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MSS. Duke Humfrey



Introduction

Humfrey, Duke of Gloucester (1390-1447) was the youngest brother of King Henry V. His major donations to the University of Oxford, made between 1439 and 1444, amounted to over 280 manuscripts, including classical and humanistic texts as well as Biblical, theological, legal, and medical texts relevant to the University curriculum. To house the collection a new library room was built over the Divinity School then under construction: the room opened in 1488 and still bears the name Duke Humfrey's Library. But by the middle of the 16th century the books had been dispersed and the room disfurbished, as a result partly of financial under-provision and partly of religious censorship; and it remained in this state until Sir Thomas Bodley's refoundation of the library at the end of the century. Of Humfrey's donations to Oxford, only about fifteen manuscripts are known to survive, including three in the Bodleian (which bear this shelfmark): see A. C. de la Mare and Stanley Gillam, Duke Humfrey's Library and the Divinity School 1488-1988 (exhibition catalogue, Bodleian Library, 1988).


Shelfmark MS. Duke Humfrey b. 1
Summary Catalogue no. 32386
Summary of contents John Capgrave, Commentary on Exodus.
Language Latin
Origin English
Date c. 1440
Material paper

Decoration
Good miniatures, fine border and historiated inital (defaced). Diagram. (P&A iii. 902)

Images
Catalogue image Vol. 6, p. 148
Catalogue image Vol. 6, p. 149
Manuscript image fol. 114r Cherubim holding 'propriatory' (cover) over Ark. Exodus xxv, 10-27
Bibliography
2001
Middle English poetry: texts and traditions. Essays in honour of Derek Pearsall, ed. A. J. Minnis (York Manuscripts Conferences: Proceedings Series, 5), York & Woodbridge, etc.: York Medieval Press, 2001, p. 276n.
1997
Anne Hudson, 'Visio Baleii: an early literary historian', in The Long Fifteenth Century: essays for Douglas Gray, eds. Helen Cooper & Sally Mapstone, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1997, pp. 313-329, at p. 324
Peter J. Lucas, From author to audience: John Capgrave and medieval publication, Dublin: University College Dublin Press, 1997, pp. 23, 30-2, 34-5, 48 n. 15, 57, 61-4, 72, 74, 285
1996
M. C. Seymour, John Capgrave (No. 11 in Authors of the Middle Ages, English Writers of the Late Middle Ages, vol. III, Nos. 7-11), Aldershot & Brookfield, Vermont: Variorum, 1996, pp. 195-256, at pp. 216 [16], 240-1 [40-1], 248 [48], 253 [53]
Kathleen L. Scott, Later Gothic Manuscripts 1390-1490 (A Survey of Manuscripts Illuminated in the British Isles, 6), 2 vols., London: Harvey Miller Publishers, 1996, I, pp. 66 n. 18, 69 n. 13; II, pp. 163, 219

Bodleian shelfmark: BDH = R. Pal.
1995
Peter J. Lucas, 'An author as copyist of his own work: John Capgrave OSA (1393-1464)', in New science out of old books: studies in manuscripts and early printed books in honour of A. I. Doyle (eds. Richard Beadle & A. J. Piper), Aldershot: Scolar Press, 1995, pp. 227-248, at p. 230
1992
The History of the University of Oxford, vol. II, Late Medieval Oxford, eds. J. I. Catto & Ralph Evans, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1992, p. xxxii [list of unprinted sources]
1988
Albinia C. de la Mare, 'Manuscripts given to the University of Oxford by Humfrey, duke of Gloucester', Bodleian Library Record, 13 no. 1 ( 1988), pp. 30-51

Shelfmark MS. Duke Humfrey d. 1
Summary Catalogue no. 2934
Summary of contents Pliny the Younger, Epistles.
Language Latin
Origin Italian, Milan
Date before Feb. 1443/4
Material parchment

Decoration
Good initials. (P&A ii. 697)

