Bodleian Library, MS. Laud Misc. 550

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Production Practicalities and Reception Issues:

checked against microfilm

  • Pressmark / Name of  Book: Bodl. MS Laud Misc. 550 [SC I, 1375]
  • Matheson no:156
  • Date(s): C15
  • Type of book: Brut Chronicle
  • Manuscript or print?: MS
  • No of items: 1
  • Contents: Brut chronicle, fols. 1-120v.
  • Writing support:
  • Watermark?:
  • Book Construction: Folio, Quarto etc.
  • Collation:
    • No of leaves: v +125 fols, five (prob. paper) flyleaves at front foliated i-v, and five at end, fols. 121-125.
    • Quires: i-vii8;viii7; ix-xvi8; fol. 120 is a singleton.
    • Foliation: C17? Poss. by secretary of Archbishop Laud?, top right corner.
    • Composite MS? no
    • Booklets?:
    • Catchwords? (on which fols?): 8v, 16v, 24v, 32v, 40v, 48v, 56v, 63v, 71v, 79v, 87v, 95v, 103v, 111v, 119v.
    • Quire signatures? (where?): none visible
    • Damage?: fol. 120 mutilated
  • Page layout:

a. ruling: (ink or drypoint?). prob. drypoint; prickings visible (e.g on fols. 44-45).
b. columns: 1
c. lines: variable, 30-32.

  • Ink:
  • Dimensions: (approx.: taken from microfilm).
    • front board: 250 x 180mm
    • Folio / page: 237 x 178 mm
    • Writing space: 173 x 118 mm
  • Binding: Prob. leather; 5 raised bands; tooled, with (prob. gilt) plate; 2 clasps;  poss. C17, for Laud’s library?
  • Decoration?:
  • Artist?:
  • No. of Scribes: 1
  • Named scribes?:
  • Hand date; style; version; holograph, autograph?: C15 Secretary.
  • Hand, rubrication in other MSS?:
  • Compiler?:
  • Rubrication, sigla: two line caps at chapter headings, prob. in red; coloured chapter headings (prob. in red); sidenotes denoting chapter numbers rubricated (prob. in red), often with Latin glosses; ends of sentences rubricated (prob. in red) in the same style as sidenotes; proper names underlined (prob. in red);
  • Biobibliographical information: marginalia, glosses, signatures, compiler/ scribe / owner / authorial identification:
    • Flyleaf ir: Latin note C 16
    • Flyleaf iir: ‘liber Ricardi St Georg norroy 1605 fero et spero’
    • Flyleaf Vv: ‘Liber Guihelm laud Archipi Cantuari Et Cancellary Universitatis Oxon 1636’
    • Fol. 77r: Latin note, begins ‘amor vincit omnia [etc]’ C15?
    •  Fol. 80v: ‘in the beginning of march’ C16
    • fol. 94v-95r, ‘and for’, ‘and sir’, ‘he was so’ prob. pen trials, C15?
    • Fol. 96r: Latin note ‘amor vincit omnia’, see fol. 77r
    • Fol. 124v: Latin note ‘Si deus [etc]’ C17 poss, Laud or his secretary?
    • End pastedown: ‘he is a foll’, C17; Monogram with initials T M and letters AR EE in scroll surmounted by fleur-de-lys, C16-17?
  • Glosses and underlining:
    • English glosses on fols.: 2r, 3r-v, 4v, 5r, 8v-10r, 11r-14v, 15v, 17r-v, 19r, 20r, 23r-v, 25r, 26r-v, 28r, 32r-v, 35r, 36v, 37r, 38v, 40v-41v, 42v, 46r, 47r, 50r, 51r, 52r-v, 58r, 60r, 62r, 68r, 92r, 98r. Mostly in a C16 hand, some C17 (poss. Laud?).
    • Underlining on fols.: 9r-v, 10r, 11v, 13r-v, 14v, 38v, 40v, 41r-v, 42v, 46r, 56v. Mostly next to glosses by C16 hand.
    • Erasure or strikethrough of text at fols.: 14r, 31v, 61v, 62r-64v (‘pope’ ‘ape’), 67v (‘saint’ erased), 98v.
  • Immediate Ownership(s) / Patronage:
  • Later ownership(s): Richard St. George, 1605; Archbishop William Laud 1636.
  • Affiliations: (geo-)political, institutional etc: Richard St. George, Norroy herald; William Laud Archbishop of Canterbury and Chancellor of Oxford University.
  • Language(s); translation activities:
  • Dialect:
  • LALME vol., page, LP, grid no.:
  • Locality: region; household (secular/religious) urban / rural:


Intertextual relations:

  • Textual descent: Matheson ‘Peculiar Version’, group PV-1422:A  . See PB, pp. 271-272.
  • Evidence of exemplar: blank spaces at fols.: 51r (1/2 fol.), 52v (1/2 fol.), 55v (1/2 fol.), 58r (1/4 fol.), 89r (7/8 of fol.), 112r (1/2 fol.), 112v (completely blank), 120v (1/2 fol. but end of text).
  • Intra-textual relations to texts in same MS:
  • Extra-textual to other books, texts, traditions: closely related textually to the Latin Brut and to two other Matheson groups: PV-1437:A and PV-1437/1461). See PB, 271.
  • Decoration:
  • Translation, language:


Credits and acknowledgments:

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

Select Bibliography for this MS:


TCD MSS 505, 506
Takamiya MS 18

NLW MS 21608D
TCC MS 0.11.11
BL MS Sloane 2027
College of Arms MS Arundel 8
Notts County Council MS DDFS 3/1
Bodl. MS Rawlinson Poet.32
Bodl. MS Lyell 34

Cambridge, Mass.
Harvard University MSS Eng. 750
Univ. of Illinois MS 82

Kingsford, Charles L., ed., Chronides of London (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1905), p. 128.

Secondary Texts:
Gransden, Antonia, Historical Writing in England II c. 1307 to the Early Sixteenth Cen­tury (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1982), pp. 228-230.

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