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Detailed record for Royal 19 D I

Title Historia de proeliis, translated in French as La vraie ystoire dou bon roi Alixandre, and other romances
Origin France, Central (Paris)
Date c. 1340 (after 1333)
Language French
Script Gothic
Scribe Jean de Senlis and others
Artists Jeanne de Montbaston
Decoration 2 large miniatures in colours and gold with foliate initials in colours and gold and full bar borders with heraldic devices and vine leaves (ff. 1, 58). 162 one or two- column miniatures in colours and gold, at the beginning of book or chapters, 124 of which are accompanied by preliminary sketches (e.g., ff. 11v-15v, 17v-19v, 39v, 40, etc). Foliate initials in colours and gold, or puzzle initials in red and blue with red and brown pen-flourishing, at the beginning of some books or chapters. Initials in blue with red pen-flourishing, or in red with brown pen-flourishing.
Dimensions in mm 425 x 310 (295 x 195)
Official foliation ff. 267 (+ 7 unfoliated modern paper flyleaves at the beginning and 2 at the end, and 4 unfoliated medieval parchment flyleaves at the end)
Collation i-v8 (ff. 1-40), vi6 (ff. 41-46), vii8 (ff. 47-54), viii3 (ff. 55-57), ix-xi8 (ff. 58-81), xii4 (ff. 82-85), xii-xviii8 (ff. 86-133), xix2 (ff. 134-135), xx-xxii8 (ff. 136-159), xxiii6 (ff. 160-165), xxiv8 (ff. 166-173), xxv4 (ff. 174-177), xxvi-xxix8 (ff. 178-209), xxx2 (ff. 210-211), xxxi-xxxvii8 (ff. 212-267).
Form Parchment codex
Binding BM/BL in-house.
Provenance Philip VI of Valois (b. 1293, d. 1350), king of France (1328-50), perhaps commissioned by him or for him, after 1333, and around the time of his proposed Crusade, c. 1334-37 (see Rouse 2000, pp. 244-47): three of the eight texts are the unique examples of the French translations by Jean de Vignay (b. 1280, d. c. 1340), translator working for Philip VI and Jeanne de Bourgogne; one of which, 'Le Directoire a faire le passage de la Terre Sainte', is addressed to the king, 'au tres noble prince / et seigneur mon seigneur phelippe roy de / france lan de n[ost]re seigneur mil ccc xxxii. / et fu translate en francois p[ar] iehan de vi/gnay. Lan mil ccc. xxxiii/ (f. 165v).
The Old Royal Library (the English Royal Library): perhaps to be identified with 'Le bon roy Alexandre' included in the list of books at Richmond Palace of 1535, no. 101; and in the catalogue of 1666 (f. 13v).
Presented to the British Museum by George II in 1757 as part of the Old Royal Library.
Notes Full digital coverage available for this manuscript: see Digitised Manuscripts at http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts.
Includes 8 works forming a compendium of the wonders of the East combined with crusading texts:
Historia de proeliis translated in French as La vraie ystoire dou bon roi Alixandre (ff.1-46);
Jehan le Nevelon (or le Venelais), La Venjance Alixandre in Old French verse (ff. 47-57);
Voyages of Marco Polo in a revised version attributed to Thibault de Cépoy, admiral of the fleet for Charles's of Valois projected crusade and Jean de Cépoy, admiral of the fleet for the projected crusade of Philip VI of France (ff. 58-135); Odoric de Pordenone, Merveilles de la terre d'outremer, written in 1330 and translated by Jean de Vignay in 1331 (ff. 136v-148);
John of Plano Carpini, Travels to the East in the abridgement of Vincent de Beauvais, Speculum Historiale 32, 2-66, in the unique French translation perhaps by Jean de Vignay (ff. 148v-165v);
Directorium ad faciendum passagium transmarinum of an anonymous Dominican, originally addressed to King Philip VI of France in 1332, and translated in French in 1333 by Jean de Vignay (a unique example of the translation) as Le Directoire a faire le passage de la Terre Sainte (ff. 165v-192v);
Primat of St Denis, Chronique in the unique translation of Jean de Vignay (ff. 192v-251v);
extracts from the Bible Historiale entitled in the colophon: 'Pluseurs bataiies des roys disrael encontre les Philistiens et Assyriens' (ff. 252v-267v).
According to Rouse 2000, written by 5 scribes (Hand I: quires i-viii; Hand II: quires ix-xii, xvii-xix, xxxvi-xxvii; Hand III to be identified with Jean de Senlis: quires xiii-xvi, xxxi-xxxv; Hand IV: quires xx-xxii, xxiii except f. 165v, xxvi-xxx; Hand V: quires xxiii, f. 165v, xxiv-xxv), and illuminated by two artists: Jeanne de Montbaston, widow of the Parisian libraire Richard de Montbaston (d. 1353), illuminator and libraire, from 1353 'Illuminatrix libri jurata universitatis' (quires i-iv, ix-xviii, xx-xxi, xxiii-xxix, xxxi-xxxvii) and another illuminator (quires v-viii).
Catchwords and bifolium signatures; instructions for rubrics (e.g., f. 168); a note informing about a number of quires 'xxxvii pestoi' (f. 167v).
The manuscript was probably used as a model for the text and illustrations of Marco Polo, Travels, in Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 264, ff. 218-271, added in England c. 1410, which in 1466 belonged to Richard Wydevill, lord Rivers, father-in-law of Edward IV (see Dutschke, 1998).
Select bibliography P. Meyer, Documents manuscrits de l’ancienne litte´rature de la France conserve´s dans les Bibliothe`ques de la Grande-Bretagne. Rapports a` M. le Ministre de l’Instruction Publique, (Extrait des Archives des Missions Scientifiques et Litte´raires, deuxie`me se´rie, tome 3-5) (Paris, 1871), pp. 16-30, 69-80.

