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

St John's College MS. 193



Language(s): Latin

Fols. 1ra–367vb:
Incipit: Frater ambrosius michi tua munuscula perferens detulit simul et suauissimas literas […] [fol. 3rb] In principio creauit deus celum et terram […] [fol. 284ra] Matheus ex iudea sicut in ordine primus ponitur […] [fol. 284rb] Liber generationis ihesu cristi filii dauid filii habraham
Explicit: veni domine ihesu Gracia domini nostri ihesu cristi et cum omnibus uobis Amen

A full bible in Ker’s ‘usual order’ (MMBL, 1:96–7), but with substantial omissions, lacking the prayer of Manasseh (at fol. 137va), 2/3 Ezra (fol. 145ra, noted by a hand of s. xv in the upper margin), and Psalms (fol. 164rb). Following the end of 2 Macc. (fol. 282rb) are two nearly blank leaves; the ensuing leaf (fol. 284ra), with the head of the New Testament, appears a re-used waste leaf, beginning with the fragmentary ‘gentium exaltasti super terram habitationem meam et pro morte—ante tempus et dabit nobis mercedem uestram in tempore suo’, i.e. Ecclus. 51:12–38, also reproduced in full in its proper place.

The majority of the standard prologues are absent: Stegmüller, Bibl. 327 to 2 Chron. (fol. 127ra); Stegmüller, Bibl. 343 to Esther (fol. 152rb); Stegmüller, Bibl. 357 to Job (fol. 156rb); Stegmüller, Bibl. 491 to Baruch (fol. 226rb); Stegmüller, Bibl. 507 to Hosea (fol. 252rb) and all subsequent prologues to the minor prophets excepting Obadiah (noted below); Stegmüller, Bibl. 547 and 553 to Maccabees (fol. 264vb); Stegmüller, Bibl. 589 to Matthew (fol. 284rb); Stegmüller, Bibl. 728 (fol. 334vb) to Philippians, and all the remaining New Testament prologues, except Stegmüller, Bibl. 793 to Hebrews.

In a number of cases, prologues not from the standard set occur: Stegmüller, Bibl. 468 to Wisdom (fol. 174vb) has a brief preface ‘Incipit quartus ordo eorum librorum qui in […] ’ (frequent in MSS, e.g., Oxford, Christ Church MS 105, fol. 200); instead of the actual biblical ‘prologue’ to Ecclesiasticus (fol. 179rb), Stegmüller, Bibl. 473 (HRABANUS); instead of Stegmüller, Bibl. 519 + 517 to Obadiah (fol. 256vb), Stegmüller, Bibl. 516; instead of Stegmüller, Bibl. 677 to Romans (fol. 320ra), Stegmüller, Bibl. 670 (PELAGIUS).

Added texts:

a. Fol. 367vb

following the explicit, two notes (mixed anglicana/secretary, s. xv med.):

Incipit: O mors desiderabilis omnium malorum finis O mors laborum clausula […]
(not in Walther);
Incipit: Nouum testametum [sic for testamentum] grece scriptum est excepto euangelium Matthei […]
b. Fol. vi
(the same hand as the preceding):
Incipit: Anni ab adam vsque ad diluuium ij. M1CClxij. vt inquid Augustinus […]

and on fol. viii, among other additions, added notes on theological virtues, in the same hand,

Incipit: Fides est substancia rerum sperandarum […]

Flyleaf texts:

c. Fol. ii (written on the recto only)

the end of one text and a second full one (although substantial parts pared away in both margins); the second item concerns ‘ecclesia nostra’ (no place apparently named) following the death of the old bishop (in rough anglicana, s. xiv1).

d. Fol. iiv:

two proverbs: ‘Salust’ Omnis natura mortalium auida est imperij Senec’ Moderata durant Inmoderata ruunt’ (s. xv, mixed secretary/anglicana).

e. Fol. iii (written on the recto only):

‘Hic ordo librorum habetur in ista biblia’, with the number of chapters in each (anglicana, s. xiv/xv).

f. Fol. iiiv:

‘Mors est in olla et regn’’ (s. xvii).

g. Fols. iv–v:

a table of the miracles in the four Gospels, then of parables in the four Gospels (s. xiv in., incipient anglicana).

h. Fol. viiv:

‘Nomina librorum biblie veteris testamenti’, a list with the number of chapters in each and followed by ‘Versus de nominibus librorum in biblia Sunt genes ex le flu deu iu Ruth re par es ne | […] (WIC 18824) (anglicana, s. xiv in.).

i. Fol. viiirv:

a variety of theological notes, those on the verso concerning the virgin (anglicana, s. xiii/xiv).

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: noua
Form: codex
Support: Vellum (FSOS/FHHF).
Extent: Fols. v + 367 + iv (numbered fols. vi–ix).
Dimensions (leaf): 170 × 120 mm.


With the exception of a possible quire signature (‘7’ at the foot of quire 8, leaf 1, fol. 113), there is no visible production data, and the book is too tightly bound to be absolutely certain about the sewing. Rather tentatively, the volume appears to begin: 1–716 812 9–1416 [to 220, reasonably certainly] 1518 1614 1716 18–1910 206 2112, thereafter (fols. 317ff.) extremely unclear. There is sewing between fols. 364 and 365, and fols. vi–viii may in fact belong to the book proper, not to the binding.


In double columns, each column 112 × 36 mm. , with 5 mm between columns, in 54 lines to the column. No prickings, bounded and ruled in lead and brown and black ink.


Written in gothic textura quadrata (more than one scribe). Punctuation by point and punctus elevatus, frequently none.


Book headings in red.

At the openings of books, 7-or 8-line red and blue lombards with flourishing of the same; a few books introduced by multi-line lombards alternating red and blue.

Biblical chapters marked with alternating red and blue roman numerals preceded by red or blue paraph; in the text, chapter divisions often unmarked, sometimes a 1-line red or blue lombard.

Running titles identify books in alternate red and blue lombards.

See AT, no. 245 (26).


A modern replacement. Sewn on five thongs. At the front, a modern paper flyleaf, and four medieval vellum flyleaves (the first a former pastedown; fols. iv + v a bifolium); at the rear, three medieval vellum flyleaves and a modern paper flyleaf (vi–x).


Origin: s. xiii2 ; England

Provenance and Acquisition

............ Anno domini MmoCCCCmo xlxxviij. die \..... Nouembr’/ ⟨ ⟩ s Magistrum sent’ August’ de trinitat’ ⟨ ⟩vynarc’?’ (fol. viv, perhaps a cancelled caucio, violently erased, to the point of tearing the leaf).

Hugo Inceus’ (fol. 82 margin, perhaps s. xvi in.).

‘cheshirus’ (fol. 131v, in the inter-columnar space lower margin), ‘Robertus’ (fol. 132, similarly placed), ‘Robertvs cheshyrvs’ (fol. 132, upside down in the lower margin, s. xvi ex.).

A cancelled ownership inscription (fol. ii foot).

‘Liber Collegij Sanctj Johannis Baptistae ex Dono D Doct Latewar huius Collegij socij 23o Junij Anno Domini 1598’ (fol. vv).

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

2021-09: First online publication

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