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

MS. Buchanan e. 7

Former shelfmark: MS. Lat. liturg. e. 28


Book of Hours, Use of Rome and the Carmelites(?)
Language(s): Latin

Original(?) leaf signatures (see under Physical Description), and worm-holes in fols. 184–193, suggest that the texts listed here were previously bound in the following order: 6, 1, 5, 3, 4, 2.

[Item 1 occupies quires I-IX] (fols. 1r-80v)

Hours of the Virgin, Use of Rome, with three lessons at Matins; with (fols. 66v-71r) weekly, and (fol. 71r-80v) seasonal variants; Matins lacking from near the start of the hymn 'Quem terra pontus ...' to Ps. 8:3 (from '... regentes machinam.||' to '|| lactentium[sic] perfecisti ...') due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 3, and lacking Ps. 18:7–14 (from '... ad summum eius. ||' to '[domi]||nati tunc immaculatus ...') due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 5; also lacking from the weekly variant psalms to the seasonal variants (from Ps. 45:3, '...Propterea non timebimus dum||' to Ps. 97:1 '|| quia mirabilia fecit ...') due to the loss of probably six leaves after fol. 69; and lacking from the rubric for Lauds in Advent to the rubric for Prime in Advent (from '... Ad laudes et per||' to '[in?]||fra ad benedictus. ...') due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 76.

[Item 2 occupies quires X-XIII] (fols. 81r-108v)

Long Hours of the Cross, with three lessons at Matins; misbound (fols. 91–95 should follow fol. 106); Vespers ending imperfect and Compline starting imperfect due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 94 (from the prayer 'Domine iesu christe||' to Ps. 150 '|| Laudate dominum ...').

[Items 3–4 occupy quires XIV-XVI] (fols. 109r-118r)

The Seven Penitential Psalms; lacking Ps. 37:5–19 (from '... sunt caput ||' to '[cogi]||tabo pro peccato ...') due to the loss of a bifolium after fol. 112; lacking Ps. 50:14–21 and Ps. 101:1–2 (from '... principali con||' to '|| orationem meam ...') due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 114; lacking Ps. 101:9–26 (from '... mihi inimici ||' to '[manu]||um tuarum sunt ...') due to the loss of two leaves after fol. 115; lacking Ps. 129:6–8 and Ps. 142:1–5 (from '... A c-||[ustodia]' to '[an]||tiquorum meditatus ...') due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 116.

(fols. 118r-129r)

Litany and collects; the litany very short, the petitions lacking the 'A'/'Ab' and 'Per' petitions due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 120 (from '... Propitius esto. parce nobis domine. ||' to '|| Peccatores. te rogamus ...'); followed (fol. 125v-129r) by the usual ten collects (cf. MS. Buchanan e. 5, where they are listed, with refs.), the fifth with '... famulo tuo papa nostro ...'; fol. 129v ruled, otherwise blank.

[Item 5 occupies quires XVII-XXII](fols. 130r-183v)

Office of the Dead, Carmelite(?) Use; Vespers lacking Ps. 129:3–8 and Ps. 137:1–8 (from '... quis sustinebit ||' to '[despi]||cias. Requiem. ...') due to the loss of two leaves after fol. 133; also lacking part of the Magnificat and Ps. 145:1–5 (from '... Esurientes imple-||' [i.e. Luke 1:35] to '[ad]||iutor eius. spes eius ...') due to the loss of a leaf after fol. 134; Matins lacking Ps. 26:4–8 (from '... ego sperabo. ||' to '|| domine requiram. ...'), Ps. 39:4–9 (from '... gressus meos. ||' to '|| uolui et legem ...'), Pss. 40:14–41:6 (from '... fiat fiat. Re||' to '[confite]||bor illi salutare ...') due to the loss of single leaves after fols. 153, 158, and 162, respectively; (the responses of the nine lessons are Ottosen, Office of the Dead, numbers 14,72,24; 32,57,28; 68,82,38: he assigns books with this series to a wide variety of places, mostly French, but also Sarum and the Carmelite Order, which is the most likely in the present context).

