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

St John's College MS 59

Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae


Language(s): Latin

Fols. 1ra-130vb:
Incipit: Quia sicud damacenus dicit homo factus ad ymaginem dei dicitur sed quod per ymaginem
Explicit: grauitatis cicius uel tardius per ignem purgatur
THOMAS AQUINAS, Summa theologiae

Ia IIae, qq. 1–89 art. 2 only, ed. in the Pauline edition (Rome: Editiones Paulinae, 1962), 555–936. Indications of contents appear on the front pastedown (s. xiv/xv) and fol. iv (s. xv and s. xvii).

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: quod appetit
Form: codex
Support: Vellum (HSOS/HFFH)
Extent: i + 130 + i (numbered ii)
Dimensions (leaf): 312 × 210 mm.


1–158 1610. All leaves in the first half of each quire signed (from quire 6 on, excepting quire 12, where nearly all lower margins have been lost) with an arbitrary sign and a roman numeral. Quires 13 to the end are signed, for example, with the arbitrary signº: it forms a series because the scribe places the mark in different positions (ahead, above, below) relative to the folio numerals. Catchwords, the first boxed, near the gutter.


Substantial water damage to the lower margins, particularly in early portions; the leaves of generally uneven sizes, including lower margins cut away on fols. 90–4, and leading edges cut away on fols. 99–102 and 109–10.


In double columns, usually each column about 250–5 × 80–5 mm. mm, with 14 mm between columns, in 56–8 lines to the column. The first and last quires show the full potential range: in quire 1, each column 260–5 mm x 90 mm, with 9 mm between columns, in 58 lines; in quire 16, each column 247 × 7 and 80 mm, with 14 mm between columns, in 46–8 lines. Frequent prickings; bounded and ruled in brown and black ink.


Written in anglicana, probably a single hand, although there are shifts of duct and pen. Punctuation by medial point.


No rubrics filled, although boxed instructions for them appear regularly in the lower margins.

At the head, a 5-line red and blue lombard on red flourishing and with a red and blue bar border.

Other initia have 3-line alternating red and blue lombards on violet or red flourishing.

Alternate red and blue paraphs break up sentences.


A modern replacement. Sewn on five thongs. Pastedowns vellum, from a medieval binding, a College bookplate on the front pastedown above the shelfmark ‘Cod. MS. LIX’. At both the front and rear, a single medieval vellum flyleaf (the rear ii).


Origin: s. xiv1 ; English

Provenance and Acquisition

Liber sancte Marie Radyng’ quem qui alienauerit anathema sit (fol. 1, upper margin, s. xiv med.?) (Ker, MLGB 158).

‘Liber Collegii Sancti Ioannis Baptistae Oxon’ ex dono Magistri loannis Stonor de North stoke in Comitatu Oxon’ Generosi’ (fol. 2, upper 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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