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Detailed record for Harley 3114

Author Augustine
Title Tractatus in evangelium Johannis (Homilies 34-124); In epistulam Iohannis ad Parthos tractatus X
Origin Germany, W. (Arnstein?)
Date 2nd half of the 12th century
Language Latin
Script Protogothic, written above top line
Decoration Numerous decorated initials in red with a large variety of reserved designs and penwork decoration including arabesque motifs and thin feathery parallel lines, at the beginning of each Homily. Rubrics in red. Numerous pointing hands in crayon or plummet in the margins and occasionally in the body of the initial (e.g., ff. 109, 111).
Dimensions in mm 330 x 220 (250 x 170) in 2 columns
Official foliation ff. 169 (+ 2 unfoliated paper flyleaves at the beginning and 2 at the end)
Form Parchment codex
Binding Post-1600. Gold- and blind-tooled sprinkled brown leather over wooden boards.
Provenance The Premonstratensian abbey of St Mary and St Nicholas, Arnstein, founded in 1139: inscribed, ?14th century, 'Liber sancte marie virginis sanctique Nicolai in' a different hand continued 'arinstein beata maria virgo et mater deus', followed by further erased inscriptions (f. 1) and 'Liber beatissime marie virginis sancte marie santique nicolai in Arnsteyn' a different hand added '1283' (f. 1v); inscribed, 15th century 'Liber Sante [sic] Marie' (f. 169v); marginal notes by Heinrich Schupp, abbot of the monastery (1556-1574), (see Krings 1990, p. 262).
Nathaniel Noel (fl. 1681, d. c. 1753), bookseller, employed by Edward Harley for buying books and manuscripts chiefly on the Continent, where his agent was George Suttie (see 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 ‘16 die Ianuarij, A.D. 1720/21’ (f. 1); on 9 January 1720/21 Harley selected this and other manuscripts which Noel had 'lately brought from Germany'. The manuscripts arrived on 16 January 1720/21 (see Diary 1966).
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 Quire marks for ff. 1-136 in red (afterwards in black); apparently the same red was used for the rubrics.
As pointed out by Krings 1990, Homilies 1-33 are missing but because f. 1 is blank and the initial to Homily 34 on f. 1v is the largest in the manuscript it is likely that they were in a separate volume which is now lost.
Select bibliography A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: Eyre and Strahan, 1808-12), II, no. 3114.

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. 133).

The Diary of Humfrey Wanley 1715-1726, ed. by C. E. Wright and Ruth C. Wright, 2 vols (London: Bibliographical Society, 1966), I: 1715-1723, p. 81 n. 13.

C. E. Wright, Fontes Harleiani: A Study of the Sources of the Harleian Collection of Manuscripts in the British Museum (London: British Museum, 1972), pp. 53, 254.

Sigrid Krämer, Handschriftenerbe des deutschen Mittelalters, Mittelalterliche Bibliothekskataloge Deutschlands und der Schweiz: Ergänzungsband 1, 3 vols (Munich, 1989-90), I (1989), p. 26.

Bruno Krings, Das Prämonstratenserstift Arnstein a. d. Lahn im Mittelalter (1139-1527) (Wiesbaden: Selbstverlag der Historischen Kommission für Nassau, 1990), p. 262 (no. 38).

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Decorated initial

f. 1v
Decorated initial

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