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Detailed record for Burney 97

Author Philes
Title De natura animalium
Origin France, Central (Paris)
Date between c. 1550 and 1569
Language Greek
Script Greek minuscule
Scribe Angelos Vergecios (d. 1569)
Decoration More than 80 coloured drawings of animals. Headings in gold (ff. 16, 32). Large initials in red and gold. Small initials in red.
Dimensions in mm 235 x 160 (160 x 80)
Official foliation ff. [i] + ii + 45 + [iii]
Collation Uncertain due to the binding technique and numerous losses.
Form Paper codex
Binding Pre-1600. French gilt red morocco; covers with a large oval centrepiece, the centre cut out and replaced with the French royal arms, crowned and with chains of the order of St.-Michel and St.-Esprit; corners restored; yellow-green and black silk ties.
Provenance Unidentified owner close to the French King, third quarter of the 16th century: as suggested by the combination of scribe, text, and distinctive binding.
The abbey of Moutier-St.-Jean, in the diocese of Dijon (formerly in the diocese of Langes), last quarter of the 17th century: inscribed 'Ex lib. monasterii St. joannis Reomensis' (ff. 1, 45v; cf. f. 31).
Unidentified French owner, 18th century: inscribed 'fournier'(?) (f. 2).
Unidentified French owner, 18th century: with a two-line note 'Phile de l'histoire des animaux, en vers jambiques de la main d'ange Vergece Cotte CCCXL sur le prisée.' (f. i verso).
Unidentified French owner, between 1800 and 1810: inscribed 'Angelo Vergetio, Cretois, etait Copiste en grec de Francois I. … un autre Exemplaire est au Cab(ine)t du Roi' (f. ii).
James Edwards (b. 1756, d. 1816), book collector and bookseller: his sale, 5 April 1815, lot 300, bought by Payne for £11.
Charles Burney (b. 1757, d. 1817), D.D., classical scholar.
Acquired by the British Museum as part of Burney’s library from his son Charles Parr Burney in 1818.
Notes This scribe also wrote several other copies of the same text between 1554 and 1568 (see Hofer and Cottrell 1954), and other manuscripts in the British Library (see Gamillscheg and Harlfinger 1981).
Marie-Pierre Laffitte, Reliures royals du département des Manuscrits (1515-1559), Conférences Léopold Delisle (Paris: Bibliothèque nationale de France, 2001), pp. 114-17 discusses 'Les manuscrits de Vergèce'. The design of the present binding is very similar to that illustrated in pl. 67, which is one of a group with a painted central medallion (missing from the present manuscript).
Select bibliography Catalogue of Manuscripts in The British Museum, New Series, 1 vol. in 2 parts (London: British Museum, 1834-1840), I, part II: The Burney Manuscripts (1840), p. 43.

Henri Omont, 'Notes sur les manuscrits grecs du British Museum', Bibliothèque de l'École des Chartes, 45 (1884), 314-350 (pp. 329, 335, and pp. 18 and 24 in the offprint, which is paginated 1-40).

Philip Hofer and G. W. Cottrell, Jr., 'Angelos Vergecios and the Bestiary of Manuel Phile', Harvard Library Bulletin, 8 (1954), 323-39 (pp. 331 n. 23, 333-34, pl. VIa).

Repertorium der griechischen Kopisten 800-1600, ed. by Ernst Gamillscheg and Dieter Harlfinger, Veröffentlichungen der Kommission für Byzantinistik, 3-1, ed. by Herbert Hunger (Vienna: Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1981- ), I: Handschriften aus Bibliotheken Grossbritanniens, 3 vols, no. 3.

Summary Catalogue of Greek Manuscripts (London: The British Library, 1999- ), I, pp. 61-62.
Last revised: 05 February 2005

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f. 18

f. 29

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