[Item 6 occupies quire XXIII] (fols. 184r-195v)

Calendar, very sparse, major feasts in red, none of them local; each month headed by a note on the length of the calendar and lunar month; feasts in brown ink include Fortunatus (6 Mar. [sic]), Romanus (31 Mar. [sic]; perhaps the roman martyr who d. 258, usually venerated on 9 Aug., a relic of whose arm was in Arezzo cathedral; the year '258' was added in pencil in the 18th/19th-century next to his name), Antony of Padua (13 June), Donatus of Arrezzo (7 Aug.), Antoninus of ?Florence (2 Sept.-the usual date for different saints of the same name; Antoninus of Florence died on 2 May), Francis (4 Oct.), Reparata (8 Oct.), and Gallus (16 Oct.).

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: KL Februarius habet(Calendar, now fol. 185)
Secundo Folio: iubilemus deo(text, fol. 2)
Form: codex
Support: Parchment; the lower margin of fol. 158 cut away.
Extent: i (paper) + 196 + ii (paper).
Dimensions (leaf): 137–9 × 91–4 mm.
(the calendar somewhat smaller).
Dimensions (ruled): 68–9 × 41–2 mm.
Dimensions (written): 66 × 41 mm.
Foliation: Foliated in modern pencil: i, 1–41a, 41b-197.


Mostly in quires of 10 leaves, but with numerous leaves missing: I10–2 (4th & 7th leaves, a bifolium, missing, after fols. 3 & 5) (fols. 1–8), II-VII10 (fols. 9–67), VIII10–6 (3rd to 8th leaves missing, after fol. 69) (fols. 68–71), IX10–1 (6th leaf missing after fol. 76) (fols. 72–80) | X10 (fols. 81–90), XI6–1 (5th leaf missing after fol. 94; this whole gathering belongs after fol. 106) (fols. 91–95), XII10 (fols. 96–105), XIII10+1–6 (the 2nd to 5th, and 7th leaves of the original quire are now fols. 91–95; the last leaf is an original addition, fol. 108) (fols. 106–108) | XIV10–3 (5th, 6th, and 9th leaves missing, after fols. 112 and 114) (fols. 109–115), XV10–4 (1st, 2nd, 4th, & 9th leaves missing, after fols. 115, 116, & 120) (fols. 116–121), XVI8 (fols. 122–129) | XVII10–3 (5th, 6th, & 8th leaves missing, after fols. 133 & 134) (fols. 130–136), XVIII10 (fols. 137–146), XIX10–1 (8th leaf missing, after fol. 153) (fols. 147–155), XX10–2 (4th & 9th leaves missing, after fols. 158 & 162, respectively) (fols. 156–163), XXI-XXII10 (fols. 164–183) | XXIII12 (fols. 184–195); horizontal CATCHWORDS are in the centre of the lower margin, between dots or short dashes, except quires containing the end of a major textual unit (i.e. quires IX, XIII, XVI, XXII, XXIII) early (original?) LEAF SIGNATURES survive in most quires, taking the form e.g. [v1], 'v2' - 'v5', 'v6+' (quire XII, fols. 96–105), the letters of the alphabet are in the order [a]-i, t-[w/x], q-s, and k-p, indicating the original sequence of the main texts (see under Text); 19th(?)-century QUIRE NUMBERS in pencil, in arabic numerals, in the centre of the lower margin on the first recto of each quire, according to the present (incorrect) sequence of the quires.


14 lines ruled partly in pale grey-blue ink (quires I-VIII, XIV-XX), and partly in pale brown (the remainder), between single vertical bounding lines extending the full height of the page, 13 lines of text per page (the calendar with 18 ruled lines, for 17 lines of text per page; with five verticals ruled in leadpoint, all extending the full height of the page); single PRICKINGS are present in the fore-edge margin, c.4–5 mm below the bottom ruled line.


Written in a rounded gothic bookhand, in two sizes of script according to liturgical function


Headings in red, guides to rubrics and coloured initials in a tiny cursive script; capitals touched in pale yellow wash.

