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

Christ Church MS. 109

Vulgate Bible; s. xiiimed or xiii2; ? France (perhaps England)


Language(s): Latin

1. Fols 1ra-396rb
Rubric: Incipit epistola sancti ieronimi presbiteri ad paulinum presbitervm de omnibus diuinis hystorie libris
Incipit: Frater ambrosius tua mihi munuscula perferrens
Incipit: || [fol. 4ra] ⟨domini dei⟩ deambulantis in paradiso
Rubric: [fol. 314va] Incipit prologus in matheum euangelistam
Incipit: Matheus ex iudea sicut in ordine primus ponitur
Rubric: [fol. 314vb] Incipit matheus euuangelista
Incipit: Liber generationis ihesu cristi filij dauid filij habraam
Explicit: uenio cito amen veni domine ihesu Gratia domini nostri ihesu cristi cum omnibus uobis Amen
Vulgate Bible

Close to Ker’s standard text (MMBL1:96–97), except it has no Prayer of Manasses (fol. 135rb), while including the Prayer of Ezra (preceding III Ezra (fol. 143va) and the Prayer of Solomon (fol. 220rab). It now lacks, owing to missing leaves, most of the prologue to the Pentateuch (Stegmüller, Bibl. 285) and the opening of Genesis, as well as the end of that book and opening of Exodus, the close of Deuteronomy and opening of Joshua, the close of Lamentations and opening of Baruch, and a large part of the Minor Prophets. The text appears, on at least some occasions, to have been paraphrased. Two of Ker’s standard prologues have been omitted: Stegmüller, Bibl. 327 to II Chronicles (added, as text 5, at the end of the manuscript) and Stegmüller, Bibl. 343 to Esther (fol. 156va). There is but a single substituted prologue (Hebrews), and only a single extra one (I Chronicles).

