Christ Church MS. 106
Vulgate Bible; England, s. xiiiex.
A series of indexes: the books of the Bible numbered are re-ordered alphabetically on fol. 1v; a table of epistle and gospel readings, for both the temporale and sanctorale, from fol. 2.
Supplied in anglicana formata, s. xv; red-slashed capitals introduce entries. Fol. 1, originally blank, has 11 eleven short lines of notes, s. xiii, followed by a series of topical indexes in anglicana, s. xv med., e.g. ‘De Maria virgine’ a list of Old Testament passages that might be construed as prophecies, e.g. ‘Exodus 37a’.
With the arrangement of the Old Testament diverging from Ker’s ‘usual order’(MMBL, 1:96-97): after IV Kings come the Prophets (with Baruch preceding Lamentations and Daniel at the end, following the Minor Prophets), followed by the Psalms, the Solomonic books, then Job, Tobit, the historical books I Chronicles-Nehemiah, Esther, Judith, and finally Maccabees. The Prayer of Solomon but not that of Manasses is provided. A section of I Chronicles is now absent because of removed leaves.
Of Ker’s ‘common set’ of prologues, only RB 357 to Job is entirely lacking, but many were not included in the original production and were added in the blank lower margins from an early date (to Baruch, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Jonah, I Maccabees and Matthew). There are also several extra prologues (to Isaiah, many of the Minor Prophets, Job, and Matthew). The text seems originally to have begun with Jerome’s second prologue (fol. 9rab), but the scribe has also provided the first prologue on an extra bifolium (fols 7-8), with most of fol. 8vb blank.
The contents as they now appear are thus: [fol. 7ra-8vb] RB 284; [fol. 9ra-rb] RB 285, [fol. 9rb-24rb] Genesis, [fol. 24va-36ra] Exodus, [fol. 36ra-44va] Leviticus, [fol. 44va-56rb] Numbers, [fol. 56va-66vb] Deuteronomy, [fol. 66vb-67ra] RB 311, [fol. 67ra-74rb] Joshua, [fol. 74rb-81vb] Judges, [fol. 82ra-83ra] Ruth, [fol. 83ra-va] RB 323, [fol. 83va-94rb] I Kings, [fol. 94va-102vb] II Kings, [fol. 102vb-112va] III Kings, [fol. 112va-121va] IV Kings, [fol. 122va-vb] RB 482, [fol. 122vb-135rb] Isaiah, [fol. 135rb-va] RB 487 without title, [fol. 135va-151ra] Jeremiah, [fol. 151ra-152vb] Baruch, with RB 491 added at foot of fol. 150vb in academic textura quadrata, s. xiii/xiv, [fol. 152vb-154rb] Lamentations, [fol. 154rb] RB 492, [fol. 154rb-168rb] Ezekiel, [fol. 168rb] RB 500, with RB 507 added on last lines and in bottom margin in textura quadrata roughly contemporary with the MS itself, [fol. 168va-170rb] Hosea, [fol. 170rb] RB 510 with RB 511 added in bottom margin in the hand of item (1), [fol. 170va-171ra] Joel, [fol. 171ra-rb] RB 515 and 512, with 513 added in bottom margin in the hand of item (1), [fol. 171rb-172vb] Amos, [fol. 172vb-173ra] RB 519 and 517 (presented as one prologue) and 516, [fol. 173ra-rb] Obadiah, [fol. 173rb] RB 524 and 522, with RB 521 added in bottom margin in hand of item (1), [fol. 173va-174ra] Jonah, [fol. 174ra] RB 526 and 535, [fol. 174ra-175ra] Micah, [fol. 175ra-rb] RB 528 and 527, [fol. 175rb-vb] Nahum, [fol. 175vb-176ra] RB 530 and 529, with cross-reference ‘Quere alium prologum abacuc in fine libri’ in hand of item (1) at foot of fol. 175vb, [fol. 176ra-va] Habakkuk, [fol. 176va-vb] RB 534 and 540, [fol. 176vb-177rb] Zephaniah, [fol. 177rb-va] RB 538 and 535, [fol. 177va-178ra] Haggai, [fol. 