Samuel Berger, La bible française au moyen âge (Paris: Champion, 1884), p. 391.

H. Omont, 'Les manuscrits français des rois d'Angleterre au château de Richmond', in Etudes romanes dédiés à Gaston Paris (Paris: É. Bouillon, 1891), pp. 1-13 (p. 11).

Campbell Dodgson, 'Alexander's Journey to the Sky: A Woodcut by Schäufelein', Burlington Magazine, 6 (1904-5), pp. 395-401 (p. 396, Pl. 1).

H. L. D. Ward and J. A. Herbert, Catalogue of Romances in the Department of Manuscripts in the British Museum, 3 vols (London: British Museum, 1883-1910), I, pp. 123, 143.

George F. Warner and Julius P. Gilson, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts in the Old Royal and King’s Collections, 4 vols (London: British Museum, 1921), II, pp. 339-41.

D. J. A. Ross, 'Methods of Book-Production in a XIVth Century French Miscellany (London, B. L., ms Royal 19. D. I.)', Scriptorium: Revue internationale des études relatives aux manuscrits 6 (1952), 63-75 (pp. 63-71).

D. J. A. Ross, 'Nectanebus in his Palace: A Problem of Alexander Iconography', Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 15 (1952) 67-87 (pp. 68-72, fig. 16b).

D. J. A. Ross, Alexander Historiatus: A Guide to medieval illustrated Alexander Literature (London: Warburg Institute, 1963), pp. 13, 30, 41, 55, 88 n. 63, 90 n. 124, 97 n. 263, 98 nn. 276 and 279.

D. J. A. Ross, 'Olympias and the Serpent: The Interpretation of a Baalbek Mosaic and the Date of the Illustrated Pseudo-Callisthenes', Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 26 (1963) 1-21 (pp. 6, 7, 8, n. 35, figs 1d, e).

Loren MacKinney, Medical Illustrations in Medieval Manuscripts, Wellcome Historical Medical Library, 5, 2 parts bound together (London: Wellcome Historical Medical Library, 1965), with Thomas Herndon, Part II, Medical Miniatures in Extant Manuscripts: A Checklist, no. 64.

D. J. A. Ross, Alexander and the Faithless Lady: A Submarine Adventure, An Inaugural lecture delivered at Birkbeck College, London, 7th November 1967 (London: Ruddock and Sons, 1967), p. 8, fig. 4.

Millard Meiss and Sharon Off, 'The Bookkeeping of Robinet d'Estampes and the Chronology of Jean de Berry's Manuscripts', The Art Bulletin, 53 (1971), 225-35 (p. 233).

David J. A. Ross, Studies in the Alexander Romance (London: Pindar, 1985), pp. 173, 175, 181, 259, 317-19, 344, 353, 364.

