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 Detail from the Roman de la Rose
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Detailed record for Royal 20 D II

Author Hélie de Borron (attributed to)
Title Roman de Tristan en prose, second part, imperfect at the beginning and the end
Origin France, Central (Paris)
Date c. 1300
Language French
Script Gothic
Decoration 60 large historiated initials in colours and gold (ff. 2, 6v, 7v, 10v, 13v (x 2), 15v, 19v, 22v, 24, 25v, 28, 30, 31v, 33, 38v, 39, 39v, 42v, 56, 61v, 70v, 73v, 74v, 99v, 102, 107v, 111v, 161v, 174, 176, 185, 188v, 223, 225, 228v, 238, 245, 252 (x 2), 253v, 254, 261v, 265, 267v, 270v, 276, 276v, 278, 283, 290v, 291v (x 2), 292, 301, 303v, 308, 310v, 311, 314v). 3 large initials in colours and gold with partial bar borders and foliate and/or zoomorphic motifs (ff. 123, 139v, 146v). Initials in gold on pink and blue grounds. Very small initials in gold with blue pen-flourishing (ff. 171 r-v).
Dimensions in mm 335 x 230 (265 x 160) in two columns
Official foliation ff. 315 (+ 1 unfoliated paper and 1 unfoliated parchment flyleaf at the beginning and at the end)
Form Parchment codex
Binding BM/BL in-house. Rebound in 1953.
Provenance Mary, daughter of Humphrey Bohun, wife of Henry, earl of Derby from 1380-1388 (see Fulda 1976).
Elizabeth Kirkeby: inscribed in the 15th century with her name and the motto, 'entier en tout' (f. 1v, 112v, 113) and '[Eli]zabeth Kykeby (f. 315v).
Admiral Prigent de Coëtivy: inscribed in the 15th century with his signature and mottos, 'a belle merciis' and 'dame sans per' (f. 1v).
Gorge Nessefeld, perhaps to be identified with the Captain of Vire in Normandy for Henry VI in 1420 (see Middleton 2006): inscribed in the 15th century: 'Cest liure cy est a G[e]orge Nessefeld' (f. 1v).
G. Hermanville: inscribed with his name in the 15th century, and with the following verses: 'Charles de Hermanuille vint /sua vn cheual qui valloit vint. /Vn vol de chiunc (?) sus son heaume /Bien sanbloit sire dun roieaume' (f. 1v).
Notes Horizontal catchwords.
Quire signatures.
Incipit: 'Or dit li contes que quant li rois Marc ot abatu monsengnor Y[uein] as blanches meins'.
Explicit: 'et de la furent trouees a porter premierement robes noires. Explicit'. Colophon, 'Ci faut li romanz de Tristran et diseult la b[l]onde de Cornoalle'.
The text itself dates from around the third quarter of the thirteenth century (see Roberta L. Krueger, The Cambridge Companion to Medieval Romance (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), p. 174.
f. [ii] Contains verses on prognostication for the year from the 1st of January attributed to the prophet Ezekiel (beginning, 'En terre de labour et de promission') and a 15th-century rondeau (beginning, 'De bien seruir a mon pouoir / Ie feray mon leal deuoir').
Jaroslav Fulda asserts that the artist of Royal 20 D II worked in Paris and his style closely resembles that of the artist of historiated initials in Tours, Bibl. Mun. MS 951 (Vulgate Arthurian cycle) and Brussels, Bibl. Roy., MS 9492-3 (History of Outremer) (see Fulda 1976).
Select bibliography H. L. D. Ward and J. A. Herbert, Catalogue of Romances in the Department of Manuscripts in the British Museum, 3 vols (London: British Museum, 1883-1910), I, pp. 361-62.

George F. Warner and Julius P. Gilson, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts in the Old Royal and King’s Collections, 4 vols (London: British Museum, 1921), II, pp. 377-78.

R. L. Curtis, 'The Problems of the Authorship of the Prose Tristan', Romania, 79 (1958), 314-38 (p. 325).

Jacqueline Thibault Schaefer, 'The Discourse of the Figural Narrative in the Illuminated Manuscripts of Tristan' in Word and Image in Arthurian Literature, ed. by Keith Busby (New York: Garland, 1996), pp. 174-202 (p. 179).

Donal Byrne, 'The Hours of the Admiral Prigent de Coëtivy (1)', Scriptorium: Revue internationale des études relative aux manuscrits, 28 (1974), 248-61 (p. 248).

Jaroslav Folda, Crusader Manuscript Illumination at Saint-Jean d'Acre, 1275-1291 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1976), pp. 121-24, 126, 128, 151, 197-98, no. 15.

Ceridwen Lloyd-Morgan, 'A Hitherto Unnoticed Fragment of La Queste del Saint-Graal', Bulletin bibliographique de la Société Internationale Arthurienne, 31 (1979), 203-15 (p. 204).

Michelle Szkilnik, L'Archipel du Graal. Étude de l'Estoire del Saint Graal (Geneva: Droz, 1991), p. 39 n. 20.

Jaroslav Folda, Crusaders Art in the Holy Land: From the Third Crusade to the Fall of Acre 1187-1291 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005), p. 525.

Jacqueline Thibault Schaefer, 'Modulations of Moduli in the Tristan Illuminated Manuscripts: Secular "Tryst" and Biblical "Temptation" Scenes', in Manuscripts in Transition, Corpus of Illuminated Manuscripts of the Low Countries, 15, ed. by Brigitte Dekeyser and Bert Cardon (Leuven: Peeters, 2005), pp. 139-48 (p. 144 n. 36).

Roger Middleton, 'The Manuscripts' in The Arthur of the French, ed. by Glyn S. Burgess and Karen Pratt , Arthurian Literature in the Middle Ages, 4 vols (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2006), IV, pp. 8-92 (p. 80).

* * *
Three mounted knights

f. 10v
Three mounted knights
Three men at a banquet

f. 22v
Three men at a banquet
Battling knights

f. 25v
Battling knights

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