178ra] RB 539 and 540, [fol. 178rb-180rb] Zechariah, [fol. 180va] RB 545 and 543, [fol. 180va-181rb] Malachi, [fol. 181rb-va] RB 494, [fol. 181va-187rb] Daniel, with last lines of page blank, [fol. 187vb-203vb] Psalms (here called ‘liber ympnorum vel soliloquiorum’), [fol. 204ra] RB 457, [fol. 204ra-209vb] Proverbs, [fol. 209vb-211vb] Ecclesiastes, with cross-reference ‘Sequitur prologus ecclesiastes in fine libri’ in hand of item (1) added before opening of work at fol. 209vb, [fol. 211vb-212vb] Song of Songs, [fol. 212vb-217ra] Wisdom, preceded by cross-reference ‘Prologus super liber sapiencie in fine libri’, [fol. 217ra-228rb] Ecclesiasticus with Prayer of Solomon at end), preceded by cross-reference to prologue ‘in fine libri’, [fol. 228va-vb] RB 344, [fol. 228vb-236rb] Job, followed by RB 350 in the scribe’s hand, [fol. 236va] RB 336, [fol. 236va-239rb] Tobit, [fol. 239rb-va] RB 328 without title, [fol. 239va-245va] I Chronicles without title and lacking 8:6-15:29 owing to removed leaves, [fol. 245va-256ra] II Chronicles without title or Prayer of Manasses, [fol. 256ra-rb] RB 330 without title, [fol. 256rb-259ra] I Ezra without title, [fol. 259rb-263ra] Nehemiah (II Ezra), [fol. 263rb] RB 341 and 343 presented without break, [fol. 263rb-266vb] Esther, [fol. 267ra] RB 335, [fol. 267va-270vb] Judith, [fol. 270vb-280va] I Maccabees, [fol. 280va-287rb] II Maccabees, [fol. 287rb-vb] in originally blank space of this ‘intertestamentary’ leaf RB 547, 553 and 551 as well as 589 are provided in textura rotunda, s. xiv; [fol. 288ra-289ra] RB 595, 596 and 590, [fol. 289ra-298ra] Matthew, [fol. 298ra-rb] RB 607, [fol. 298rb-304ra] Mark, [fol. 304ra-rb] RB 620, [fol. 304rb-313rb] Luke, [fol. 313rb] RB 624, [fol. 313va-320vb] John, [fol. 320vb] RB 677, [fol. 320vb-324rb] Romans, [fol. 324rb] RB 685, [fol. 324rb-327vb] I Corinthians, [fol. 327vb] RB 699, [fol. 327vb-330ra] II Corinthians, [fol. 330ra] RB 707, [fol. 330ra-331ra] Galatians, [fol. 331ra] RB 715, [fol. 331rb-332rb] Ephesians, [fol. 332rb] RB 728, [fol. 332rb-333rb] Philippians, [fol. 333rb] RB 728, [fol. 333rb-334ra] Colossians, [fol. 334ra] RB 747, [fol. 334ra-vb] I Thessalonians, [fol. 334vb] RB 752, [fol. 334vb-335rb] II Thessalonians, [fol. 335rb] RB 765, [fol. 335rb-336rb] I Timothy, [fol. 336rb] RB 772, [fol. 336va-337rb] II Timothy, [fol. 337rb] RB 780, [fol. 337rb-vb] Titus, [fol. 337vb] RB 783, [fol. 337vb] Philemon, [fol. 338ra] RB 793, [fol. 338ra-340vb] Hebrews, [fol. 340vb-341ra] RB 640, [fol. 341ra-350rb] Acts, [fol. 350rb] RB 809, [fol. 350va-354ra] Catholic Epistles, [fol. 354ra-rb] RB 839, [fol. 354rb-358rb] Apocalypse.
The first five chapters of Wisdom (fols 212v-13v) have heavy marginal commentary, in a hand of s. xiii/xiv; more consistent but less dense is contemporary marginal commentary on all the Pauline epistles (fols 320v-40v). At fol. 121v-22, Hebrew words are provided, s. xiii.
A series of prologues, omitted in the original production: Stegmüller RB 327 to II Chron., RB 531 to Habbakuk, RB 462 to Ecclesiastes, RB 468 to Wisdom, and the (biblical) prologue to Ecclesiasticus, added in a hand resembling that of item 1 above. Fol. 359vb is blank but ruled.
III Ezra, also omitted in the original production, added in textura quadrata, perhaps the original scribe.
Writing area: in double columns, each column 205 × 50+ mm. , with 10mm between columns, in 60 lines to the column.
