BL Additional MS. 26746

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Production Practicalities and Reception Issues:

checked against microfilm

  • Pressmark / Name of  Book: BL MS Add. 26746
  • Matheson no: 51
  • Date(s): C16
  • Type of book: Brut chronicle
  • Manuscript or print?: MS
  • No of items: 1
  • Contents: Brut chronicle, fols. 1r-371v, begins and ends imperfectly.
  • Writing support: paper
  • Watermark?:
  • Book Construction:
  • Collation: tentative from microfilm:
    • No of leaves: iii? + 371 + iii? folios
    • Blank leaves:
    • Quires: i10 (wants 1); ii-viii10; ix14 [poss. two quires, wanting 6 leaves]; x-xiii10; xiv8 [prob. xiv10 wants 2]; xv-xxxvii10. Ends with a catchword.
    • Foliation: modern pencil, top right corner; older pagination on top outer corners, cancelled on recto leaves.
    • Composite MS? no
    • Booklets?: no
    • Catchwords? (on which fols?): 9v, 19v, 29v, 39v, 49v, 59v, 69v, 79v, 93v, 103v, 113v, 123v, 133v, 141v, 151v, 161v, 171v, 181v, 191v, 201v, 211v, 221v, 231v, 241v, 251v, 261v, 271v, 281v, 291v, 301v, 311v, 321v, 331v, 341v, 351v, 361v, 371v.
    • Quire signatures? (where?): no
    • Damage?:  approx 8/10 of fol. 7 torn away, leaving the inner margin with some text; bottom outer corner of fols. 80-81 torn away with loss of text;
  • Page layout:

