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 Detail from the Roman de la Rose
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Detailed record for Additional 17275

Author Jean Beleth (?translator)
Title Vie des Saints, a Legendary consisting of the lives of 154 saints, partially translated from the Legenda Aurea, with the translation here attributed to Jehan Beleth
Origin France, Central (Paris)
Date Between 1325 and 1340
Language French
Script Gothic
Scribe Jean de Senlis and one other scribe (Rouse & Rouse, Manuscripts and their Makers, 2000)
Artists Thomas de Maubeuge (Rouse & Rouse, Manuscripts and their Makers, 2000)
Decoration 160 miniatures, mostly two columns in width, on diapered grounds, each accompanied by a framed initial in colours on a gold ground with foliate pen-flourishing, some forming partial borders. An added full page coat of arms in colours and gold (f. 1v). Numerous initials in blue or red with pen-flourishing in the other colour. Rubrics in red. Cadels.
Dimensions in mm 409 x 305 (305 x 230) written in 3 columns
Official foliation ff. 353 (ff. 1 and 2 are parchment flyleaves + 1 unfoliated parchment leaf after f. 5 and 1 after f. 195 + 2 unfoliated paper flyleaves at the beginning and 2 at the end)
Collation i4 (ff. 2-5), ii-xxiii8 (ff. 6-189), xxiv5 + 1(ff. 190-194), xxv-xliii8 (ff195-353). Quire signatures and occasional catchwords.
Form Parchment codex
Binding BL/BM in-house. Rebound in 1962.
Provenance Probably commissioned from Thomas de Maubeuge (fl. 1313-1339), libraire of the University of Paris, by a royal or high-ranking client (see Rouse & Rouse, Manuscripts and their Makers, (2000), p. 188): a note in a modern hand states that the manuscript 'issued from the House of Condé...It is supposed to have been executed by order of one of that family..' (f. 2r)
Notes on the humours in a cursive hand of the 15th century.
A member of the Chateauvillain family, owned by them: their arms on an added leaf, with the motto, 'Espoir de Myeulx' (f. 1v); the note on the facing page identifies these as the 'Arms of Chateauvilain, quartering de Coucy and another' (f. 2r).
Bought by the British Museum from Henry Bohn, bookseller, brother of James Bohn, translator and publisher (b. 1796, d. 1884), 13 November, 1847.
Notes The life of the Welsh saint, Teilo on ff. 195v-199v, translated by Geoffroi de Nes on 29 September 1325, provides a terminus post quem. This and a unique copy of the life of David, the Breton missionary to the Welsh, (ff. 199v-201v), indicate that the patron may have had ties to Wales or Brittany. Two other unique texts are the life of Mathurin (ff. 281-286v) and this version of the life of Colombe de Sens (see Rouse & Rouse, Manuscripts and their Makers (2000), p. 181).
The voyage of Brendan is depicted on f. 262.

The text belongs to Paul Meyer's 'G' group, along with Brussels, Bibliotheque Royale, MS 9225, Paris BnF fr. 183 and 185. The translation used antedates Jean de Vignay's of c. 1333-1340 and is attributed to 'Jehan Beleth' in this manuscript and the others in the group.
The Rouses identify Thomas de Maubeuge, Parisian libraire, as producer of this manuscript and of BnF fr. 185 and Paris, BnF fr. 183 (now part of a two-volume set with Den Haag, KB MS 71 A 24) is believed to be from the same workshop.
Instructions to the illuminator have mostly been scraped away but traces survive (e.g., f. 170v).
Select bibliography The British Museum Catalogue of Additions to the Manuscripts,1846-1847 (London: British Museum, 1876), p. 383.

Catalogue of Romances in the Department of Manuscripts in the British Museum, ed. by H.L.D. Ward and J.A. Herbert, 3 vols (London: British Museum, 1883-1910), II (1893), p. 550.

Paul Meyer, 'Notice sur trois légendiers français attribués à Jean Belet', Notices et extraits des manuscrits de la Bibliothèque Nationale, 36/2, (1901). 409-86.