Jonathan J. G. Alexander, 'Preliminary Marginal Drawings in Medieval Manuscripts', in Artistes, artisans et production artistique au Moyen Age: Colloque international, ed. by. Xavier Barral i Altet, 3 vols (Paris: Picard, 1986-90), III: Fabrication et consommation de l'oeuvre, pp. 307-19 (pp. 312, 318).

Jonathan J. G. Alexander, Medieval Illuminators and their Methods of Work (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1992), pp. 60, 68, 185, figs 87, 111.

V. M. Schmidt, A Legend and its Image: The Aerial Flight of Alexander the Great in Medieval Art (Grotingen, 1995), cat. no. 44, pp. 184-85 [exhibition catalogue].

C. W. Dutschke, 'The Truth in the Book: The Marco Polo Texts in Royal 19.D.I and Bodley 264', Scriptorium: Revue internationale des études relatives aux manuscrits, 52 (1998) 278-99.

Richard H. Rouse and Mary A. Rouse, Manuscripts and Their Makers: Commercial Book Producers in Medieval Paris 1200-1500, 2 vols (Turnhout: Harvey Miller, 2000), I, pp. 212, 244-47, 250, 254, 380 n. 86, 390 n. 86, 391 n. 105; II, App. 9A.

The Libraries of King Henry VIII, ed. by J. P. Carley, Corpus of British Medieval Library Catalogues, 7 (London: The British Library, 2000), H1.91.

Pamela Porter, Medieval Warfare in Manuscripts (London: British Library, 2000), p. 52.

Tine Melis, ‘An Alexander Manuscript for a Powerful Patron (Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS. Bodl. 264)?’, in ’Als Ich Can’: Liber Amicorum in Memory of Professor Dr. Maurits Smeyers, ed. by Bert Cardon and others, 2 vols (Paris: Uitgeverij Peeters, 2002), pp. 961-81 (p. 972).

D. J. A. Ross and M. A. Stones, 'The Roman d'Alexandre in French Prose: Another Illustrated Manuscript from Champagne or Flanders c.1300', Scriptorium: Revue internationale des études relatives aux manuscrits, 56 (2002), 345-56 (p. 346).

Martine Meuwese, 'Inaccurate Instructions and Incorrect Interpretations: Errors and Deliberate Discrepancies in Illustrated prose Lancelot Manuscripts', Bibliographical Bulletin of the International Arthurian Society, 54 (2002), 319-44 (p. 332, n. 29).

Sophie Page, Magic in Medieval Manuscripts (London: British Library, 2004), pp. 10-11, 14, 19, pl. 7, 10, 18.

Mary and Richard Rouse, ‘Context and Reception: A Crusading Collection for Charles IV of France’, in Courtly Arts and the Art of Courtliness, Selected papers from the Eleventh Triennial Congress of the International Courtly Literature Society University of Wisconsin-Madison 2004, ed by Keith Busby and Christopher Kleinhenz (Cambridge: Brewer, 2006), pp. 105-78 (p. 106).

Maureen Quigley, 'Romantic Geography and the Crusades: British Library Royal ms. 19 D I', Peregrinations, 2.3 (2009), 53-76 [http://peregrinations.kenyon.edu/vol2_3/current/fa3.pdf] [accessed 17 July 2009].

Lieselotte E. Saurma-Jeltsch, 'Saracens: Opponents to the Body of Christianity', The Medieval History Journal, 13 (2010), 55-95 (pp. 60-62, 65, n., 85, 90).

Maud Pérez-Simon, Mise en roman, mise en image: Les manuscrits du Roman d'Alexandre en prose (Paris: Champion, 2011), pp. 438-40.

Scot McKendrick, John Lowden, and Kathleen Doyle, Royal Manuscripts: The Genius of Illumination (London: British Library, 2011), no. 91 [exhibition catalogue].


