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Detailed record for Royal 18 A VI

ff. 1-63 
Title Medical treatises and recipes
 
ff. 64-87 
Title Agnus castus, a herbal (imperfect)
 
ff. 88-103 
Title Recipes, charm for an amulet
 
Origin England
Date 15th -16th century
Language Middle English and Latin
Script Gothic cursive
Decoration 6 full-page anatomical and bloodletting diagrams of the human body in black ink, one accented by blue pigment (ff. 32-34v). 3 urine diagram wheels in black ink, urine painted in colours (ff. 27-28). Zoomorphic line fillers in purple ink (f. 8r). Marginal drawings throughout. Large decorated initial in red (f. 35). Small decorated initials in red throughout. Rubrics in red throughout.
Dimensions in mm 210 x 140
Official foliation ff. 103 (+ 2 unfoliated modern paper flyleaves at the beginning and at the end).
Form Paper and parchment codex
Binding Post-1600. Dark red leather imprinted with the royal coat of arms of George II on the front and back covers.
Provenance John Lumley, 1st baron Lumley (b. c. 1533, d. 1609), collector and conspirator: inscribed with his name (f. 1r); listed in the 1609 catalogue of his collection, no. 2311 (see The Lumley Library (1956), p. 258); his library acquired by Henry, prince of Wales.
Henry Frederick, prince of Wales (b. 1594, d. 1612), eldest child of James I: his collection became part of the Royal Library.
Presented to the British Museum by George II in 1757 as part of the Old Royal Library.
Notes This manuscript contains medical, herbal, obstetrical and gynaecological treatises and recipes in a variety of hands, dating from the beginning of the 15th century to the 16th century, predominantly in Middle English.
For detailed description of the contents, see the Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue http://searcharchives.bl.uk.
The handwriting on the pages surrounding the urine and anatomical diagrams has been dated to the late-15th century, and the diagrams themselves, given the degree of facial modelling, appear to be of the same date (see Warner and Gibson, Catalogue of Royal Manuscripts (1921), vol. II (2), p. 264).
Ff. 64r-87v were originally two gatherings of 12 leaves, with outer and inner leaves of parchment: ff. 64, 69, 70, 76, 82 and 87 are parchment. Other copies of the Agnus castus (both with additional entries) are in Additional MS 4698 and Arundel MS 272.
Select bibliography George F. Warner and Julius P. Gilson, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts in the Old Royal and King's Collections, 4 vols. (London: The British Museum, 1921), II (2), p. 264.

Eleanour Sinclair Rohde, The Old English Herbals (London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1922), pp. 197, 200.

Carleton F. Brown and Rossell Hope Robbins, The Index of Middle English Verse (New York: Printed for the Index Society by Columbia University Press, 1943), no. 1170.

Agnus Castus, A Middle English Herbal Reconstructed from Various Manuscripts, ed. with introduction by Gösta Brodin, Essays and Studies on English Language and Literature, 6 (Upsala: Lundequistska Bokhandeln, 1950), p. 87.

Kenneth G. Wilson, 'Five Fugitive Pieces of Fifteenth-Century Secular Verse', Modern Language Notes, 69 (1954), 18-22 (p. 22).

The Lumley Library: The Catalogue of 1609, ed. by Sears Jayne and Francis R. Johnson (London: British Museum, 1956), p. 258.

Reginald Thorne Davies, Medieval English Lyrics: A Critical Anthology (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1964), p. 219.

Loren MacKinney and Thomas Herndon, Medical Illustrations in Medieval Manuscripts, Wellcome Historical Medical Library, New Series, 5 (London: Wellcome Historical Medical Library, 1965), no. 86.60.

Beryl Rowland, Medieval Woman's Guide to Health: The First English Gynecological Handbook (Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 1981), pp. 25, 47.

Monica H. Green, 'Obstetrical and Gynecological Texts in Middle English', Studies in the Age of Chaucer, 14 (1992), 53-88 (pp. 53, 60, 78-79).

Women’s Writing in Middle English, ed. by Alexandra Barratt (London: Longman, 1992), p. 290.

Rosemary Greentree, The Middle English Lyric and Short Poem (Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer, 2001), pp. 150-51.

Julia Boffey and A. S. G. Edwards, A New Index of Middle English Verse (London: The British Library, 2005), no. 1170.

John C. Hirsh, Medieval Lyric: Middle English Lyrics, Ballads, and Carols (Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2005), p. 115.

Monica H. Green and Linne R. Mooney, 'The Sickness of Women', in Sex, Aging, and Death in a Medieval Medical Compendium: Trinity College Cambridge MS R.14.52, Its Texts, Language, and Scribe, ed. by M. Teresa Tavormina, 2 vols (Tempe: Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2006), II, pp. 455-568 (p. 457).

Daniel Wakelin, Scribal Correction and Literary Craft: English Manuscripts 1375-1510 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014), pp. 146, 148.

'He that will be a lover in every wise (no. 1906)', The Digital Index of Middle English Verse: An Open-Access, Digital Edition of the Index of Middle English Verse, ed. and compiled by Linne R. Mooney and others. DOI: http://www.dimev.net/record.php?recID=1906#wit-1906-1 [Accessed 26 April 2017.]


Images

ff. 1-63
Medical treatises and recipes
* * *
 
Urine flasks

f. 27
Urine flasks
Urine flasks

f. 27v
Urine flasks
Urine flasks

f. 28
Urine flasks
 
Bloodletting points

f. 32
Bloodletting points
Bloodletting points

f. 32v
Bloodletting points
Vein/artery figure

f. 33
Vein/artery figure
 
Vein/artery figure

f. 33v
Vein/artery figure
Organs of the abdomen and thorax

f. 34
Organs of the abdomen and thorax
Skeleton

f. 34v
Skeleton
 

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