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

Christ Church MS. 111

Vulgate Bible; England or France, s. xiii2


Language(s): Latin

Fols 1ra-727vb
Incipit: Frater Ambrosius
Explicit: familiar||
Incipit: [fol. 2ra] Alii adducto supercilio grandia uerba tritinantes [sic] inter mulierculas de sacris litteris
Rubric: [fol. 5rb] Incipit liber Genesis
Incipit: In principio creauit deus celum et terram
Rubric: [fol. 589rb] Prologus in euangelium secundum Matheum
Incipit: Matheus ex iudea qui et leui sicut in ordine primus
Rubric: [fol. 589va] Incipit euangelium secundum Matheum
Incipit: Liber generationis ihesu cristi filij dauid filij abraham
Explicit: deseruientes ⟨sperant⟩ deuenire De qua ⟨spe⟩ accusor a iudeis ..... Quis incredibi||
Vulgate Bible

Fol. 1 is a mere stub so continuous prose begins in the middle of ch. 6 of Jerome’s general prologue; the explicit, very indistinct and rubbed, is Acts 26:8, so that the Catholic Epistles and Apocalypse are completely absent. Also lost through removal of leaves are sections of Judges and I Kings, any prologue to and the opening of Proverbs, as well as a section of Ecclesiasticus, a large portion of Ezekiel, part of Luke and further sections of Acts. The text as presented diverges from the ‘usual order’ described by Ker, MMBL, 1:96–97 by not containing the Prayer of Manasses, III Ezra or the Psalms, and by Colossians preceding I and II Thessalonians. There are also deviations from Ker’s ‘common set’ of prologues; some are absent (to II Chronicles, Ecclesiastes, Wisdom, Stegmüller, Bibl. 515 and 513 to Amos, Stegmüller, Bibl. 547 and 553 to I Maccabees, and Stegmüller, Bibl. 589 to Matthew), while in other cases, non-standard prologues appear (to Job, several of the Minor Prophets, the Gospels and the Pauline Epistles).