Images
* * *
 
Locations

f. 1
Locations
Nectanebus

ff. 1v-2
Nectanebus
Nectanebus and Olympias

f. 4v
Nectanebus and Olympias
 
Philip and Alexander

f. 5
Philip and Alexander
Death of Nectanebus

f. 5v
Death of Nectanebus
Death of Nectanebus

f. 5v
Death of Nectanebus
 
Bucephalus

f. 6
Bucephalus
Coronation of Alexander

f. 7
Coronation of Alexander
Philip and Alexander

ff. 7v-8
Philip and Alexander
 
Philip and Alexander

ff. 8v-9
Philip and Alexander
Alexander's army

ff. 9v-10
Alexander's army
Alexandria and Tyre

ff. 10v-11
Alexandria and Tyre
 
Alexander in Jerusalem

f. 11v
Alexander in Jerusalem
Darius

f. 12
Darius
Darius

f. 12
Darius
 
Alexander and Darius

ff. 12v-13
Alexander and Darius
Darius, Alexander and Olympias

ff. 13v-14
Darius, Alexander and Olympias
Darius and Alexander

ff. 14v-15
Darius and Alexander
 
Alexander and the Persians

f. 15v
Alexander and the Persians
Darius

f. 16v
Darius
Alexander, the Persians, and Darius

ff. 17v-18
Alexander, the Persians, and Darius
 
Darius

ff. 18v-19
Darius
Alexander attacking

f. 19v
Alexander attacking
Burial of Darius

ff. 20v-21
Burial of Darius
 
Alexander and Porrus

ff. 22v-23
Alexander and Porrus
Queen of the Amazons

ff. 23v-24
Queen of the Amazons
Alexander and the Queen of the Amazons

f. 25
Alexander and the Queen of the Amazons
 
Alexander battling the beasts

f. 26
Alexander battling the beasts
Alexander and crabs

f. 26
Alexander and crabs
Alexander and Porrus

ff. 26v-27
Alexander and Porrus
 
Alexander

ff. 27v-28
Alexander
Alexander and the cave dwellers

f. 28
Alexander and the cave dwellers
Alexander in India

ff. 28v-29
Alexander in India
 
Alexander in India

ff. 29v-30
Alexander in India
Alexander in India

ff. 30v-31
Alexander in India
Alexander burning a wild man

f. 31
Alexander burning a wild man
 
Alexander in India

ff. 31v-32
Alexander in India
Alexander in India

ff. 32v-33
Alexander in India
Alexander and Candace

f. 33v
Alexander and Candace
 
Alexander encountering strange beasts

f. 35v
Alexander encountering strange beasts
Alexander

f. 36
Alexander
Alexander

f. 36v
Alexander
 
Alexander and griffins

f. 37
Alexander and griffins
Alexander and griffins

f. 37
Alexander and griffins
Alexander

f. 37v
Alexander
 
Alexander

f. 37v
Alexander
Alexander

f. 38
Alexander
Alexander

f. 38
Alexander
 
Alexander

f. 38
Alexander
Alexander

f. 38
Alexander
Alexander

ff. 38v-39
Alexander
 
Alexander

f. 38v
Alexander
Alexander

f. 39v
Alexander
Alexander

f. 40
Alexander
 
Payment of tribute

f. 40
Payment of tribute
Alexander

f. 40
Alexander
Alexander

f. 40v
Alexander
 
Jobas giving Alexander poison

f. 41v
Jobas giving Alexander poison
Death of Alexander

f. 43v
Death of Alexander
Burning of a city

f. 45
Burning of a city
 
Alexander in battle

f. 47
Alexander in battle
Alexander in battle

f. 47
Alexander in battle
Nicholas and Maffeo Polo

f. 58
Nicholas and Maffeo Polo
 
Nicholas and Maffeo Polo

f. 58
Nicholas and Maffeo Polo
The Great Khan

f. 59v
The Great Khan
The Great Khan

f. 59v
The Great Khan
 
The Great Khan

f. 61
The Great Khan
The Great Khan

f. 61
The Great Khan
City of Baghdad

f. 64
City of Baghdad
 
Saracens and Christians

f. 65
Saracens and Christians
Return of the Magi

f. 65v
Return of the Magi
Return of the Magi

f. 66v
Return of the Magi
 
Camadi

f. 68
Camadi
Camadi

f. 68
Camadi
Old Man of the Mountain

f. 70v
Old Man of the Mountain
 
Old Man of the Mountain

f. 70v
Old Man of the Mountain
River of Badashan

f. 72v
River of Badashan
River of Badashan

f. 72v
River of Badashan
 
People of Compision

