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Ownership Inscription, in a Copy of the Pauline Epistles With Explanatory Notes

Ownership Inscription, in a Copy of the Pauline Epistles With Explanatory Notes

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1240

Shelfmark: Harley MS 3249

Item number: f.1r

Length: 36.2

Width: 23.8

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

In the middle ages, the Bible was read aloud as part of church services and during daily prayers, and it was privately for theological study and personal devotion. A variety of aids were developed in for these different kinds of reading. For theological study, surrounding the text from the Bible with explanatory notes and / or words written between its lines to help the reader understand obscure or difficult vocabulary and grammar. This is called 'glossing'. This manuscript contains St Paul's Epistles with commentary glosses. It belonged to the Franciscan convent at Oxford. One of the new orders of preaching friars, the Franciscans were part of the scene at medieval universities. The first page of the manuscript has an inscription--probably written by a librarian at the convent--identifying the book's contents and stating was the property of the community of Friars Minor (Franciscans) at Oxford, given by Radulf, formerly bishop of Hereford (1234-1239). This was Radulf of Maidstone who became a Franciscan and joined the friars at Oxford after leaving Hereford.

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