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Detailed record for Harley 671

Title Treatises on Geomancy with a table of contents (ff. 3-5)
Origin England
Date 2nd half of the 15th century
Language English
Script Gothic hybrid
Decoration Very large initials in colours with foliate decoration. Large initials in red or blue. Paraphs in red or blue. Line-fillers in red and blue. Captials marked in yellow. Added sketch of an initial, perhaps originally part of a pattern book (f. 2v).
Dimensions in mm 200 x 145 (135 x 95)
Official foliation ff. 1* + 180 ( + 13* + 72* + 3 unfoliated paper flyleaves at the beginning and 4 at the end)
Form Paper codex with parchment flyleaves
Binding BM/BL in-house. Rebound in 1967.
Provenance Edward Stillingfleet (b. 1635, d. 1699), bishop of Worcester and theologian (see Wright 1972).
Edward Stillingfleet (b. 1661, d. 1708), physician and Church of England clergyman, son of the former; in 1707 acquired by Robert Harley (see Wright 1972).
The Harley Collection, formed by Robert Harley (b. 1661, d. 1724), 1st earl of Oxford and Mortimer, politician, and Edward Harley (b. 1689, d. 1741), 2nd earl of Oxford and Mortimer, book collector and patron of the arts.
Edward Harley bequeathed the library to his widow, Henrietta Cavendish, née Holles (b. 1694, d. 1755) during her lifetime and thereafter to their daughter, Margaret Cavendish Bentinck (b. 1715, d. 1785), duchess of Portland; the manuscripts were sold by the Countess and the Duchess in 1753 to the nation for £10,000 (a fraction of their contemporary value) under the Act of Parliament that also established the British Museum; the Harley manuscripts form one of the foundation collections of the British Library.
Notes ff. 1*, 180 are reused parchment leaves from another manuscript.
72* is a paper leaf with an inscription.
ff. 176-179 are paper leaves with dots arranged in various configurations.
For a full description of the contents, see the Harley Catalogue.
Select bibliography A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: Eyre and Strahan, 1808-12), I (1808), no. 671.

Rossel Hope Robbins, ‘English Almanacks of the Fifteenth Century’, Philological Quarterly, 18 (1939), 321-31 (p. 324, n. 19).

Cyril Ernest Wright, Fontes Harleiani: A Study of the Sources of the Harleian Collection of Manuscripts in the British Museum (London: British Museum, 1972), p. 316.

Kathleen L. Scott, Later Gothic Manuscripts 1390-1490, A Survey of Manuscripts Illuminated in the British Isles, 6, 2 vols (London: Harvey Miller, 1996), II, 254 [f. 2v].

* * *
Decorated initials

f. 2v
Decorated initials
Text page

f. 58
Text page

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