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

MS. Buchanan e. 11

Former shelfmark: MS. Lat. liturg. e. 32


Language(s): Latin; Picard (?) Middle French

Book of Hours, Use unidentified

Short added texts, which occur intermittently throughout the manuscript, are listed following the original texts, as sections [II] - [IV] below.

Most of the texts in section [I] have rubrics with spellings characteristic of French Flanders (e.g. 'tierche', 'lichon').


[Item 1 occupies quires I-II](fols. 2r-7v)

Calendar, in (Picard?) French, rather sparse; lacking Feb., Mar., May, June, Sept., and Oct. due to the loss of two leaves after each of fols. 2, 3, and 5; each month headed by a note on the length of the calendar and lunar month; major feasts (in red) include Nicasius of Rheims (14 Dec.); other feasts include Aldegundis ('Audegone') (30 Jan.), 'Patris' (16 Apr.), 'Rufin' (19 Apr.), Thomas the apostle (3 July), Milburga (10 July [sic]; perhaps an error for Mildred, whose feast-day is 13 July), Vincent, abbot of Soignies (14 July), 'Rufin' (27 Aug.), Hubert, of Liège (3 Nov.), 'Claudin' (8 Nov.), Livin (12 Nov.), Linus (26 Nov.), Alexander (18 Dec.), 'Paulin' (23 Dec.); with 15th-century additions, in various hands, including Peter ('saint piere le martir prescheur') (29 Apr.), Arnulf of Metz (18 July), Dominic (5 Aug.), Roche, in plummet (16 Aug.), and Fiacre (30 Aug.).

Language(s): Middle French
[Items 2–5 occupy quires III-VII](fols. 8r-10v)

Hours of the Cross

(fols. 11r-13v)

Hours of the Holy Spirit.

(fols. 14r-46v)

Hours of the Virgin, Use unidentified, with three lessons at Matins; the antiphon and capitulum at Prime are: 'O admirabile ...', and 'Ego mater pulcre dilectionis ...'; at None they are: 'Germinavit radix ...', and 'Per te dei genitrix ...'

(fol. 47r-v)


Incipit: Veni creator spiritus mentes tuorum uisita

(Chevalier 21204; pr. Analecta Hymnica, II (1888), 93–4 no. 132).

[Items 6–8 occupy quires VIII-XI](fols. 48r-56v)

The Seven Penitential Psalms

(fols. 56v-59v)

Litany and collects, the litany with no localisable saints, followed by two collects:

(fol. 59r-v)
Incipit: Deus qui[sic] proprium est misereri
(pr. Corpus orationum, no. 1143)
Incipit: Fidelium deus omnium conditor et redemptor
(ibid., no. 2684b).
(fols. 60r-78v)

Office of the Dead, Use unidentified, with three lessons at Matins; with the following lessons, responses, and versicles: I 'Parce michi ...', 'Credo quod ...', 'Quem uisurus ...'; II 'Tedet animam ...', 'Qui lazarum ...', 'Qui uenturus ...'; III 'Manus tue ...', 'Libera me domine de morte ...', 'Dies illa ...'.


(fols. 79r-84r)

Prayers to the Virgin added at the end of the main text, by a near-contemporary scribe, for a female supplicant

(fols. 79r-81r)
Incipit: ⟨O⟩ intemerata
Explicit: orbis terrarum Inclina aures tue pietatis ...

[feminine forms] (pr. Wilmart, Auteurs spirituels, 488–90)

(fol. 81r)

Suffrage to the Virgin, with antiphon, versicle, and the prayer

Incipit: ⟨D⟩eus qui in sancta cruce pro salute nostra pendens
Explicit: in uitam eternam introducant Per ...
Incipit: ⟨O⟩bsecro te

[feminine forms] (pr. Wordsworth, Horae Eboracenses, 66–7); fol. 84v originally blank.


