You are in Introduction. Click here to skip the navigation.
British Library
Digital Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts
 Detail from the Roman de la Rose
About Simple search Manuscript search Advanced search  Virtual exhibitions Glossaries Contact us  Main
print Print this page
home Home
site search Search British Library website
back Back

search tips  Search tips



Detailed record for Harley 3004

Author Augustine
Title Confessiones
Origin Germany, W. (Arnstein)
Date between c. 1200 and 1217
Language Latin
Script Gothic, written above top line
Scribe Theodericus
Decoration 5 large initials in red, brown and some yellow, on a green ground, frequently with foliate motifs and clasps, occasionally with grotesques and animals, once with a bearded head, for the prologue and books 1, 2, 5 and 8 (ff. 2v, 3, 13v, 38v, 74). 2 large initials in red, with arabesque motifs in light brown at the beginning of books 3 and 4 (ff. 19, 27v), one including a head. 6 large initials in red, occasionally with reserved lines, some yellow, and minor penwork decoration, at the beginning of books 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 (ff. 49v, 61v, 86, 99, 122, 134v, 148). Display script in red with minor penwork decoration for letters following some large initials. Rubrics in red. Capitals marked in red.
Dimensions in mm 230 x 135 (170 x 90)
Official foliation ff. [1*] + 2* + 167 (+ 5 unfoliated paper flyleaves at the beginning and 5 at the end; ff. [1*], 2*, 1, 166 and 167 are medieval parchment flyleaves)
Form Parchment codex
Binding BM/BL in-house. Rebound in 1976; remains of one previous binding (gold- and blind-tooled dark brown leather) are pasted inside on the inside lower cover; the previous spine is pasted on the inside upper cover; ff. [1*] and 167v were once pasted on wooden boards.
Provenance The Premonstratensian abbey of St Mary and St Nicholas, Arnstein, written by the canon Theodericus: inscribed, 13th century 'liber sancte marie sanctique nicolai in arinstein, quem scripsit Theodericus canonicus ibidem, quem si quis abstulerit anatema sit' (f. 1). Perhaps written before he became abbot in 1217 (see Watson 1979): inscribed by a different and slightly later 13th-century hand 'quem scripsit abbas Theodericus' (f. 165v); the entry 'Liber confessionum sancti Augustini' was added to the library catalogue c. 1225 (see Krings 1990, p. 254); Heinrich Schupp, abbot of this monastery (1556-1574) added chapter divisions, references to Bible passages and running headers in red in the margins and inscribed 'Hic liber, ut in calce videtur a venerabili domino Theoderico abbate huius monasterii Arnsteyn conscriptus, a me, Henrico Schupio, eiusdem loci licet abbati indigno, suis titulis, capitibus atque annotationibus sacre scripture respondentibus juxta aeditionem Erasmi Roterodami est elucidatus anno domini salvatoris nostri Jhesu Christi millesimo quingentesimo septuagesimo. Benedictus Deus' (f. 2).
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.
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 ff. [1*] and 167 are from an ?11th- or 12th-century manuscript with musical notation as well as simple initials in red and light brown; ff. 2* and 166 are from a 12th-century manuscript and have 2 simple initials in red. Contemporary quire and leaf marks (a1-a5, b1-b5 etc.); guide-script for rubricator (see e.g. f. 13v). Between ff. 2 and 3 is a fragment of a leaf.
Select bibliography A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts, in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: [n. pub.], 1808-12), no. 3004.

A. Kohl, 'Arnsteiner Handschriften im Britischen Museum zu London', Nassovia. Zeitschrift für nassauische Geschichte und Heimatkunde, 4 (1903), 106-08,120-21,133-34 (p. 108).

C. E. Wright, Fontes Harleiani: A Study of the Sources of the Harleian Collection of Manuscripts in the British Museum (London: British Museum, 1972), p. 53.

Andrew G. Watson, Catalogue of Dated and Datable Manuscripts c. 700-1600 in The Department of Manuscripts: The British Library, 2 vols (London: British Library, 1979), I, no. 720, II, pl. 123.

Sigrid Krämer, Handschriftenerbe des deutschen Mittelalters, Mittelalterliche Bibliothekskataloge Deutschlands und der Schweiz: Ergänzungsband 1, 3 vols (Munich, 1989-90), I (1989), p. 25.

Bruno Krings, Das Prämonstratenserstift Arnstein a. d. Lahn im Mittelalter (1139-1527) (Wiesbaden: Selbstverlag der Historischen Kommission für Nassau, 1990), p. 254 no. 22.

* * *
Decorated initial

f. 2v
Decorated initial

print Print this page
home Home
site search Search British Library website
back Back
top Back

About Simple search Manuscript search Advanced search
Virtual exhibitions Glossaries Accessibility Contact us Main

All text is © British Library Board and is available under a CC-BY Licence except where otherwise stated