f. 76
People of Compision
People of Compision

f. 76
People of Compision
Battle of Genghis Khan and Prester John

f. 77v
Battle of Genghis Khan and Prester John
 
Worship of the Tartar god

f. 78v
Worship of the Tartar god
Worship of the Tartar god

f. 78v
Worship of the Tartar god
Magicians

f. 81v
Magicians
 
Magicians

f. 81v
Magicians
Kubla Khan

f. 83
Kubla Khan
Kubla Khan

f. 83
Kubla Khan
 
Kubla Khan

f. 84
Kubla Khan
Kubla Khan

f. 84
Kubla Khan
Death of Nayan

f. 85
Death of Nayan
 
Death of Nayan

f. 85
Death of Nayan
The Khan and his wives

f. 86
The Khan and his wives
The Khan and his wives

f. 86
The Khan and his wives
 
The Khan

f. 88
The Khan
The Khan

f. 90
The Khan
The Khan

f. 90
The Khan
 
The Khan's barons

f. 93
The Khan's barons
The Khan's barons

f. 93
The Khan's barons
The Khan

f. 95
The Khan
 


f. 95
Coronation of Mangalai

f. 97
Coronation of Mangalai
Tibetans

f. 98v
Tibetans
 
Killing serpents

f. 101
Killing serpents
Battle of the Khan

f. 103
Battle of the Khan
Towers of Mien

f. 105
Towers of Mien
 
Traitors beheaded

f. 107
Traitors beheaded
Traitors beheaded

f. 107
Traitors beheaded
Khan's army

f. 108v
Khan's army
 
Mangonel

f. 111
Mangonel
Kinsay

f. 113
Kinsay
The Khan

f. 115
The Khan
 
Boat with merchandise

f. 117
Boat with merchandise
Monstrous idols

f. 118
Monstrous idols
Two towers

f. 120v
Two towers
 
Java the Less

f. 122
Java the Less
Armies of Maatar

f. 125
Armies of Maatar
Shrine of Thomas

f. 127v
Shrine of Thomas
 
Abyssinia

ff. 132v-133
Abyssinia
Jean de Vignay

f. 136
Jean de Vignay
Jean de Vignay

f. 136
Jean de Vignay
 
Text page

f. 136v
Text page
Text page

f. 137
Text page
Text page

f. 137v
Text page
 
Text page

f. 138
Text page
Text page

f. 138v
Text page
Text page

f. 139
Text page
 
Text page

f. 139v
Text page
Text page

f. 140
Text page
Text page

f. 140v
Text page
 
Text page

f. 141
Text page
Text page

f. 141v
Text page
Text page

f. 142
Text page
 
Text page

f. 142v
Text page
Text page

f. 143
Text page
Text page

f. 143v
Text page
 
Text page

f. 144
Text page
Text page

f. 144v
Text page
Text page

f. 145
Text page
 
Text page

f. 145v
Text page
Text page

f. 146
Text page
Text page

f. 146v
Text page
 
Text page

f. 147
Text page
Text page

f. 147v
Text page
Text page

f. 148
Text page
 
Pope Innocent IV

f. 148v
Pope Innocent IV
Pope Innocent IV

f. 148v
Pope Innocent IV
Jean de Vignay

f. 165v
Jean de Vignay
 
Jean de Vignay

f. 165v
Jean de Vignay
King of France

f. 168
King of France
Two messengers

f. 175
Two messengers
 
Text page

f. 175v
Text page
Eastern Emperor

f. 178
Eastern Emperor
Emperor

f. 185v
Emperor
 
Crusaders

f. 187v
Crusaders
Crusaders

f. 187v
Crusaders
Battle of Saracens and Christians

f. 189v
Battle of Saracens and Christians
 
Abbot of St Denis

f. 194
Abbot of St Denis
Siege of St Germain L'Aiguillet

f. 202
Siege of St Germain L'Aiguillet
Attack on Carthage

f. 213
Attack on Carthage
 
Funeral of the Comte de Nevers

f. 216
Funeral of the Comte de Nevers
Homage to Philip III

f. 222v
Homage to Philip III
Relics of Louis

f. 227
Relics of Louis
 
Relics of Louis

f. 227
Relics of Louis
Miracle at Bayeux

f. 229v
Miracle at Bayeux
Miracle at Bayeux

f. 229v
Miracle at Bayeux
 
Defeat of the Saracens

f. 233
Defeat of the Saracens
Murder of Henry of Almaine

f. 238v
Murder of Henry of Almaine
King of France

f. 246
King of France
 
David and Goliath

f. 252
David and Goliath
David and Goliath

f. 252
David and Goliath
Death of Absalom

f. 263v
Death of Absalom
 

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