Suffrages to saints, added in the 15th century in blank spaces throughout the main texts, by perhaps two scribes, one of them responsible only for (i)

(fol. 7v)

Suffrage to St. Fiacre (the prayer perhaps a version of that pr. as Corpus orationum, no. 3374)

(fol. 10v)

Suffrage to Mary Magdalen (the prayer pr. ibid., no. 3231)

(fol. 13v)

Suffrage to St. Hubert (the prayer a version of that pr. ibid., no. 1999)

(fols. 46v and 78v)

Suffrage to St. Margaret (the prayer a version of that pr. ibid., no. 3125b)

(fol. 47v)

The Verses of St. Bernard

Incipit: ⟨I⟩llumina oculos
Explicit: Ora pro nobis beate bernarde

The first two verses given by cue only; the verses in the same order as in MS. Buchanan e. 9, fols. 118v-119r but with verses (iii) and (iv) as listed there run together as one; followed by the usual prayer:

(fol. 59v)
Incipit: ⟨O⟩mnipotens sempiterne deus qui ezechie regi Iude
Explicit: misericordiam tuam impetrare. Per ...


Prayers and verses in French, added in the 16th(?) century, probably by a single scribe, on the final leaves

(fol. 84r)

Letter 'M' surrounded by four comma-shaped marks, above '[O?] bien doret [...?] le coeur[?] mary femme ... cest dure destinee', followed by 'laet drushet | varen', and 'kf hfs mbxkf'(?), the latter presumably in code (for example, if each letter is replaced by the preceding letter of the alphabet, one may decode it as 'je ger la vie')

(fol. 84v)


Incipit: Bien te doy hain[?] et blasmer
('bien te doy' repeated at the bottom of the page)
Incipit: Ma joie nest que de pleurer
Incipit: Mon vieng amor[?] fin[?]
(fol. 85v)


Incipit: Argent faict raige | Amour faict mariaige | ...

with 'Le present'(?) written above, in lighter ink; and '1567 29 Juin [?]' written below, in darker ink.

Language(s): Middle French

Physical Description

Secundo folio: (Calendar, fol. 3) 'KL Avril'; (text, fol. 9) 'nobis peccatoribus'.
Form: codex
Support: Parchment; the margins around the text frequently marked, as if by attempted washing.
Extent: iii (paper, the first marbled, originally conjoint with the pastedown) + i (parchment, apparently added, 16th-century(?)) + 83 + i (parchment, apparently added, 16th(?)-century) + iii (paper, the last marbled, conjoint with the pastedown).
Dimensions (leaf): 169–70 × 119–21 mm.
Dimensions (ruled): 102–4 × 72–4 mm.
Dimensions (written): 102 × 71 mm.
Foliation: Foliated in modern pencil: i-iii, 1–88.


Mostly on quires of 8 leaves: the structure of the first two quires is uncertain, but there are at least six leaves missing from them (see under Text): I?6–4+1 (? 2nd & 3rd leaves missing after fol. 2; 5th & 6th leaves missing after fol. 3; 1st leaf added, fol. 1) (fols. 1–3), II?6–2 (? 3rd & 4th leaves missing, after fol. 5) (fols. 4–7) | III-VII8 (fols. 8–47) | VIII-XI8 (fols. 48–79) | XII6–1+1 (6th leaf cancelled, another leaf added in its place, fol. 85) (fols. 80–85); the leaves containing the miniatures were excised, and re-attached on parchment strips (that on fol. 14v has traces of writing), as were fols. 38 & 80; no catchwords visible; 18th/19th-century QUIRE SIGNATURES in arabic numerals, in ink: 1–12, in the upper gutter margin of the first recto of each quire.


18 lines ruled in pale red ink, between single vertical bounding lines extending the full height of the page, the top and bottom horizontals extending the full width of the page; quire XII is ruled with only 17 lines, and the bottom horizontal does not extend the full width; no prickings visible. 17 lines of text per page, quire XII with 16 lines of text.


Written in a spiky Gothic bookhand; item 9 in a near-contemporary more rounded Gothic bookhand, text items 10–12 in 15th- & 16th-century lettre bâtarde scripts


Headings in red.

