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Detailed record for Harley 2770

Author Virgil
Title Aeneid with verse preface
Origin France or Germany
Date Last quarter of the 12th century
Language Latin
Script Protogothic, written above top line
Decoration Added drawing in brown ink of an armed knight with a spear and shield (f. 1). Decorated initial in red ink with foliate and zoomorphic motifs (f. 2). Initials in red with simple penwork decoration, some large, some small. Initials in brown with simple penwork decoration. Capitals marked in red.
Dimensions in mm 280 x 175 (230 x 130) in two columns
Official foliation ff. 54 (+ 3 unfoliated paper flyleaves at the beginning and at the end)
Form Parchment codex
Binding Post-1600. 'Harleian' binding of gold-tooled red leather; marbled endpapers.
Provenance Johann Georg Graevius (b. 1632, d. 1703), German classical scholar and critic: his catalogue no. 11, sold to Wilhelm together with the rest of his library in 1703 (Wright 1972): shelfmark 'G 18 in his catalogue of 1703.
Johann Wilhelm, Elector Palatine (b. 1658, d. 1716), owner of a library in Düsseldorf: bought the entire Graevius library in 1703 (Wright 1972).
Giovanni Giacomo Zamboni (d. 1753), resident in London for the Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt (c. 1723-1753), friend of Michael Mattaire, the classical scholar and historian of printing: bought the Wilhelm library sometime before 1724 through Johann Büchels (b. 1659, d. 1738) (Wright 1972).
The Harley Collection, formed by Robert Harley (b. 1661, d. 1724), 1st earl of Oxford and Mortimer, politician, and Edward Harley (b. 1689, d. 1741), 2nd earl of Oxford and Mortimer, book collector and patron of the arts, inscribed as usual by their librarian, Humfrey Wanley, '6 die mensis Augusti, A.D. 1724' (f. 1).
Edward Harley bequeathed the library to his widow, Henrietta Cavendish, née Holles (b. 1694, d. 1755) during her lifetime and thereafter to their daughter, Margaret Cavendish Bentinck (b. 1715, d. 1785), duchess of Portland; the manuscripts were sold by the Countess and the Duchess in 1753 to the nation for £10,000 (a fraction of their contemporary value) under the Act of Parliament that also established the British Museum; the Harley manuscripts form one of the foundation collections of the British Library.
Notes In two columns of 48 lines.
Marginal and interlinear annotations (extensive notes in Book VI).
f. 1 is a parchment flyleaf inscribed, 'Flor. P. Pothenii'.
Select bibliography A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: Eyre and Strahan, 1808-12), II (1808), no. 2770.

A Selection of Latin Stories from manuscripts of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries; a contribution to the history of fiction during the Middle Ages, ed. by Thomas Wright (London: Percy Society, 1842), VIII, p. 114 (= text on f. 42).

A. C. Clark, 'The Library of J. G. Graevius', The Classical Review, 5 (1891), 365-372 (p. 369).

The Diary of Humfrey Wanley 1715-1726, ed. by Cyril Ernest Wright and Ruth C. Wright, 2 vols (London: Bibliographical Society, 1966), II: 1723-1726, p. 303 n. 2.

Cyril Ernest Wright, Fontes Harleiani: A Study of the Sources of the Harleian Collection of Manuscripts in the British Museum (London: British Museum, 1972), pp. 169, 367.

R. D. Williams, T. S. Pattie, Virgil. His Poetry through the Ages (London: The British Library, 1982), p. 134.

B. Munk Olsen, L’Étude des auteurs classiques latins aux XIe et XIIe siècles, 3 vols (Paris: Centre national de la recherche scientifique, 1982-1989), II (1985), p. 732, no. C. 101.


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Decorated initial

f. 2
Decorated initial

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