The contents are thus: [fol. 1ra-2vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 284 followed by 285 with title and five-line initial, the latter ending imperfectly at line 4, owing to removal of most of fol. 3 ¦¦ [fol. 4ra-16vb] Genesis, acephalous, opening at 3:8 and atelous, breaking at 48:22 ¦¦ [fol. 17ra-27vb] Exodus, acephalous, opening at 2:24, [fol. 28ra-35vb] Leviticus, [fol. 35vb-47va] Numbers, [fol. 47va-57vb] Deuteronomy, atelous, ending at 33:16 ¦¦ [fol. 58ra-64vb] Joshua, acephalous, without prologue and opening at 2:19, [fol. 64vb-72rb] Judges, [fol. 72rb-73rb] Ruth, [fol. 73va-74ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 323, [fol. 74ra-84va] I Kings, [fol. 84vb-93va] II Kings, [fol. 93va-107ra] III Kings, [fol. 107ra-113vb] IV Kings, [fol. 113vb-114rb] prologue ‘Dabretamin [sic] id est paralipomenon qui interpretatur uerba dierum ... evangelii questiones’ and Stegmüller, Bibl. 328, [fol. 114rb-123rb] I Chronicles, [fol. 123rb-135rb] II Chronicles, [fol. 135rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 330, [fol. 135va-138vb] I Ezra, [fol. 138vb-143va] Nehemiah (II Ezra), with initial but not title, [fol. 143va-vb] ‘Confessio hesdre’ (IV Ezra 8:20–36), [fol. 143vb-148va] III Ezra, [fol. 148va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 332, [fol. 148vb-151vb] Tobit, [fol. 151vb-152ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 335, [fol. 152ra-156va] Judith, [fol. 156va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 341, [fol. 156va-160vb] Esther, [fol. 160vb-161rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 344 and 357, [fol. 161rb-169rb] Job, [fol. 169rb-190rb] Psalms, [fol. 190rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 457, [fol. 190va-197va] Proverbs, [fol. 197va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 462, [fol. 197vb-200rb] Ecclesiastes, [fol. 200rb-201va] Song of Songs, [fol. 201va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 468, [fol. 201va-206va] Wisdom, [fol. 206va-220rb] Ecclesiasticus, [fol. 220rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 482, [fol. 220va-236rb] Isaiah, [fol. 236rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 487, [fol. 236va-255ra] Jeremiah, [fol. 255ra-vb] Lamentations, atelous, breaking at 2:21 ¦¦ [fol. 256ra-257rb] Baruch, acephalous, starting at 1:7, and wanting last chapter (see item 4 below), [fol. 257rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 492, [fol. 257va-275rb] Ezekiel, [fol. 275rb-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 494, [fol. 275vb-283ra] Daniel, [fol. 283ra-rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 500 and 507, [fol. 283rb-285vb] Hosea, [fol. 285vb-286ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 511 and 510, [fol. 286ra-287ra] Joel, [fol. 287ra-rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 515, 512 and 513, [fol. 287rb-288vb] Amos, atelous, breaking at 8:6 ¦¦ [fol. 289ra-289vb] Micah, acephalous, starting at 1:16 and atelous, breaking at 7:8 ¦¦ [fol. 290ra] Zephaniah, acephalous, starting at 3:11, [fol. 290ra-rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 538, [fol. 290rb-vb] Haggai, [fol. 290vb-291ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 539, [fol. 291ra-293vb] Zechariah, [fol. 293vb-294ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 543, [fol. 294ra-vb] Malachi, [fol. 294vb-295va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 547, 553 and 551, [fol. 295va-306vb] I Maccabees, [fol. 306vb-314va] II Maccabees, [fol. 314va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 590 and 589, [fol. 314vb-325va] Matthew, [fol. 325va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 607, [fol. 325vb-332va] Mark, [fol. 332va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 620, [fol. 332va-343va] Luke, [fol. 343va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 624, [fol. 343vb-351vb] John, [fol. 351vb-352ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 677, [fol. 352ra-356ra] Romans, [fol. 356ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 685, [fol. 356ra-360ra] I Corinthians, [fol. 360ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 699, [fol. 360ra-362va] II Corinthians, [fol. 362va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 707, [fol. 362vb-364ra] Galatians, [fol. 364ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 715, [fol. 364ra-365rb] Ephesians, [fol. 365rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 728, [fol. 365rb-366rb] Philippians, [fol. 366rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 736, [fol. 366rb-367rb] Colossians, [fol. 367rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 747, [fol. 367rb-368ra] I Thessalonians, [fol. 368rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 752, [fol. 368rb-vb] II Thessalonians, [fol. 368vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 765, [fol. 368vb-369vb] I Timothy, [fol. 369vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 772, [fol. 369vb-370va] II Timothy, [fol. 370va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 780, [fol. 370va-371ra] Titus, [fol. 371ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 783, [fol. 371ra-rb] Philemon, [fol. 371rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 799 (rather than 783), [fol. 371rb-374rb] Hebrews, [fol. 374va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 640, [fol. 374va-386rb] Acts, [fol. 386rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 809, [fol. 386rb-391ra] Catholic Epistles, [fol. 391ra-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 839, [fol. 391va-396rb] Apocalypse.

Fol. 396v was originally blank.

2. Fols 397ra-450va
Incipit: Aaz apprehendens uel apprehensio Aad testificans uel testimonium Aadhar deprecacio
Explicit: zosionis consilium uel consiliatrix zuzim consiliantes eos uel consiliatores eorum
Stephen Langton, Interpretationes nominum Hebraicorum

Sharpe no. 1669 [624–30 at 628], here unattributed (as in our MS. 110; cf MSS 105, 107). It is provided in the long version, Stegmüller, Bibl. 7709, ed. Bedae Opera (Cologne, 1688), 3:371–480.

3. Fols 450va-55vb
Incipit: In baculo meo transiui iordanem istum et nunc cum duabus turmis regredior gen. xxxii[10]. erat autem moyses vir iustissimus
Explicit: clamabant seraphim ulius[sic] ad alterum sanctus sanctus dominus deus exercituum Ysa. ix [sic Isaiah 63].

A series of c. 75 short prefaces for various feast days composed of biblical selections. Fol. 456 is blank, as is most of the preceding 455vb.

4. Fols 456va-57ra
Rubric: Incipit exemplum epistole eiusdem quam misit ieremias ad ductos captiuos in babilonem a rege babiloniorum
Incipit: Propter peccata que peccastis
Explicit: Nam erit longe ab obprobrijs
Final rubric: Explicit liber baruch

Baruch 6, omitted in the presentation of the biblical book at fol. 257rb. The scribe who copied the Bible writes this and the following item on an added bifolium.