The contents are thus: [fol. 1ra-5ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 284, incomplete, followed by Stegmüller, Bibl. 285, [fol. 5rb-39ra] Genesis, [fol. 39ra-66va] Exodus, [fol. 66va-85vb] Leviticus, [fol. 85vb-113vb] Numbers, [fol. 114ra-138va] Deuteronomy, [fol. 138va-139rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 311, [fol. 139rb-156ra] Joshua, [fol. 156ra-172rb] Judges, incomplete through loss of leaf after fol. 156 with 1:35–3:17 now absent, [fol. 172va-174vb] Ruth, [fol. 174vb-176ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 323, [fol. 176ra-196ra] I Kings, incomplete through loss of two leaves after fol. 190 with 20:37–23:28 now absent, [fol. 196rb-213vb] II Kings, [fol. 213vb-235rb] III Kings, [fol. 235rb-255vb] IV Kings, [fol. 255vb-256rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 328, [fol. 256rb-275ra] I Chronicles, [fol. 275ra-298rb] II Chronicles, [fol. 298rb-299ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 330, [fol. 299ra-305rb] I Ezra, [fol. 305rb-314va] Nehemiah (II Ezra), with title but chapter numbering continuing from previous book, [fol. 314va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 332, [fol. 314vb-321ra] Tobit, [fol. 321ra-rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 335, [fol. 321rb-329vb] Judith, [fol. 329vb-330ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 341 and 343, [fol. 330ra-338ra] Esther, [fol. 338ra-339rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 344 and 350 (rather than Stegmüller, Bibl. 357), [fol. 339rb-356vb] Job, [fol. 357ra-369ra] Proverbs, acephalous, starting at 2:12, [fol. 369rb-373vb] Ecclesiastes, [fol. 373vb-376ra] Song of Songs, [fol. 376ra-385rb] Wisdom, [fol. 385rb-409vb] Ecclesiasticus, incomplete through loss of leaf after fol. 392 with 16:18–18:19 now absent, [fol. 409vb-410rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 482, [fol. 410rb-440va] Isaiah, [fol. 440va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 487, [fol. 440vb-476vb] Jeremiah, [fol. 476vb-479vb] Lamentations, [fol. 479vb-480ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 491, [fol. 480ra-483rb] Baruch, [fol. 483rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 491, [fol. 483va-511ra] Ezekiel, incomplete with five leaves containing 11:13–20:10 roughly torn out after fol. 488, [fol. 511ra-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 494, [fol. 511vb-525ra] Daniel, [fol. 525ra-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 500 and 507, [fol. 525va-529va] Hosea, [fol. 529va-530rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 511, 510, an argumentum opening ‘Johel qui interpretatur Dominus Deus...’ and Stegmüller, Bibl. 509, all as one block of text, [fol. 530rb-532ra] Joel, [fol. 532ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 512, [fol. 532ra-535rb] Amos, [fol. 535rb-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 519, 517 and 516, [fol. 535vb-536rb] Obadiah, [fol. 536rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 524 and 521, [fol. 536va-537vb] Jonah, [fol. 537vb-538ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 526, [fol. 538ra-540va] Micah, [fol. 540va-541ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 528 and 527, [fol. 541ra-542ra] Nahum, [fol. 542ra-rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 530 and 529, [fol. 542rb-543vb] Habakkuk, [fol. 543vb-544ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 534 and 532, [fol. 544ra-545va] Zephaniah, [fol. 545va-546ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 539 and 535, [fol. 546ra-547ra] Haggai, ]fol. 547ra-rb] a prologue opening ‘Secundo anno Darii filii...’ (so not Stegmüller, Bibl. 539 which appears above as prologue to Haggai; for this text, cf. Cambridge: Corpus Christi College, MS. 2, fol. 336v) and Stegmüller, Bibl. 540, [fol. 547rb-552va] Zechariah, [fol. 552vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 543, [fol. 552vb-554rb] Malachi, [fol. 554va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 551, [fol. 554va-574rb] I Maccabees, [fol. 574rb-588rb] II Maccabees, [fol. 588rb-589va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 596 and 590, [fol. 589va-610va] Matthew, [fol. 610va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 607, [fol. 611vb-624ra] Mark, [fol. 624ra-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 620, [fol. 624va-646rb] Luke, [fol. 646rb-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 624, [fol. 646vb-664rb] John, [fol. 664rb-665ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 670 and 677, [fol. 665ra-674va] Romans, [fol. 674va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 685, [fol. 674va-681vb] I Corinthians, [fol. 681vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 699, [fol. 681vb-687rb] II Corinthians, [fol. 687rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 707, [fol. 687rb-690ra] Galatians, [fol. 690ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 715, [fol. 690ra-692vb] Ephesians, [fol. 692vb-693ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 728, [fol. 693ra-695ra] Philippians, [fol. 695ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 747, [fol. 695ra-696vb] I Thessalonians, [fol. 696vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 752, [fol. 697ra-vb] II Thessalonians, [fol. 697vb-698ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 736, [fol. 698ra-700ra] Colossians, [fol. 700ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 765, [fol. 700ra-702rb] I Timothy, [fol. 702rb-va] Stegmüller, Bibl. 772, [fol. 702va-704ra] II Timothy, [fol. 704ra] Stegmüller, Bibl. 780, [fol. 704rb-705ra] Titus, [fol. 705rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 783, [fol. 705rb-va] Philemon, [fol. 705va-vb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 793, [fol. 705vb-712ra] Hebrews, [fol. 712ra-rb] Stegmüller, Bibl. 640, [fol. 712rb-727vb] Acts, incomplete through loss of four leaves (one each after fol. 717 and 719 and two after 720) with 8:8 -9:17, 11:25–13:14, 14:9–16:37 now absent, and imperfect, text breaking at 26:8.

Physical Description

Secundo Folio: Alij adducto
Secundo Folio: tit Ionas (fol. 3, for ‘pertutit…’)
Secundo Folio: celum et (fol. 6)
Form: codex
Support: Parchment (FSOS)
Extent: Fols: iii + 728 (foliation misses a leaf between fol. 481 and 482) + viii (numbered fols 728–35). All but the last two front flyleaves are paper.
Dimensions (leaf): 123 × 82 mm.


Stab-bound over the original sewing and tightly bound making collation difficult. The basic structure appears to be quires of twenty: 120 (lacking first and second [fol. 1] only a scrap) 2–520 614 [ending with fol. 113, a production boundary between Numbers and Deuteronomy] | 7–820 920 (lacking fourth after fol. 156) 1020 (lacking penultimate and last after fol. 190) 11–1820 198 (lacking seventh after fol. 356) 2016 (with bifolium added at ?end as fol. 374–5) 2120 (lacking prepenultimate after fol. 392) 22–2420 2520 (with one added after last as fol. 475) 2618 (lacking fifteenth to last after fol. 488) 2720 (lacking first before fol. 489) 28–3320 3420 (lacking third after fol. 629) 35–3720 3820 (lacking twelfth after fol. 717, fifteenth after fol. 719, seventeenth and eighteenth after fol. 720) 39? [five leaves now visible followed by stubs of several others]. No medieval signatures or catchwords; intermittent signatures in one continuous series added in pencil presumably at point when spine was rebacked (s. xx1?).


