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

MS. Bodl. 218

Summary Catalogue no.: 2054


Bede , Commentary on Luke
Language(s): Latin
2. (fol. 165v)
Preface for the Mass

Added in southern (?) England in the 11th century (?): preface for the mass of the Assumption (Qui mortis imperium sua gloriosa nece); troped Ite missa est (Ite perhennis concives patriae); responsory in honour of St. Scholastica (Virgineo honore es ornata); Ite missa est and Benedicamus. All with musical notation, except for the preface.

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: parchment
Dimensions (leaf): 325 × 260 mm.


Carolingian minuscule, with insular corrections and additions.

Musical Notation:

Adiastematic and half diastematic Canterbury neums, fol. 165v


Marginal drawings in pen and with a pencil (parly erased) added c. 1000 to a Tours MS. of 9th century, beginning (P&A iii. 32, pl. III).


Balck velvet with brass clasp-fittings (clasps and side-bosses gone); title label on parchment on the front cover.


Origin: 9th century, beginning (main ms.) c. 1000 (added drawings) ; French, Tours ; English (added drawings)

Provenance and Acquisition

Corrections and additions in English hands, 9th and 11th centuries.

Royal binding for Henry VIII.

Charles Howard, earl of Nottigham (d. 1624): possibly confiscated by his father, William Howard (d. 1573), from Thomas Copley (1532-84) of Gatton, Surrey, and perhaps obtained by Copley from the royal library at Nonsuch (Carley in Books and Collectors 1200-1700 (1997)).

Presented by him in 1604.

Record Sources

Description adapted (2018) from Pächt and Alexander, the Summary Catalogue, and (for fol. 165v) S. J. P. Van Dijk, Handlist of the Latin Liturgical Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library Oxford (typescript, 1957) Vol. 1: Mass Books, p. 210.


To ensure its availability to future readers, access to this item is restricted, and readers are asked to work from reproductions and published descriptions as far as possible. To apply to see the original, please send a message to specialcollections.enquiries@bodleian.ox.ac.uk, outlining the subject of your research, the importance of this item to that research, and the resources you have already consulted.


    Otto Pächt and J. J. G. Alexander, Illuminated Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library Oxford, III (1973), no. 32