5. Fol. 457va-vb

The prologue to II Chronicles (Stegmüller, Bibl. 327).

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: ipse te⟨rre⟩
Form: codex
Support: Parchment (FSOS)
Extent: Fols: ii + 457 + i (numbered fol. 458). All flyleaves parchment, that at the rear (fol. 458) pasted to a paper leaf conjoint with the back pastedown.
Dimensions (leaf): 195 × 128 mm.
(the bottom outer corner of fol. 381 was folded in before the last cropping and gives measurements of 200 × 135 mm)


18 (3 [fol. 3] a tiny fragment) 216 (ninth an unfoliated stub and lacking tenth [after fol. 16]) 310 414 510 614 (lacking second [after fol. 57]) 710 814 910 1014 1110 1214 1310 1414 1510 1614 17–1810 1914 2010 2114 2210 (lacking seventh [after fol. 255]) 2314 2410 2514 (lacking seventh and eighth [after fol. 288], tenth an unfoliated stub, and lacking eleventh and twelfth [before fol. 290]) 2610 2714 2810 2914 3010 3114 3210 3314 348 (with one added after last added as fol. 396) | 35–2612 3712 (lacking eighth [after fol. 427], apparently a cancel without text loss) 38–3912 404 (lacking last, with 3 [fol. 458 (ult.)] glued to paper flyleaf conjoint with pastedown). Catchwords visible only in the very final additional quires. From fol. 339, there are quire signatures roughly written in arabic numerals in an early modern hand; these signatures assume a basic quire structure of senions which is erroneous for the Bible proper but correct for the additional texts where, thus, these signatures are appear at the foot of the first recto.


The first thirty leaves have water damage to the top third of the page, often with significant fading of the text; there is also water damage to the lower corner of the last twenty leaves, after fol. 445, involving loss of text.


Written in double columns, with some variation in format; typically each column 142 × 40 mm. mm with 6 mm between columns, in 56 lines to the column (below top line).

No prickings visible; bounded and ruled in lead and brown crayon.


Written in gothic textura quadrata (although there are changes of pen and ink, and of format, a single hand for the Bible); and in gothic textura rotunda (texts 2 and 3).

Punctuation by point only.


Headings in red. At the openings of the books, champes, blue and violet with gold leaf, eight lines or so, with painted extensions, often the length of the page, usually with geometrical patterns and vinework dragons. At the openings of the prologues, smaller champes, gold leaf with blue and violet, without extensions (occasionally only red and blue lombards with flourishing of the same); the same champes appear at the Nocturns of the Psalter. Chapters marked by alternate red and blue lombards in the margin and red and blue paraphs next to the text, the latter with flourished extensions often to the length of the page and sometimes sprouting human heads (eg fol. 169 and 380). Running titles in alternate red and blue lombards identify the books. Textual corrections frequently in red boxes, most usually as an extra line below the text-block but also placed in shields or triangles in the outer margin and sometimes (eg fol. 37) written vertically next to the text.

At the openings of some books, the initials are historiated (usually six or seven lines high):

  • Fol. 1ra (the prologue): Jerome tonsured writing
  • Fol. 35vb (Numbers): God addressing the horned Moses
  • Fol. 47va (Deuteronomy): the horned Moses addressing the Hebrews
  • Fol. 74ra (I Kings): the death of Saul
  • Fol. 152ra (Judith): smiling Judith beheading the sleeping Holofernes
  • Fol. 161rb (Job): Job on the dunghill with his wife and a comforter
  • Fol. 169rb (Psalms): Jesus blessing with a book in left hand, with David harping below
  • Fol. 185va (Ps. 109): Dixit dominus domino meo, the Lord seated blessing the seated lord Fol. 190va (Proverbs): Solomon, crowned, chastising a tonsured and bare-chested figure
  • Fol. 201va (Wisdom): Solomon enthroned with sceptre
  • Fol. 220va (Isaiah): Isaiah being sawed in two
  • Fol. 236va (Jeremiah): Jeremiah, God’s hand pointing at him, as he sees the rod watching and the boiling cauldron (1:11 and 13)
  • Fol. 257va (Ezechiel): the prophet’s vision of the four beasts
  • Fol. 275vb (Daniel): Daniel in the lions’ den
  • Fol. 287rb (Amos): Amos prophesying
  • Fol. 314vb (Matthew): Matthew on a cushion writing

See AT no. 210 (22) and plate xi (fol. 236va), describing the manuscript as ‘British’ but early modern provenance would suggest that the initials might be French work.


