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Thomas Becket. Verse manuscripts

Reference code
Thomas Becket. Verse manuscripts
Late 12th and early 13th century
Level of description
Extent and format
Vellum; ff. 6. Duodecimo (much trimmed). Half leather, brown (modern). Theological notes, Latin, written sideways in the margins of fols. 3, 4v, 15th-16th century, include the names 'lathbery', fol. 3, 'loftus profess. sacre paoie ...' (cf. A. B. Emden, A Biographical Register of the University of Cambridge (1963), 371), and I. Walles, fol. 4v. Slightly later entry 'Henry Curteson de newarke', fol. 4v. The fragments were part of a small collection of binders' waste given to Henry Charles Coote, FSA, in 1881, by James Fawckner Nickolls (Librarian of Bristol Free Library); see SAL/MS/708 for the remainder.
Scope and content
Fragments of two manuscripts of the verse life of St Thomas Becket by Guernes de Pont Sainte Maxence; late 12th century, and early 13th century. French. Consisting of:- (1) Two bifolia from the second version of Guernes' life, corresponding, with a few insignificant variations, to lines 1-42, 365-406, 991-1078 of the edition by E. Walberg, La Vie de saint Thomas le Martyr (Lund, 1922). Written in an early 13th century hand. fols. 1-4v;- (2) One bifolium from the otherwise lost first version of Guernes' life showing considerable divergence from the text published by Walberg. See I. Short, 'An early draft of Guernes' Vie de Saint Thomas Becket', Medium Aevum, 46, no. 1 (1977), 20-34, where this fragment is published and collated. Written in an earlier hand, probably late 12th century. fols. 5-6v. One four-line initial in red, decorated with green, fol. 1, and small initials in red and, occasionally, green in both fragments. Ker, MMBL, I (1969), 315.
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