Fol. 1 has been almost completely torn away; only the inner upper corner with the historiated initial remains. Scattered water damage, mainly affecting the upper edges and rendering some of the running titles, but not the text, illegible.


In double columns, each column 88 × 26–7 mm. , with 5mm between columns, in 41 lines to the column (below top line).

No prickings; bounded in brown and black ink, ruled in lead.


Written in gothic textura quadrata.

Punctuation by point, punctus elevatus, and punctus interrogativus.


Headings in red. At the openings of the books, six-line blue lombards with white highlighting and extensive red flourishing forming a border with blue touches. At the openings of chapters, two-line blue lombards with red flourishing. The text is divided by red-slashed capitals. Chapter numbers marginally in blue, preceded by a blue paraph with red flourishing. Running titles in blue lombards with red flourishing indicate the books.

There are two bits of illumination:

  • (a) Fol. 1 has been torn out, with most of what was likely a vinet; remaining is an historiated initial, seven lines, a blue champe with gold leaf depicting Jerome composing.
  • (b) Fol. 5: the full length of the page, seven roundels depicting the six days of creation, with, in bottom margin, a square in which is the crucifixion with Mary and John, with a dragon each side of the square.

See AT no. 207 (22), dating s. xiii med. and describing the book as ‘glossed’.


Brown leather over millboards, the spine rebacked (s. xxin?), but the boards early-modern, with small floral rolls, Gibson XIX, which is also Oldham MW.d.(10), the bottom compartment in its damaged state, so s. xvii1 (see D. Pearson, Oxford Bookbinding 1500–1640, Oxford Bibliographical Society, 3rd ser., 3 (Oxford, 2000), 69–70). Sewn on three thongs. Marks on both boards from two pairs of seatings for ribbon ties. Red speckled on all edges. A ChCh bookplate on the rear pastedown.


Origin: England or France ; s. xiii2

Provenance and Acquisition

The only early indication of provenance is the shelfmark of a previous library, ‘p.9’ (twice, fol. iiv). The author of that intervention may also be responsible for the very occasional marginal corrections (eg fol. 48, 70v, 254; s. xv?).

The identity of the donor to ChCh is not in doubt but there is some confusion over the year of gift. In the book itself, at fol. ii: ‘Liber Ædis Christi Oxon’ Ex ^dono^ Georgij Griffith eiusdem Ædis alumni Artium Mri Anno Dni 1628’. In the Donors’ Register, MS LR 1, p. 74ª, the gift of ‘Biblia Lat. Mss.’ is under the year 1633, but Griffith is described as ‘Ædis huius Alumnus in Sacro sancta Theo: Creatus DD.’, a degree he received on 4th November 1634. The note also records his giving a copy of ‘Justini Martyris opera omnia Graeco-lat. cum accessione Tatiani Athenagorae &c Parisijs Anno 163 [sic]’; if this is to be equated with the present OB.3.12, that volume states as its date of publication 1636. However, Griffith’s career suggests that the note in the manuscript itself is more likely to be accurate than the Donors’ Register, which, in relation to this codex, is probably a later recollection of an earlier gift. An Angelsey man, Griffith had been educated at Westminster School and matriculated at Christ Church in 1619, and graduated BA in 1623. He was an original scholar of Pembroke College in 1624; he also received the degrees MA and BD in 1626 and 1632 respectively. His clerical career saw him based in Wales. Licensed to preach in 1633, he was chaplain to John Owen, bishop of St Asaph, and, in addition to various Montgomeryshire rectorships, canon and archdeacon of St Asaph 1632–60, and then was himself bishop of St Asaph until his death, at the very end of 1666, aged 65 (AO, 609; J. Gwynfor Jones in Oxford DNB).

There is also an early-modern shelfmark painted on the fore-edge of the leaves: ‘Th B 3’. Assuming the pages of the manuscript were cropped at the point of binding, this note must postdate the addition of the present boards. Given they were made in Oxford (perhaps for Griffith himself), this leaves little opportunity for the volume to have entered another institutional library before donation to ChCh and, indeed, this shelfmark on the fore-edge would accord with the system used in 1665 catalogue of ChCh’s main library collection (on which see Introduction, ‘Age of Catalogues’). This volume, however, does not explicitly appear there and note that, while the main collection was chained, this binding was not, perhaps because of the volume’s small size (see Appendix I). If its first years in ChCh were spent in the main collection, it was soon moved: at the front pastedown, there is the shelfmark, cancelled, of the 1676 Archive Catalogue, ‘A.14’ (see Appendix I). Immediately below, in Edward Smallwell’s hand, is the New Library, ‘G.14’ (see Appendix IV).

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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