Five large miniatures of mediocre quality, gently arched, above five lines of text, within a gold framing line, above a four-line initial, and surrounded by a four-sided border (see below):

  • (fol. 8r) Hours of the Cross. Crucifixion, with the Virgin and John.
  • (fol. 11r) Hours of the Holy Spirit. Pentecost; depicted as if seen through the doorway of a building with two arcades of arches to each side.
  • (fol. 14r) Hours of the Virgin. Annunciation; the border incorporating a lily-pot, peacock, and crown.
  • (fol. 48r) Penitential Psalms. Last Judgment.
  • (fol. 60r) Office of the Dead. Funeral Service, with the bier before an altar, three grey-clad mourners, and two clerics at a lectern.

Four-sided borders surrounding miniatures and other pages with a four-line initial, of gold ivyleaf, stylized and naturalistic foliage, occasional animals and birds e.g. a rabbit(?) (fol. 11r), a crane(?) (fol. 21v), a peacock (fols. 31v, 43r), a cat with a mouse (fol. 48r), and a crown (fols. 14r, 60r); four-line foliate initials at the start of the main texts and each hour in the Hours of the Virgin; two-line initials in gold against blue and red grounds with white tracery, to psalms, canticles, lessons, the KL monograms in the calendar, etc.; similar one-line initials to verses and other minor divisions; line-fillers in the litany.


Sewn on five cords (some sewing stations of a previous binding visible), with endbands; bound in 19th-century brown leather over pasteboards, the covers, edges, and turn-ins of the boards roll-tooled in blind all over with foliate wave-patterns and geometric designs; the body of the book detached from the binding at the upper joint; the pastedowns and their conjoint leaves marbled; fol. ii with a bunch of grapes as a watermark; one green silk bookmark; the edges of the leaves gilt. At some time after the book had had its excised leaves re-inserted, rough holes were crudely stabbed through the gutter margin-presumably rudimentary stab-stitching for a previous binding.


Origin: Flemish (French Flanders); 15th century, early

Provenance and Acquisition

Unidentified original owner: the Picard(?) French and some of the saints in the calendar (Aldegund, Hubert, Livin, etc.) suggest that the book was made for use in French Flanders, perhaps for someone with Dominican interest (Peter Martyr, Dominic); text item 9 was added for a woman, who may have been the original owner.

Anthoine Hanvbeel, Ghent, 16th century; inscribed (fol. 1r): 'A dieu Lhonneur | 1570 [the date erased but visible under U.V. light] | Antoine Hanvbeel [read by van Dijk as Hautbeel] | advocat au conseil | de Flandres | A Gand'; below this, in another hand, six lines mentioning '... Mr Floreins Hanvbeel ...'; also inscribed with the start of another 16th-century ownership(?) inscription in another hand 'Le present [ ]' (fol. 85v).

Unidentified English bookseller, 19th century; inscribed in the top left corner of the last flyleaf (fol. 88r) with a price-code(?) in pencil: 'h v m', vertically, each letter separated from the next by a horizontal line; other pencil notes erased, but including (fol. i verso): '[Interesting?] early MS' and '£4 11s 6'; inscriptions in pencil in English (now largely illegible) identify the major texts, e.g. fols. 8r, 11r, etc.

John Buchanan: inscribed in pencil with the 'Descriptive list' number, '11.', in the top left corner of fol. i verso.

Rt. Hon. T. R. Buchanan (1846–1911).

Given to the Bodleian in 1939 by his widow,Mrs. E. O. Buchanan, when it was accessioned as MS. Lat. liturg. e. 32; re-referenced as MS. Buchanan e. 11 in 1941.

Record Sources

Adapted from Peter Kidd, Medieval Manuscripts from the Collection of T. R. Buchanan in the Bodleian Library, Oxford (Oxford, 2001)

Digital Images

Digital Bodleian (1 image from 35mm slides)


Last Substantive Revision

2017-07-01: First online publication.