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

MS. Bodl. 693

Summary Catalogue no.: 2875


John Gower, Confessio Amantis

The (unrevised) first recension of the Confessio Amantis

Followed by a metrical explicit (begins 'Explicit iste liber qui transeat'), 'Epistola super huius operis ... complementum' and Gower's account of his works (begins 'Quia unusquisque')

Language(s): Middle English and Latin

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: parchment
Extent: iii + 199 leaves
Dimensions (binding): 15.375 × 11 in.
Catchwords by the scribe, in a faintly drawn box


2 cols

Musical Notation:

Notation on staves (see van Dijk 1957)


Pächt and Alexander iii. 825, Pl. LXXX

Fine miniatures (fols 4v and 8v)

Fine borders

Fine initials

In the style of Herman Scheerre


Reddish brown leather, stamped, with the arms of England in colour, and 'I.R.', showing that it was made for James I


Origin: 15th century, beginning ; England

Provenance and Acquisition

Owned by 'Frauncois Halle Anno M V° vj [1506] Garde le fine'

On fol. 1r are the arms of Charles Brandon duke of Suffolk, K.G. (d. 1545), quartering those of Bruyn or Brown and Rokeley (?: his crest is on fols 1, 86v) have been inserted, within a Garter

'Donum Johannis King, S. Theologiæ Doctoris, & Decani Aedis Christi'

Probably given in 1608, when Johannis King was Vice-Chancellor and is mentioned as a donor

MS. Bodl. 693, flyleaves


(fols i, 199)
Language(s): Latin

Physical Description

Form: codex
Support: Parchment


Origin: 15th century ; England

Additional Information

Record Sources

Summary description abbreviated from the Summary Catalogue (1922). Decoration, localization and date follow Pächt and Alexander (1973)

Digital Images

Digital Bodleian (9 images from 35mm slides)


    Online resources:

    Printed descriptions:

    S. J. P. van Dijk, Latin Liturgical Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, vol. 5: Fragments - Mass Books (typescript, 1957), p. 87

Last Substantive Revision

2023-09-22: Description revised to incorporate all the information in the Summary Catalogue (1922)