BL Harley MS. 2182

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Production Practicalities and Reception Issues:

checked against microfilm

  • Pressmark / Name of  Book: BL MS Harley 2182
  • Matheson no.: 189
  • Date(s): C15
  • Type of book: Brut Chronicle
  • Manuscript or print?: MS
  • No of items: 1
  • Contents: Brut chronicle, fols. 1r-185r.
  • Writing support: parchment
  • Watermark?:
  • Book Construction: Folio, Quarto etc.
  • Collation: tentative, from microfilm.
    • No of leaves: i(?) + 188 fols. + i(?); fols. 1*, 2* and 186 are prob. original parchment flyleaves.
    • Blank leaves: 1*r-2*v; 185v-186v.
    • Quires: i-xii8; xiii7 (prob. 8 wants 1); xiv6 (prob. 8 wants 2); xv-xxiii8; xiv5 (prob. 6 wants 1).
    • Foliation: modern pencil? Top right corner.
    • Composite MS? no
    • Booklets?: no
    • Catchwords? (on which fols?): 8v, (16v, 24v missing), 32v, 40v, 48v, 56v, 64v, 72v, 80v, 88v, 96v, 103v, (109v missing), 117v, 125v, 133v, 141v, 149v, 157v, 165v, 173v, 181v.
    • Quire signatures? (where?): signed on bottom leading edges a-+ (follows z), j-iiij.
    • Damage?: Bottom margins of fols. 90, 115, 116 cut away with some loss of text on fol. 90; part of bottom margin of fols. 134, 171 cut away.
  • Page layout:

a. ruling: (ink or drypoint?) frames, poss. in lead or drypoint.
b. columns: 1
c. lines: 32-34

