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

St John's College MS. 45

Documents of the Council of Constance


Language(s): Latin

Fols. 1–409v:
Rubric: [the title added later] Gesta Concilij Constantiensis ⟨I⟩n Nomine sancte et indiuidue trinitatis Amen Hic liber continet Ordinaciones statuta Constitutiones decreta et alia acta et gesta in generali Constan’ Concilio Presidente Sanctissimo in cristo patre et domino nostro Iohanne […]
Incipit: ⟨I⟩n nomine domini Amen nostri ihesu cristi Anno a Natiuitate eiusdem Millesimo Quadringentesimo quartodecimo Indiction’ Septima die lune quarta Mensis Nouembris […] Cum aliis continuando Pisanum generale Concilium statuit ipsum Concilium iterum conuocandum ad hanc Ciuitatem Constanciensem
Explicit: misit ad considerandam terram illam Non obstan’ quod plura capita erant in vno ||
Documents of the Council of Constance

The voluminous documents are surveyed (by category, not chronologically as here) in Heinrich Finke et al. (eds.), Acta Concilii Constanciensis (Münster i. W., 1896–1928). The text seems to break off at the end, and there are mid-text blank leaves at fols. 31–7, 58v–9 (one line on the first side), about half each of fols. 259v–60, and 321v.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: Conuocauimus
Form: codex
Support: Paper. The quires are regular groups, usually of six sheets, folded in folio. Excepting three sheets without watermarks (fols. 245 + 252, 307 + 312, and perhaps 268 + 277), on a single stock, of the type Drache/Basilic, of a fairly anonymous sort, not immediately associable with any single example in Piccard.
Extent: ii + 409 + v (numbered iii–vii).
Dimensions (quire): 305 × 210 mm.
Dimensions (written): 200 × 120 mm.
Foliation: There is a medieval foliation which omits 111 and thus assigns each leaf after fol. 110 no a number one in excess of the actual.


110 2–312 416 5–2412 2514 2610 27–3312 3412 (–12). Catchwords in the gutters. Given the damage to lower edges, it is impossible to ascertain whether any signatures occurred.


All leaves are variously eaten away along the leading edge bottom and corner, apparently the combined result of consultation and damp.


Written in long lines, about 29 to the page (the first and last quires rather more densely written, up to 42 lines). No prickings or rules; bounded in lead and occasionally stylus.


Written in secretary. Punctuation by occasional point.


Entirely unadorned.

All textual divisions have penwork initials in the ink of the text.

Where spaces have been left for rubrication, they are unfilled (guide letters survive).

All headings in the text ink.


Dark brown leather, s. xvii, over millboards, with a simple gold fillet on both boards. The front pastedown is vellum, with a text on the board side and a College bookplate pasted on; the rear pastedown is modern paper. At the front, two paper flyleaves, followed by a vellum stub, from the pastedown; at the rear, five paper flyleaves (iii–vii).


Origin: s. xv med. or xv3/4 ; English

Provenance and Acquisition

An old shelfmark ‘Abac: ij. N.35’ (the front pastedown).

‘Liber Collegii Divi Joannis Baptistae Oxon Ex dono Edwardis Bernardi Socii 1667’ (fol. 1, the lower margin).

Record Sources

Ralph Hanna, A descriptive catalogue of the western medieval manuscripts of St. John's College, Oxford (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002)


For enquiries relating to this manuscript please contact St John's College Library.

Funding of Cataloguing

Conversion of the printed catalogue to TEI funded by the Thompson Family Charitable Trust.

Last Substantive Revision

2020-11: First online publication

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