a. ruling: (ink or drypoint?) frames, prob. in lead
b. columns: 1
c. lines:25

  • Ink:
  • Dimensions:
    • front board: N/A
    • Folio / page: 270mm x 190mm approx.
    • Writing space: 190mm x 130mm approx.
  • Binding: N/A
  • Decoration?: N/A
  • Artist?: N/A
  • No. of Scribes: 1
  • Named scribes?:
  • Hand date; style; version; holograph, autograph?: C16 Secretary, with double-compartment ‘a’, single-ascender ‘d’.
  • Hand, rubrication in other MSS?: N/A
  • Compiler?: N/A
  • Rubrication, sigla: 2 or 3-line solid caps, in red; chapter headings with 1-line solid caps and numbers in red; proper names in colours and sometimes underlined in colours (e.g. fol. 29r); initials and numbers touched in yellow; catchwords rubricated either in scrollwork or boxes with hatched borders; double hyphens; occasional side notes; some ascenders of top line letters flourished into margin.
  • Biobibliographical information: marginalia, glosses, signatures, compiler/ scribe / owner / authorial identification:
    • Front flyleaf (ii verso): purchase note: col. J. G Smyth M. P. June 24 1865; BL Pressmark.
    • Flyleaf (iii verso): Bookplate of John Smyth of Heath.
    • 2r: ‘Cronicle written 35 yeares ago’, C16.
    • 3v: ‘[…] est anno’, C16.
    • 9r: two musical scores.
    • 9v: ‘John Pamplyn’ See fol. 110r, C16.
    • 10r: ‘part of a chronological hist. of England down to H. 5 Reign inclusive’, C16; ‘john portor’, pen trials.
    • 46v: pen trials, C16.
    • 60r: pen trials, C16.
    • 84r: pen trials, C16.
    • 94r: ‘[…] the […] Thomas Watson’
    • 110r, inverted: ‘pamplyn pilcher john haris’, C16.
    • 132v ‘tomas †’, C16.
    • 139r: ‘John wyllny’, C16.
    • 148v: ‘fardyng’, pentrials, C16.
    • 154r: ‘de delyuered to hennes’, C16.
    • 154v: ‘(By?) my john porter of Retllue Alitun grosser in the county of Essex hath lent of  on thomas harey mon […] ffat oxen for xxxti of englishe money to be […] my […]’, C16.
    • 156r: ‘ m Thomas […]ay’, ‘thomas’ [twice], ‘tho’, C16.
    • 157v: ‘the xxviij daye’, C16.
    • 162r: ‘Md dd vnto good man haynes’, ‘haynes’ [twice], C16.
    • 169v: ‘H fox iij shoes for þe baye horss’, C16.
    • 171v: ‘Roberte’, C16, pen trials. C16, ‘?Tonn’, C16.
    • 180v: ‘Md payd vnto William sansun of halstead jn the of Essex ss(ar?)nyre loan f’, C16.
    • 181v: pen trial (large cap).
    • 194v: pen trials, C16.
    • 195v: ‘?Thomas […] payd’, C16.
    • 196v: ‘payd x porter payd vppon  you in the’, C16.
    • 199v: ‘a Md dd vnto John’, ‘Md good[?] Boye Joh’, C16.
    •  200v: Memoranda ‘Porter’, ‘John’, pen trials, c16.
    • 210v: ‘Thomas’ [three times], C16.
    • 206r: inverted: ‘Andarson’, ‘and good’, pen trials, C16.
    • 209v: ‘John Tabor tabor’, C16; ‘William Bowsy’, C16.
    •  212v: ‘Thomas whierton’, pen trials, C16.
    • 221r: trimmed marginalia.
    • 222r: ‘this is my […] son[…], C16.
    • 223r: ‘Th’, c16.
    • 223v: maxim, signed Matthew Pu[…]’, C16.
    • 224v: musical score.
    • 225v: ‘this is my’, C16.
    • 233v: ‘John’ (three times), ‘John Sansun’, pen trials, C16; ‘’William mylyaye’, C16.
    • 235r: pen trials, C16.
    • 237v: beginning of letter, C16.
    •  239v: ‘William mylenney’, ‘william’ (twice), ‘john’, pen trials, C16.
    •  240v: ‘Chelmysford in the’, pen trials, C16.
    • 249r: ‘by your sonn John Same[n?]’, ‘y you that my’, C16.
    • 251v-252r: pen trials, C16.
    •  260v: ‘William mylenneye’, C16.
    • 264v: ‘Jt payd for’, ‘god be wt you in’, ‘quit and payd’, ‘Thomas no[h?a?]eton’, pen trials, C16.
    • 265v: ‘Jhn pd for xx iij Joes’, pen trials, C16.
    •  270r: ‘haue pree[v?]isi’, C16.
    •  271v: ‘Mr Thomas Mylen’, C16.
    • 272r: Latin Maxim, C 18.
    • 280r-v: pen trials, C16.
    • 281v: pen trial, C16.
    • 282r: ‘and kelee is all right and the clayme that he hadde made’, C16.
    • 283r inverted: ‘William willy’, ‘William sharow of halsted’ ‘martyn’, ‘for ij she[…]’, C16.
    • 286v: Mr Th’, C16.
    •  288v: pen trials, C16.
    • 292v inverted: ‘Jt for iijth of Jron’, pen trials, C16.
    • 301v: pen trials, C16.
    • 302r: ‘John Sharow’, C16.
    • 311v: pen trials, C16.
    • 313v: ‘John Ball is in good’, C16.
    • 321v: ‘Mr Ayer John Sparrowe’, ‘hary’, ‘thos’, ‘kynge henry the Viijti’, ‘William’, ‘ this bill’, pen trials, C16.
    • 322r: ‘John kyng of Baddowe[?]’, C16.
    • 322v: ‘Md payd’, C16.
    • 324r: pen trials, C16.
    • 330v: ‘Jt for’, ‘Jt for Thomas bord’, C16.
    • 331v: ‘into the quenes [twice]’, ‘Jt for Ij haspes and iij […]’, pen trials, C16.
    •  341v: pen trials, C16.
    • 343v: pen trials, C16.
    •  351v: pen trials, C16.
    • 353r: ‘Thys is Thomas spynkes boke Servan to oure souereygne lorde kinge henry the viijth god save hys grace Amen’.
    • 361v-362r: pen trials, C16.
    • Back flyleaf (ir): ‘ff 371’, C19.
  • Glosses and underlining:
    • C16 glosses (hand of Thomas Watson, see fol. 94r) on fols. 6r, 9r, 11r-v, 14r-16v, 20v-22v, 23v, 70r, 89r, 97r, 102r (Latin), 113v, 125r (diff. hand), 129r (diff. hand), 134r, 137r (diff. hand), 139v, 140v, 141v-142r, 143v, 144v,-145v, 146v, 148r, 211v-212r, 220v, 262r,  351r.
    • Cancelled text (‘pope’, ‘seint’ etc., by Thomas Watson judging by accompanying marginalia) on fols. 33v, 35r, 89r, 132v, 133v-134v, 135r, 137v, 139v, 140v, 141v-142v, 143v-147r, 148r-149r, 151r-v, 170r, 183r, 190v, 191v, 192r,  237r, 237v, 248v-249v, 259r, 277v, 280r, 282r (erased), 287v, 296r, 297r, 304r, 305r, 306r, 307r, 308v, 309r, 310r, 315r, 352v (‘shryne’ cancelled and replaced by ‘Bekketts grave’).
    • C18-19 glosses on fols. 80r, 84r,  137r, 138r, 139r, 371v.
  • Immediate Ownership(s) / Patronage:
  • Later ownership(s): prob. Thomas Watson, C16 (temp Henry VIII or later); prob. John Porter, C16; Thomas Spynke, temp Henry VIII; John Smyth, C19.
  • Affiliations: (geo-)political, institutional etc: Court of Henry VIII through Thomas Spynke’s connection there.
  • Language(s); translation activities: N/A
  • Dialect: N/A
  • LALME vol., page, LP, grid no.: N/A
  • Locality: region; household (secular/religious) urban / rural: Essex, Chelmsford area (Halstead, Baddow, poss. Writtle) in C16.