Four seven-line historiated initials; each below a coloured panel with the heading of the text, mostly in square capitals of humanistic style; and surrounded by a four-sided border containing further scenes in panels framed in gold:(fol. 1r) Hours of the Virgin. Initial D[omine]: the Virgin and Child, half-length; a bird on the Virgin's hand; the upper border with putti flanking the Redeemer, and seraphim at the corners; the lower border with two putti flanking a coat of arms (see under Provenance), with a vase of flowers and an angel at the corners; the right border with a deer lying on the ground, with a putto above and below; with some flaking and rubbing (Pächt & Alexander, 2, pl. XXIX no. 325a).(fol. 81r) Hours of the Cross. Initial D[omine]: the Man of Sorrows, standing in the tomb; the upper border with two putti holding the flaming 'yhs' roundel of St. Bernardino of Siena; the lower border with Christ on the Cross in a landscape, bleeding profusely; the right border with Mary Magdalene mourning, and further putti; with some smudging. (fol. 109r) Penitential Psalms. Initial D[omine]: King David playing the psaltery, held at his chest; the borders with several putti; the lower border with David beheading Goliath; the right border with a deer lying on the ground. (fol. 130r) Office of the Dead. Initial D[ilexi]: a half-length skeleton holding a scythe (the silver blade oxidised); the borders with several skulls and putti, and four other figures, two of them each holding a skull, another holding a scroll; the border in a different style to the others, having lush acanthus foliage, without gilt framing, but with individual gilt-framed panels for the figures and one skull.

Four-line painted foliate initials with burnished and painted gold, at the start of each hour from Prime to Compline in the Hours of the Virgin (fols. 29r, 35r, 41ar, 45r, 50v, 61r); similar three-line initials to the same hours in the Hours of the Cross (fols. 92r, 98r, 100v, 103r, 105v); three-line initials in gold with blue penwork, or blue with red penwork, respectively, to Lauds of the Hours of the Virgin and the Cross (fols. 13v, 90r); two-line initials alternately gold with blue penwork, or blue with red penwork, to psalms, lessons, KL monograms in the calendar, etc.; one-line initials alternately in gold or blue, to verses and other minor textual divisions.

The illumination is attributed by Garzelli to Mariano del Buono di Jacopo (1433–1504?) (on whom see Levi d'Ancona, Miniatura e miniatori a Firenze, 175–81; and Garzelli, 'Le immagini ...', I: 189–215).


Sewn on three cords, with pink silk endbands; bound in brown leather with gilt tooling over pasteboards, almost entirely obscured by 19th(?)-century red velvet; the spine flat; the pastedowns, and the first and last flyleaves, are lined with pink silk; the last flyleaf (fol. 197) with a large watermark 'h'; the edges of the leaves gilt and gauffered. Boxed, using funds provided by the Friends of the Bodleian, 1994.


Origin: Italian, Florence ; 15th century, late

Provenance and Acquisition

A member of the Florentine Bellacci family, with Carmelite links: with their(?) coat of arms (fol. 1r): vert, a bend argent (now oxidized to black), with three uncertain five-pointed objects gules, the shield within a wreath held by two putti (Pächt & Alexander, 2, pl. XXIX no. 325a); this matches the Bellacci arms if the five-pointed objects were intended to represent cinquefoils (see Michel Popoff, Florence (1302–1700) (Répertoires d'héraldique italienne: Paris, 1991), 163 no. 467; cf. 48 no. D 301), or roses (Rietstap, Armorial général, I, 156, and Planches, I, pl. CLXVII; Crollalanza, Dizionario storico-blasonico, I, 108; Angelo M. G. Scorza, Enciclopedia araldica italiana (Genoa, [1953?-]), IV, 112; also illustrated as such in MS. Ital. d. 25, fol. 105v). The Use of the Office of the Dead is most probably Carmelite (see under Text).

Adolphe Labitte, 19th-century Paris bookseller: the lower silk pastedown-lining inscribed in brown ink 'Baa' 'Uss' separated by a horizontal line, presumably his pricecode (cf. MS. Buchanan e. 5, fol. 159r, and MS. Buchanan e. 14 fol. 72r).

? Thomas Buchanan (d. 1864): perhaps bought with MS. Buchanan e. 5 and [pr. bk.] Buchanan e.136 in Paris in October 1857.

John Buchanan: inscribed in pencil with the 'Descriptive list' number, '7.', in the top left corner of fol. i verso.

Rt. Hon. T. R. Buchanan (1846–1911)

Given to the Bodleian by his widow, Mrs. E. O. Buchanan, in 1939, when it was accessioned as MS. Lat. liturg. e. 28; re-referenced as MS. Buchanan e. 7 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 (2 images from 35mm slides)


    Printed descriptions:

    S. J. P. van Dijk, Latin Liturgical Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, vol. 4: Books of Hours (typescript, 1957), p. 254

Last Substantive Revision

2017-07-01: First online publication.