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

St John's College MS. 185

Paterius, excerpts from works of Gregory the Great


Language(s): Latin

Fols. 1–158
Rubric: Incipit liber testimoniorvm quem PATERIVS de opvscvlis sancti GREGORII svmmo stvdio excerpere stvdvit |
Incipit: [fol. 1v] Dum beatissimi atque apostolici viri gregorii pontificis nostri vestri quoque ad deum nutriteris dicta […] [fol. 3v, the text; the first three lines, in rustic capitals, rubbed to the point of illegibility] Uirtutes angelicę quę in diuino amore fixę perstiterunt lapsis superbientibus angelis
Explicit: diuinitate tua intelligentiam nostri sensus excede et in te nobis incomprehensibilis permane
Paterius, excerpts from the works of Gregory the Great

CPL 1718, ed. PL 79:683–916. Fol. 158v was originally blank.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: interpretacione
Form: codex
Support: Vellum (HSOS/HFFH), suede-like membrane.
Extent: Fols. iii + 158 + iii (numbered fols. iv–vi).
Dimensions (leaf): 187 × 140 mm.
Dimensions (written): 135 × 95+ mm.


1–58 68(–1, a cancel, with no text loss) 7–98 106 [at the join of two scribal stints] | 11–138 148(–8, another cancel) 156 16–208 214. No catchwords or signatures.


In long lines, 23 lines to the page. Prickings; bounded (usually indistinct) and ruled in stylus.


Written in English caroline, in a variety of hands. Punctuation various, systems including by medial point, punctus elevatus, and punctus versus; by point, medial point, and high point; and by point and medial point.


Headings and 2-line initials (5-line at fol. 3v, the head of the text proper) in red at chapter divisions (now much oxidized).

In the final quire, the capitals are alternate red and green.


A modern replacement, with the top board off. Sewn on three thongs. At the front, a marbled paper leaf (dated 1906 on the verso) and two modern paper flyleaves; at the rear, two modern paper flyleaves and another marbled paper leaf (iv–vi).


Origin: s. xi in. ; England

Provenance and Acquisition

‘Hic liber est ecclesie Sancte Marje de sutuic’ Quem qui eidem ecclesie abstulerit uel titulum istum dolose deleuerit nisi eidem condigne satisfecerit Anathema sit Maranatha fiat Amen’ (fols. 157v–8, roughly contemporary, s. xi, as are examples at fols. 4v–5 and 83v–4; a later example, s. xiv in., at fols. 1v–2) (Ker, MLGB 181). Not listed among the ‘Deflorationes’ of Gregory at Registrum R 2.13 (61).

‘Hauser Testes decime diuionis [sic for diuisionis] Gunfridus debruha⟨l⟩ Henricus decoredes henricus nepos ipsius Hugo ⟨ ⟩ Goterus Wido filius eius Bauduinus defestra Herbe ⟨ ⟩ bure Bodo Rainerus Franco Aubaudus ⟨ ⟩’ (fol. 158v, s. xii ex.; uses the letter w, not ‘wynn’).

‘pater noster qui es in celis sanctificetur [the last word later]’ and ‘domine da natura?’ (fol. 1; the first certainly s. xi, the second too rubbed to be certain, both above the title ‘Liber testimoniorum excerptus de libris beati gregorii’, in anglicana, s. xiv/xv).

Iohannes Whyte de Suthvyke in Comitatu Sutht armiger dedit hunc librum Thome Whyte de london militi ad vsum Colegij per ipsum de nouo erecti in Oxon’ Anno 1555’ (fol. 3v, 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.


    Eligius Dekkers and Aemilius Gaar, Clavis patrum latinorum, 3rd edn. (Turnhout, 1995).
    N. R. Ker, Medieval Libraries of Great Britain: A List of Surviving Books. Royal Historical Society Guides and Handbooks. 2nd edn. (London, 1964), extended by Andrew G. Watson, MLGB: Supplement to the Second Edition. RHS Guides and Handbooks 15 (1987).
    Jacques-Paul Migne (ed.), Patrologia Latina 79 (Paris 1849).
    Richard H. and Mary A. Rouse and R. A. B. Mynors (eds.), Registrum Anglie de libris doctorum et auctorum veterum. Corpus of British Medieval Library Catalogues 2 (London, 1991).

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2023-01: First online publication

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