St John's College MS. 78
Latin Brut Chronicle and Gesta Romanorum
A modern replacement. Sewn on five thongs. At the front, a marbled paper leaf, a modern paper flyleaf, and part of a medieval vellum one (mounted on modern paper, with a College bookplate); at the rear two modern paper flyleaves and another marbled paper one (iv–vi).
Provenance and Acquisition
‘Shyrburne’ (fol. 54v, at the end of item 1); ‘Chyrburn ⟨ ⟩’ (fol. 153v, in rubricator’s red by the explicit); ‘frater Iohannes Schyrburne me fecit fieri’ (fol. 156v, lower margin). Given the final style, he is presumably the Dominican who appears in the historiated initial. A. B. Emden, A Survey of Dominicans in England (Rome, 1967) includes two John Shirbournes, both too early to be this man. Although produced separately, the Sherburne materials in both portions imply that the two parts of the book have been joined since the fifteenth century and may in fact have been originally intended as companion items.
A blazon ‘per pale, paly gules and [? faded], in chief azure a lion passant or’, impaling an illegible coat, ‘azure a rubbed design or’ (within the historiated initial, fol. 1, the arms of Shyrburne’s client). The arms of Waldegrave are ‘per pale argent and gules’; perhaps closer are Widnam (Sussex) ‘argent two pallets gules, on a chief azure a lion passant of the field crowned or’.
‘Babyngton’, with a description of the contents of the first manuscript (fol. iiiv; s. xvi ex., italic). Francis Babington was an important Oxford figure of the early 1560s: master of Balliol 1559, rector of Lincoln 1560–3, Vice-Chancellor of the University. He was deprived as a concealed papist and died abroad in 1569 (DNB). Andrew Watson informs us that Neil Ker once assembled a list of thirty-six of his books, eight of them MSS.
The old College shelfmark, cancelled, ‘Abac: ij N.31’ (fol. iiiv).
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
2022-08: First online publication