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Ownership Inscription, in a Collection of Writings by St Augustine

Ownership Inscription, in a Collection of Writings by St Augustine

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1202

Shelfmark: Royal MS 5 B.xii

Item number: f.3v

Length: 26.5

Width: 16.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Manuscript

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The priory of the cathedral of St Andrew, Rochester, possessed a great number of books, most of which became the medieval manuscripts section of Henry VIII's library when the bishop of Rochester's belongings were confiscated in 1534 or upon his execution in 1535. The clerics, monks and canons at the cathedral would have need for many types of books: for study, conducting church and prayer services and for personal devotion. This manuscript, copied in the early 12th century, contained St Augustine's 'On Christian Doctrine' and 'On True Religion'. In the late 12th or beginning of the 13th century, the monastery's cantor, Alexander, wrote out a catalogue of all the books owned by the priory on the flyleaves at the front of this manuscript.

A medieval manuscript's fly-leaves, as inviting blank space, were prone to being used for many types of notes, added at any time after the manuscript was made. The back of the last leaf used for the library catalogue was inscribed by late 15th-century monks of Rochester. One of them, Thomas Wybarn, wrote that he was a monk of "Roffin.", an abbreviation of the latin name for Rochester. The long set of notes was written by Patrick Young, another monk.

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