Images
Catalogue image Vol. 2 Part 1, p. 552
Manuscript image fol. 37r Opening text of Book IV of Pliny the Younger, Epistles.
Bibliography
1997
Cynthia M. Pyle, Milan and Lombardy in the Renaissance: essays in cultural history (Università degli Studi - Parma, Istituto di Filologia Moderna, Testi e Studi, Nuova serie, Studi 1), Rome: La Fenice Edizioni, 1997 [reprinted articles], p. 37
1991
David Rogers, The Bodleian Library and its treasures 1320-1700, Henley-on-Thames: Aidan Ellis, 1991

Bodleian shelfmark: BDH = R
1990
[Exh. Cat.], The Bodleian Library and its treasures ... September 17 - October 14, 1990, Tokyo: Tokyo Fuji Art Museum, 1990, no. 4 [fols. 49v-50r]

Shelfmark MS. Duke Humfrey d. 2
Summary Catalogue no. Not in SC (late accession): no description available
Summary of contents Palladius, De agricultura, verse translation (attrib. Thomas Norton) made for Humfrey, Duke of Gloucester.
Language English
Origin English
Date 1442-3(?) (after 1439, before 1447)
Material parchment

Decoration
Illuminated initials, one (fol. 1r) with the arms of Duke Humfrey, and penwork initials; translator's preface and epilogues written in a scheme of alternating colours.

Provenance

Humfrey, Duke of Gloucester (1390-1447), with his arms, and an inscription probably in his hand; inscribed 'William Hodgkin', 'Georg Hodgkin' and 'Fly:(?) Hodgkin', all probably 17th-century (fol. 119v); James West, M.P. (c. 1704-72), signed 'J. West 1767' (fol. ii r); sixth Earl Fitzwilliam, of Wentworth Woodhouse, by 1862; William Charles de Meuron, seventh Earl Fitzwilliam (d. 1943), with his bookplate and the Wentworth Woodhouse shelfmark 'Z.I.22'; allocated to the Bodleian in 1984 in lieu of capital transfer tax.
Manuscript image fol. cover Binding: portrait inscribed 'Jaqueline Dutchess of Bavaria countess of Holland, Zeeland and Hainault, wife to Humfrey Duke of Glocester 1427'.
Manuscript image fol. 1r Heading, De preceptis rei rustice capitulum primum, is followed by 8-line initial incorporating the arms of Duke Humfrey: C('onsideraunce is taken at prudence'). Duke Humfrey's arms, quarterly France and England, a bordure argent.
Bibliography
2001
Middle English poetry: texts and traditions. Essays in honour of Derek Pearsall, ed. A. J. Minnis (York Manuscripts Conferences: Proceedings Series, 5), York & Woodbridge, etc.: York Medieval Press, 2001, pp. 276-7, 278
1999
George R. Keiser, 'Practical books for the gentleman', in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, vol. III, 1400-1557, eds. Lotte Hellinga & J. B. Trapp, Cambridge 1999, pp. 470-494, at p. 484 and nn. 48, 50
SCWMSS archive: = REFS. CXIII.16 [copy of this article only]
1995
George R. Keiser, 'Serving the needs of readers: textual division in some late-medieval English texts', in New science out of old books: studies in manuscripts and early printed books in honour of A. I. Doyle (eds. Richard Beadle & A. J. Piper), Aldershot: Scolar Press, 1995, pp. 207-226, at pp. 209-10
Exh. Cat., Summer Exhibition of important recent accessions 19 June to 26 August 1995, Oxford: Bodleian Library, 1995, p. 7 no. 45
1985
A. C. de la Mare, 'Duke Humfrey's English Palladius (MS. Duke Humfrey d. 2)', Bodleian Library Record, 12, no. 1, Oct. 1985, 39-51, figs. 1-4 (fols. xviiiv-xixr, xxi v-1r, 53r, and upper cover of binding); a photographic facsimile is MS. Eng. poet. d. 27 (Summary Catalogue, no. 31502).


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Last Modified: 17 June 2015