The Old French prose legend of Saint Julian the Hospitaller, ed. by Carolyn Taylor Swan (Tu¨bingen: Niemeyer, 1977), pp. 19, 79.

Jean-Pierre Perrot, Le Passionnaire français au Moyen Age (Geneva, 1992), p. 317.

Alison Stones, 'The Stylistic Context of the Roman de Fauvel, with a Note on Fauvain', in Fauvel Studies: Allegory, Chronicle, Music, and Image in Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, MS français 146, ed. by Margaret Bent and Andrew Wathey (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1998), 529-567, p. 545 n. 60.

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. 192-93, 373 n. 104; II, App. 7D, 7F, 7J, 7M.

Piotr Tylus, Légendes dominicaines dans la littérature française du moyen âge: tradition manuscrite, transformations, diffusion, accueil, (Krakow: Wydawnictwo Universytetu Jagiellonskiego, 2007), pp. 37-60, 361.

Anne-Françoise Leurquin, 'Les hésitations du cycle christique du légendier G de Paul Meyer', in Le recueil au Moyen Âge, le Moyen Âge central: Texte, Codex et Contexte, ed. by Yasmina Foehr-Janssens&Olivier Collet, 8, (Turnhout, Brepols, 2010), pp. 223-35), pp. 223, n. 1, 224, n. 4, 225-33.


Images
* * *
 
Presentation scene with Beleth and a king

f. 3
Presentation scene with Beleth and a king
Christ in Majesty

f. 7
Christ in Majesty
The Entry to Jerusalem

f. 17v
The Entry to Jerusalem
 
Michael at the gates of Heaven

f. 20
Michael at the gates of Heaven
Theophilus and the devil

f. 29v
Theophilus and the devil
Constantine's vision at Milvian Bridge

f. 33
Constantine's vision at Milvian Bridge
 
The Assumption of the Virgin and 'Noli me tangere'

f. 37
The Assumption of the Virgin and 'Noli me tangere'
Phillip and the dragon

f. 43v
Phillip and the dragon
Pentecost

f. 56
Pentecost
 
James the Great borrows an ass

f. 61v
James the Great borrows an ass
Luke

f. 92
Luke
John the Baptist

f. 93
John the Baptist
 
Stoning of Stephen

f. 96v
Stoning of Stephen
Julian the Hospitaler

f. 103v
Julian the Hospitaler
Julian the Hospitaler murders his parents

f. 109
Julian the Hospitaler murders his parents
 
Julian the Hospitaler rescues a pilgrim

f. 110v
Julian the Hospitaler rescues a pilgrim
Denis and the idols

f. 118
Denis and the idols
Baptism and enthronement of Denis

f. 119v
Baptism and enthronement of Denis
 
Denis captured

f. 121v
Denis captured
Denis, Rusticus and Eleutherius

f. 123r
Denis, Rusticus and Eleutherius
The beheading of  Denis, Rusticus and Eleutherius

f. 124v
The beheading of Denis, Rusticus and Eleutherius
 
Soul of Denis carried to Heaven

f. 125
Soul of Denis carried to Heaven
The martyrdom of Symphorianus

f. 134
The martyrdom of Symphorianus
Murder of Thomas Becket

f. 146
Murder of Thomas Becket
 
Christopher

f. 161
Christopher
Four knights beheaded

f. 162v
Four knights beheaded
Arsenius on his deathbed

f. 166v
Arsenius on his deathbed
 
Fursius building a church

f. 167
Fursius building a church
Vaast and Armand preaching

f. 168v
Vaast and Armand preaching
Pope Calixtus

f. 169
Pope Calixtus
 
The purgatory of Patrick

f. 191v
The purgatory of Patrick
Nicholas enters purgatory

f. 192v
Nicholas enters purgatory
Maturinus and the devil

f. 281
Maturinus and the devil
 
Maturinus at sea

f. 283v
Maturinus at sea
Maturinus in Rome

f. 285
Maturinus in Rome
Genevieve

f. 301
Genevieve
 
Martha and Christ

f. 339v
Martha and Christ
Christ healing the leper

f. 340
Christ healing the leper
The Virgin and Mary Magdalen

f. 341
The Virgin and Mary Magdalen
 

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