Very intermittent signs of full pricking in outer margin and of seven prick-holes at lower edge of leaves, in line with vertical double borders (with an added line dividing the central reservation); bounded and ruled in blue-black ink, with lines extending ragged into the margins.
In top margin, extra guide lines for the top of the running headers.
Written in gothic textura quadrata.
Punctuation by point only.
Headings in red. At the openings of the books, red and blue lombards of up to thirteen lines, with flourishing in both colours. At the openings of the chapters, somewhat erratically, one- or two-line alternate red and blue lombards with flourishing of the other colour. Chapter numbers marginally, usually in red, sometimes with the first figure in blue, many omitted and some supplied in text ink; in the Psalter, red arabic numerals and alternate red and blue one-line lombards at versals. Running titles for the books in alternate red and blue lombards, in the Old Testament widely spaced and using the full opening (some provided later by the correcting hand of item 1). The prologue to I Chronicles (fol. 239rb) has a ten-line painted initial S with vinework, dragon, bird, and dog. See AT no. 252 (26).
Brown leather over millboards, with a plain rectangular fillet and central border rectangle with fleur de lis corner-pieces, s.xviii1. Sewn on six thongs. In the top spine compartment ‘Biblia Latina MSS’. Pastedowns paper contemporaneous with the binding; pasted to the front pastedown, a rectangle of white leather from a previous binding, with a note on the seven sacraments (s. xv/xvi) and the cancelled seventeenth-century ChCh shelfmark (see provenance). A ChCh bookplate on verso the unnumbered first flyleaf.
Provenance and Acquisition
‘Iste liber constat Ricardo Wyot Olim Decano Capelle Ducis Gloucestrie’ (fol. 364; s. xv). Wyot is described as holding that position on 5th August 1436 when he was provided to a canonry of St. George’s Chapel, Windsor (Proceedings of the Privy Council, iv, 345; K. H. Vickers, Humphrey Duke of Gloucester (London, 1907), 388). He actively intervened in the volume: he added a brief listing of notable bits of scripture above the inscription just quoted, as well as item (1), arabic numerals in the Psalter and Biblical book numbers relating to his index at the top right of each folio (sometimes with running headers, eg fol. 178); in addition, he occasionally corrects the text: eg fol. 145v, 155, 156v, 161v, 164, 221v. It may be that the insertion of the catchwords reflects a rebinding undertaken at his request (the catchwords themselves, however, are not in his hand). It may also be that prior to that, the Bible had existed as two separate volumes: the final verso of the Psalms (fol. 203v) has rubbing consonant with it having been an outer leaf.
There is another late medieval indication of ownership: ‘Sum hollandi’ (fol. 1; s. xvex). At the same leaf, a possibly contemporaneous note ‘viijd’, crossed out, thus perhaps the price it cost Holland to buy.
The record of donation reads: ‘Liber Ædis cristi ex dono mrj Ricardi Lowe Armigerij, de Cawne, in agro Wiltonensj. August. 24o 1610’ (fol. 8v, lower margin). Richard Lowe (d. 1624) was educated at the Inns of Court, practised as a lawyer and was MP for Calne, Wiltshire in the Parliaments elected in 1597, 1601 and 1614: see now Andrew Thrush & John P. Ferris [ed.], The House of Commons 1604-1629, 6 vols (Cambridge, 2010), 5:171-72; cf. P. W. Hasler [ed.], The House of Commons 1558-1603, 3 vols (London, 1981), 2:494. There is no known connection between Lowe and ChCh, though as he was from Shropshire and may have gone to school at Shrewsbury, which had strong links with ChCh, that may provide a residual link. Alternatively, his London location may have brought him into contact with either his fellow lawyer, Otho Nicholson, or the city’s bishop, John King, both of whom encourage generosity to the House in the 1610s (see Introduction, ‘From the Restauratio ’).
On the leather rectangle from the medieval binding now pasted to the front pastedown, there is the ChCh shelfmark, cancelled, ‘B.4’, which accords with the entry in the 1676 Catalogue (see Appendix I). At both the recto and the verso of the first front flyleaf, Edward Smallwell writes the New Library shelfmark, ‘G.2’ (see Appendix IV).
For enquiries relating to this manuscript please contact Christ Church Library.
Last Substantive Revision
2017-07-01: First online publication.