  • Ink:
  • Dimensions:
    • front board:
    • Folio / page:
    • Writing space:
  • Binding:
  • Decoration?:
  • Artist?:
  • No. of Scribes: 1
  • Named scribes?:
  • Hand date; style; version; holograph, autograph?: C15 Secretary script with Anglicana features. Single ascender ‘d’; secretary ‘w’; ‘2’-shaped ‘r’; ‘a’ and ‘g’ have double compartments.
  • Hand, rubrication in other MSS?: Takamiya fragments, Univ. of Virginia ms 38-173 and this ms are by the same scribe, and all mss have similar running titles after William the conqueror. The rubrication of Virginia 38-173 and this ms is all over very similar, the Takamiya fragments are also similar with the exception of the underlining of proper names and running titles.
  • Compiler?:
  • Rubrication, sigla: fol. 1r:  3-line solid cap infilled with foliage with pen flourishes into the margin, prob. in colours; 2-line solid caps infilled with foliage with pen flourishes into the margin, prob. in colours; rest of ms: 2-line solid caps prob. in blue with red pen flourishes into margin; chapter headings and numbers, poss. in blue or red; paraphs in text, poss. in blue or red; proper names underlined, poss. in red or blue; side notes; running titles, mostly from fol. 68v (William the Conqueror) rubricated ‘pq.q.’ in half boxes after the Norman Conquest; double hyphens.
  • Biobibliographical information: marginalia, glosses, signatures, compiler/ scribe / owner / authorial identification:
    • Front pastedown: modern pressmarks.
    • 1*r: erased and cancelled marginalia, some fragments of C16 Latin memos can be discerned.
    • 1*v: ‘John’, C17?; ‘Stephanus dei gra’, C18; ‘hic liber pertinet ad me William Jones’, C16; ‘lahctem’, C16; Latin verse signed ‘Johannes’, and ‘per me Johen Balin’, C17? In one verse ‘Johannes’ has been erased; Pressmarks.
    • 2*r: ‘George Ellis oweth this book’, C17; ‘Robartus Rostatrous ab Robert ddoud name’, ‘Rob[…] Rostatro[?us]’, pen trials, C16; ‘Jo: Thomas [twice]’, ‘John Thomas’,  ‘John twisse’ ‘A man of wordde and not of deede’, C17; pen trials and scribbles.
    • 2*v: erased marginalia?; ‘William Jones’, C16.
    • 51v, inverted: cancelled memo:  ‘[…] me Thomas B[…] Ashend […] Johan Thomas’, C17.
    • 80v: cancelled memo: ‘Johannes Mayson in Assen de comitatu fflint yeoman obligare me Johannes shones de moore in eade Comitata yeoman teneri […] Edward’, C17.
    • 90v: cancelled marginalia; indenture made the ‘sixth day’, ‘this boke […]’, C16.
    • 91v: ‘Com fflint’, C16-17.
    • 102r: pen trials, C17?.
    • 104r: ‘John Twisse’, C17.
    • 106r: ‘John Twiss’, C17.
    • 124v inverted: ‘John Twisse 1648’.
    • 136v inverted: ‘Edward Pritchard 1648’.
    • 140r inverted and cancelled marginalia.
    • 143r inverted: religious maxim, C16.
    • 150r: ‘Walter Havard’, C16.
    • 154v inverted: ‘John Twisse’, C17.
    • 156r inverted: ‘John Twisse’, C17.
    • 166r inverted: ‘John Twisse’, C17.
    • 166v: religious verse: ‘Awake o England wake rise vppe and cleare thine eyes [etc], C17.
    • 167v: cancelled religious verse, see fol. 166v.
    • 172r: ‘Joh’, C17.
    • 172v: cancelled religious verse, see fol. 166v.
    • 173v: religious verse, see fol. 166v.
    • 174v: cancelled memo: ‘Thomas Millington de Assenden in comitatus fflint yeoman Johannes shone de moore Jn comitatus  eade […]’, C17.
    • 177v: cancelled memo: ‘Johannes […] de Assend Comitata fflint’, C17.
    • 179v: cancelled marginalia.
    • 181v inverted: beginning of an indenture, C17.
    • 182v: cancelled marginalia.
    • 183v: two cancelled memos: ‘[…] Thomas brown de Assen  in comit[…] fflint yeoman de Johannes shone eadd[…] comitatus  teneri […] et obligate me […] shone de eade comitatu he[…] […] Administratores et assignes […] de  eade partes William sho[…] […] moore’, ‘[…] me Johannes Mayson de Assend in Comitat fflint […]’, C17.
    • 184v: cancelled memo: ‘[…] me Thomas B[…] de Assen […] fflint […]de Johannes Shone eade Comitatu […] et obliga[…] monto de Johannes Shone de moore’, cancelled memo, C17.
    •  ‘printing was firste inuented in Germanie at mayunze in the yeare of or redemption a 1458 & was brought into England in the yeare of or lord 1471’, C16-17.
    • 185v: cancelled marginalia; ‘George Ellis’, C17; ‘Aldensey’, ‘Jo tomand of Bu[…]’, ‘tomand till death J will’, C17; ‘Stephen Parmeneus’, ‘Steph [multiple times] stephanus’, C17; ‘thos […] parmei’, C17; pen drawings of beasts; inverted: ‘Jho Richard […]’, C17; cancelled memo, ‘england blesse’, C17.
    • 186r: genealogies of the Saxon and Scottish kings, C17.
    • 186v: religious maxim, C16; cancelled marginalia, inverted cancelled marginalia. 
  • Glosses and underlining:
    • C16 and C17 glosses on nearly every fol. (in Latin on 1r, 114v).
  • Immediate Ownership(s) / Patronage:
  • Later ownership(s): C16: William Jones; C17: George Ellis.
  • Affiliations: (geo-)political, institutional etc: prob. in legal context with John and William Shone, C17.
  • Language(s); translation activities: some glosses in Latin
  • Dialect:
  • LALME vol., page, LP, grid no.:
  • Locality: region; household (secular/religious) urban / rural: places mentioned in C17 memos are

Intertextual relations:

  • Textual descent: Matheson ‘Extended Version’, group EV-1419:B. See Matheson, PB, pp.188-189.
  • Evidence of exemplar:
  • Intra-textual relations to texts in same MS:
  • Extra-textual to other books, texts, traditions:
  • Decoration:
  • Translation, language:

Credits and acknowledgments:

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

Select Bibliography for this MS:



Takamiya Fragments


NLW MS Add. 442D
CUL MS Add. 2775
CUL MS Ff.2.26
Edinburgh University Library MS 185
University of Glasgow Library MS Hunterian 230
Lincoln Cathedral MS 98
BL MS Add. 24859
BL MS Harley 4827
Bodl. MS Rawl. poet. 32
Trinity College MS 5


University of Virginia MS 38-173


Most of the cancelled memos are either inverted or in the outer verso margin, and are in the same hand, poss. a legal secretary working for John and William Shone of Moore. There are villages called Ashton and Moore near Runcorn, in Cheshire, although one would expect ‘Ashend’ and Moore to be in Flintshire.

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