Yellowish brown speckled leather over millboards, s. xvii, a gold-stamped armorial at the centre of both boards – a lion rampant dexter within a plaque surmounted by a crown, those of Nicolas-Joseph Foucault (as identified by AT). Sewn on five thongs. In the upper spine compartment, on a red leather tab in gilt ‘Biblia sacra MS’. Pastedowns are modern paper, a ChCh bookplate on the front pastedown.


Origin: France (?) (perhaps England); s. xiiimed or xiii2

Provenance and Acquisition

The back pastedown has a large ‘A’ (?s. xvii), perhaps a shelfmark in an earlier collection. The earliest definite ascription to an owner is ‘Pour monsieur foucaut Cete Bibble de sept cents ans secundum Lucam ie la done Au ilus zele des intandans qui serue auiourduy la Corone’ (s. xviiex), with an added note ‘In the Year 1728 I bought this Book, and the Note above was then in it’ (presumably an owner preceding the donor to the College; fol. iiv). For the intendant, archaeologist and book-collector Nicolas-Joseph Foucault (1643–1721), see Leopold Delisle, Le cabinet des manuscrits de la Bibliothèque Imperiale, 3 vols (Paris, 1868–81), 1:270–74. On the dispersal of his rich and large collection among English collectors, see Paul Quarrie, ‘The Scientific Library of the Earls of Macclesfield’, Notes and Records of the Royal Society of London, 60 (2006), pp. 5–24 at pp. 17–18; there are also wise words in Keith Busby et al. ed., Les Manuscritss de / The Manuscripts of Chrétien de Troyes, 2 vols (Amsterdam, 1993), ii, pp. 204 -205. It appears that the dispersal began before Foucault’s death and its English diaspora centred on the auction by Thomas Ballard of 20th February 1721, with volumes entering the collections of Robert Harley, earl of Oxford, and Thomas Parker, earl of Macclesfield, among others.

Part of another French inscription in different ink but probably the same hand, the top line mostly cut away, appears on fol. 396v: ‘... po... se..ne a monseur au vivolle curé de st ?sardos de dome. ordre au Fetablieme des bieas de Sie [.......] Bon hei.. monsieur’ (a further note in this script and ink appears cropped at upper left of fol. 362v; another hand on the pasted-over portion of fol. 458).

There is a bookseller’s price ‘2..2..–’ (fol. 1). The inscription of donation reads: ‘Donum Samuelis Rogers, M. A. Ædis Christi Alum. et Bibliothecarii 1784’ (fol. 1). Rogers (1732/3–1806), a Gloucestershire man, matriculated at Christ Church on 27th June 1753; he received degrees of BA, MA, and BD in 1757, 1760, and 1786 respectively, and was a Student until 1797. He was ordained deacon in 1757 and priest the following year; he was vicar of St Mary Magdalen, Oxford from 1763, and rector of Batsford (Glos.) following Edward Smallwell’s death in 1799; he ended his life as a prebendary of St Davids, dying in December 1806 (AOmod, 1221; CCEd). At ChCh, he was elected Librarian on 17th June 1779 and resigned on 1st December 1784: ChCh Archives, D&C i. b. 7, pp. 408 and 491. Perhaps, then, this manuscript was his gift to the Library on his retirement from that office. It is not recorded in the Donors’ Book, but appears in the catalogue of the New Library as B.16, with the entry added by Rogers himself (see Appendix IV). The partial shelfmark ‘16’ at the front pastedown of the manuscript accords with this entry.

Record Sources

Ralph Hanna and David Rundle, A Descriptive Catalogue of the Western Manuscripts, to c. 1600, in Christ Church, Oxford (Oxford, 2017).


For enquiries relating to this manuscript please contact Christ Church Library.

Last Substantive Revision

2017-07-01: First online publication.

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