Intertextual relations:

  • Textual descent: Matheson ‘Common Version’, group CV-1419[r&g]:A. See Matheson, PB, pp. 106-107, 115-116.
  • Evidence of exemplar: N/A
  • Intra-textual relations to texts in same MS: N/A
  • Extra-textual to other books, texts, traditions: N/A
  • Decoration: N/A
  • Translation, language: N/A

Credits and acknowledgments:

The description of this MS is based on microfilm work by J O’R. Textual descent based on Matheson, PB.

Select Bibliography for this MS:

MSS: note: mss marked * are listed by Matheson as doubtful, see PB, pp. 113-114.


Bibliothèque Royale ms IV.461 *


Takamiya ms 67


CUL MS Kk.1.12
TCC MS O.10.34
FitzWilliam Museum MS McClean 186
University of Glasgow MS Hunter 228
University of Glasgow MS Hunter 61 *
BL MS Harley 2248
BL MS Royal 17 D. xxi
BL MS Royal 18 B. iii *
College of Arms MS Vincent 421
Rylands MS Eng. 104 *
Bodl. MS Bodley 231 *
Bodl. MS Douce 290 *
Bodl. MS Rawl. B. 216
Longleat House MS 183A


Berkeley ms 152 *
Cambridge, Mass.
Harvard ms Eng. 587
New Haven
Beineke ms 323


Much of the marginalia in this ms is in the outer margins of verso leaves, especially ‘items’ and ‘memoranda’.

154v, ‘Rettlue Alitun’ may be Writtle, nr. Chelmsford and Gt. Baddow, Essex.

The cancelling of contentious words such as ‘pope’ seems to have been carried out (very thoroughly) by Thomas Watson.

The names John King and Thomas Watson also appear in BL MS Royal 18 B. iii.

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