
Dimensions (leaf): 410 × 285 mm.
Dimensions (column): 280 × 80 mm.


1–318 324 (4 + 1). Catchwords by scribe, centred. No quire letters or numbers.


Two columns, 60 lines. Ruled in crayon.


Written by Scribe 1 (William Salomon); see MS 58, Script. In this volume Salomon uses elaborate cadells, some with faces and/or touched with red.


Of the same type as MS 51 and by the same artist, Artist B, for a characterization of whose work see headnote to MSS 51–68.

Major decoration, illuminated borders, is on fols. 1r, 114r, 195r.

There are illuminated initials with sprays at beginnings of chapters. There is only one rubric, and red and blue paraphs, and there are no blue running titles or chapter numbers as in most volumes in this series.


Stamped leather bindings over square-edged wooden boards, (presumably) rebound; stamp used was employed in Oxford between 1535 and 1621, here in the second phase state, probably c. 1605–10. Two straps held by nails. Refurbished in the 19th century (1839?): that volumes were resewn is indicated by the very tight binding, which makes collation difficult, and by the provision of new endbands; edges were stained red; book was reinforced by pasting long strips of canvas round the spine and attached to the boards, and the old spines were replaced. Sewn on eight bands. Boards have square edges. For other details see Watson, Exeter, p. 87.


Origin: 1460 ; Oxford, England

Provenance and Acquisition

On the verso of fol. ii, a medieval half-sheet, is ‘Hunc librum Hugonem de Vienna super Epistolam Pauli ad Romanos et ad Corinthios 2º fo ad intelligend’ M. Rogerus Keys precentor Ecclesie Cathedralis beati Petri Exon’ prima die mensis Januarij anno domini Millesimo Quadringentesimo Sexagesimo Nono contulit et dedit M. Johanni Philipp Rectori et socijs Collegij Exon’ in Oxon’ Vocati Stapildon halle cathenandum in libraria eiusdem collegij ad vsum predictorum Rectoris et sociorum ac successorum suorum in eodem studere volencium qui diu durare poterit pro quo qua quidem donacione iidem[sic] M. Johannes Phillip Rector et socij collegij predict’ obligarunt se et successores suos Rectores et socios eiusdem collegij prefat’ M. Rogero virtute iuramenti prestiti quod solempniter cum nota postquam idem M. Rogerus ab hac luce migrauerit inperpetuum semel in anno tenebunt obitum suum et benefactorum suorum cum exiquijs et missa in crastino per Rectorem ibidem pro tempore existen’ vel vnum de socijs collegi predict’ in capella eiusdem celebrand’. Si quis autem prefatum librum a collegio predicto alienauerit vel de libraria predicta sine licencia Rectoris et omni sociorum collegij predict’ tam absencium quam presencium pro tempore existencium abstulerit alienauerit vel ad extram cauauerit nisi causa correccionis reparacionis vel ligacionis per predict’ Rectorem et omnes socios predictos prius approbanda auctoritate Dei patris omnipotentis et beatorum apostolorum suorum Petri et Pauli ac Reuerende in Christo patris et domini Johannis Dei gracia Exon’ Episcopi anatentizatus[sic] sit ipso facto’. Keys’s arms are in the border on fol. 1r.

Exeter library identifications are, on the pastedown, bookplate 3, and on it ‘173–H–5’, deleted and replaced by ‘213.G.4’, and ‘Coxe LX (pencil). On fol. 1v, ‘M.6.4 vol. 15’ (pencil, s. xixin?).

Record Sources

Andrew G. Watson, A descriptive catalogue of the medieval manuscripts of Exeter College, Oxford (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 2000.


For enquiries relating to this manuscript please contact Exeter College Library.

Funding of Cataloguing

Conversion of the printed catalogue to TEI funded by the Rector and Fellows of Exeter College.

Last Substantive Revision

2020-04-29: First online publication

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