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

St John's College MS 207



Language(s): Latin

1. Fols. 1ra–590vb
Rubric: Incipit epistola sancti IERONIMI presbiteri ad paulinum de omnibus diuine historie libri [sic]
Incipit: Frater ambrosius in tua munuscula perferens detulit simul […]
Rubric: [fol. 4va, the text] Incipit liber geneseos
Incipit: In principio creauit deus celum et terram […]
Rubric: [fol. 474ra] Incipit liber Matheus
Incipit: Matheus ex iudea sicut in ordine primus ponitur […]
Rubric: [fol. 474va, the text] Incipit mathei euangelium
Incipit: Liber generationis ihesu cristi filii dauid filii abraham
Explicit: uenio cito amen veni domine iesu Gracia domini nostri iesu cristi cum omnibus uobis amen

A Bible in the normal Ker order (MMBL 1:96–7), including the prayer of Manasses and 2/3 Ezra. At fols. 287vb–8rab, at a join between booklets and scribal stints, a portion of Stegmüller, Bibl. 457, the prologue to Proverbs, was copied twice, once by each of the scribes. Only three lines are written in the concluding column, fol. 590vb.

2. Fols. 591ra–646va
Rubric: Hic incipiunt interpretationes hebreicorum
Incipit: Aaz apprehendens uel apprehensio Aai certificans uel testimonium
Explicit: Zvsim consiliantes eos uel consiliatores eorum
STEPHEN LANGTON, Interpretationes nominum hebraicorum (Stegmüller, Bibl. 7709 [5:234–5]; cf. Sharpe no. 1669 [at 628], ed. in Bedae Opera (Cologne, 1688), 3:371–480.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: prophetis
Form: codex
Support: Vellum (FSOS/FHHF).
Extent: Fols. i + 646 + i (numbered fol. ii).
Dimensions (leaf): 143 × 95 mm.


1–424 526 624 7–822 928 1022 1118 [fol. 258] | 1214 (lacks one in second half) 1316 [fol. 287] | 1430 1528 1628 (?lacks one in second half) 1728 (?lacks one in second half) 1828 (?lacks one in second half) 1920 2024 (?lacks one in second half) 21–2424 2524+1 (+25) [fol. 590] | 2632 2724. A few catchwords under the inner columns, most cut away. All leaves in the first half of each quire signed, usually with a number and a letter; the numbers group blocks of quires, rather than providing a sequence. The Psalter was produced as a separate booklet by a scribe who does not appear elsewhere. Item 2, as so often, is also a separate booklet.


In double columns, each column 93–7 × 30 mm. , with 5 mm between columns, in 44 lines. No prickings; bounded and ruled in pencil and black ink.


Written in gothic textura semiquadrata. Punctuation by point.


At the heads of books, champes in gold leaf, blue, and violet, with vine or floral and animal motifs and painted marginal extenders, often the full column.

At the heads of chapters, 2-line blue lombards on extended flourishing and bar-borders in red and blue; chapter numbers in alternate red and blue.

Verses marked by red-slashed capitals.

Headings in red, a substantial number unfilled and some not filled as planned (cf. fol. 288).

Running titles identifying book in alternate red and blue lombards.

No running titles in Psalms, and nocturns marked with champes.

There are several historiated initials:

Fol. 1ra, 7-line: Jerome writing the book and, at the centre of the foot of the page, a similar-sized painting of the crucifixion with Mary and John; both use a very silvery tint for skin and gold leaf haloes.

Fol. 4v, the head of Genesis, full-column I: the seven days of creation.

Fol. 76va, Deuteronomy, 3-line: the horned Moses addressing two of the Hebrews.

Fol. 214vb, Nehemiah, 6-line: a crowned throned king addressing another man who is staring into a cup.

Fol. 247ra, Job, 7-line: Job and a comforter.

Fol. 288rb, Proverbs, 7-line: king beating his son with a mallet.

Fol. 304rb, Wisdom, 6-line: Wisdom enthroned addressing a knight.

See AT, no. 691 (68), dating s. xiii3/4, and plate xli (fol. 4v).


A modern replacement. Sewn on six thongs. At the front, one vellum flyleaf; at the rear, one vellum flyleaf (ii); the second certainly, and the first probably, pastedowns from an earlier binding.


Origin: s. xiii med. ; France

Provenance and Acquisition

A list of biblical books (s. xv, textura prescissa), not complete, filled in and with the number of chapters in each added (fol. iv, mixed anglicana/secretary s. xv).

A list of Sundays in the year, with the gospel pericopes not filled in (fol. ii, s. xv).

The old shelfmark ‘Abac: ij. No. 21’ (front pastedown).

‘Liber Collegij Sancti Joannis Baptistae Oxon Ex dono Guilelmi Laud Theologiae Doctoris et hujus Collegij Socij 1610’ (fol. i, top); the signature ‘William Laud’ (fol. iv). Exhibited Laud Exhib, no. 1 (1).

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.


    Bedae Opera (Cologne, 1688), 3:371–480
    N. R. Ker, Medieval Manuscripts in British Libraries. 4 vols. (Oxford, 1969–92).
    Richard Sharpe, A Handlist of the Latin Writers of Great Britain and Ireland before 1540. Publications of the Journal of Medieval Latin 1 (Turnhout, 1997).
    Friederich Stegmüller, Repertorium Biblicum Medii Aevi, 11 vols. (Madrid, 1950–80).

Funding of Cataloguing

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

Last Substantive Revision

2021-10: First online publication

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