Princeton University Library, Garret MS. 150

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Production Practicalities and Reception Issues:

checked against microfilm

  • Pressmark / Name of  Book: Princeton MS Garret 150
  • Matheson no.: 119
  • Date(s): C15
  • Type of book: Brut Chronicle             
  • Manuscript or print?: MS
  • No of items: 1
  • Contents: Brut chronicle, fols. 2r-157r.
  • Writing support: parchment
  • Watermark?:
  • Book Construction: Folio, Quarto etc.
  • Collation: tentative, from microfilm:
    • No of leaves: i + 157 + iii fol. i is an original flyleaf; the unfoliated leaves at the end of the ms would appear to be the end of a quire rather than flyleaves used in binding, and there is no pastedown at the back.
    • Blank leaves:
    • Quires: i-xx8
    • Foliation: mod. pencil, top right corner.
    • Composite MS? no
    • Booklets?: no
    • Catchwords? (on which fols?): 8v, 16v, 24v, 32v, 40v, 48v, 56v, 64v, 72v, 80v, 88v, 96v, 104v, 112v, 120v, (126v?), 128v, 136v, 144v, 152v.   
    • Quire signatures? (where?): quires signed on leading edges, a-v i-iiij.
    • Damage?: fol. 1 fragmentary: top, outer and bottom margins torn away with loss of text.
  • Page layout:

a. ruling: (ink or drypoint?)frames and lines, prob. in ink
b. columns: 1
c. lines: 38

  • Ink:
  • Dimensions:
    • front board:
    • Folio / page:
    • Writing space:
  • Binding: appears from film to be original, C15, leather over (prob. wooden boards); 3 pairs of leather thongs recessed into back board; 6 raised bands.
  • Decoration?:
  • Artist?:
  • No. of Scribes: 1
  • Named scribes?: no, but note letter ‘R’ in decorated descender loop (under letter ‘g’, word ‘englond’) on fol. 102v.
  • Hand date; style; version; holograph, autograph?: C15 Secretary. Double-compartment ‘a’; single-compartment ‘g’, single ascender ‘d’; Secretary ‘w’ and ‘v’; both ‘r’-shaped and ‘2’-shaped ‘r’, frequently dots voids of letters (e.g. fol. 7v, l. 12, ‘Quene’).
  • Hand, rubrication in other MSS?: comp. Cambridge, Corpus Christi MS 182 scribe A.
  • Compiler?:
  • Rubrication, sigla: fol. 1r: remains of a bar border can be discerned in the inner margin, with floral sprays, prob. in colours; 64v (William Bastard): 7-line solid cap, prob. in gold, on background, prob. in colours, with sprays into margins, prob. in colours; rest of ms: 3-line solid caps with pen flourishing into margin, prob. in red and blue; chapter headings, prob. in red, sometimes with 1-line caps and spiral line markers, prob. in red; occasional side notes, prob. in red; paraphs in text, prob. in red; ascenders of top line letters extended into top margin, and occasionally flourished elaborately with strapwork; descenders of bottom line letters sometimes extended and flourished with strapwork or loops and dashes; descender of bottom line ‘g’ often split into 2, sometimes with ‘g’ in loops.
  • Biobibliographical information: marginalia, glosses, signatures, compiler/ scribe / owner / authorial identification:
    • Front pastedown: ‘john’, C15; ‘henry’, C16; pressmark; ‘Arthure’, C15; pen trials.
    • Front flyleaf (ir): ‘jhus’, C15; ‘jhos kolle’, ‘ambo pathem’, C15; ‘harty / john’, C15.
    • Front flyleaf (i verso): religious maxims in Latin, C15; pressmark: ‘W 366317’.
    • 53r: pen trials.
    • 60v: ‘H[ery?] Walter’, C16?
    • 68v ‘right wylbelouued’, C16.
    • 84r: ‘octo’, C19?
    • 126v: catchword, prob. added later, C16?
    • 137r: ‘Wyllm lamond’, C15-16.
    • 157v: ‘Parentes venerere / Amicos dilige / deum cole / bonis benefaction / constantam serua [‘per me’ erased twice] per me henricius druri’, C16-17.
    • Back flyleaf (i verso): ‘Robard’, C16; pen trials.
    • Back flyleaf (ii r): pen drawing of heraldic arms: bend sinister with two birds in left side and three birds in right side; pen drawing of griffin?
    • Back flyleaf (ii verso): ‘Syr Thomas Bourgyer Knight’, C15; Latin maxims, C15.
    • Back flyleaf (iii r): ‘T Bourgchier’, C15; ‘John sulyerd’, C15; 5 lines of verse, C15; Latin maxims, C15; ‘john prestemen’ (twice), C15; pen trials.
    • Religious maxims in Latin, C15; ‘wyllyam’, C15; 19 lines of verse, C15.
  • Glosses and underlining:
    • C17 glosses on fol. 2v.
    • C20 gloss on fols. 17r; 47r, 68r, 72r, 73r, 90v, 91r.
  • Immediate Ownership(s) / Patronage: poss. John Sulyard, C15
  • Later ownership(s): C15: John Sulyard, Thomas Bourchier.
  • Affiliations: (geo-)political, institutional etc: Sulyard was Justice of the King’s Bench, Bourchier was Constable of Leeds Castle.
  • Language(s); translation activities:
  • Dialect:
  • LALME vol., page, LP, grid no.:
  • Locality: region; household (secular/religious) urban / rural: poss. London, urban, secular.

Intertextual relations:

  • Textual descent: Matheson ‘Extended Version’, group EV-1419:C. See Matheson, PB, pp. 197, 199-200.
  • 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 J O’R. Textual descent based on Matheson, PB.

Select Bibliography for this MS:



Corpus Christi College MS 182
TCC MS O.9.1
Society of Antiquaries MS 223
Bodl. MS Laud Misc. 571


University of Illinois MS 116
San Marino
Huntington MS HM 133

Secondary Texts:
Bennett, Adelaide, Jean F. Preston, and William P. Stoneman, A Summary Guide to Western Manuscripts at Princeton University (Princeton: Princeton University Library, 1991), p. 45.

Boffey, Julia, Manuscripts of English Courtly Love Lyrics in the Later Middle Ages (Woodbridge: Brewer, 1985), p. 122-23, and nn. 29, 30.

Meale, Carol M, ‘Patrons, Buyers and Owners: Book Production and Social Status’, in Book Production and Publishing in Britain 1375-1475,ed. by Jere­my Griffiths and Derek Pearsall (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989), 201-38, pp. 216, 233 and n. 87.

_____, ‘“… alle the bokes that I haue of latyn, englisch, and frensch”: Lay­women and Their Books in Late Medieval England’, in Women and Lit­erature in Britain 1150-1500,ed. by Carol M. Meale, 2nd edn (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 128-58, pp. 142-43.


The scribe of this MS and Cambridge Corpus Christi MS 182 are very similar, not only in their handwriting but also in their decoration. I am doubtful that the two mss are by the same scribe, unless written after many small changes had occurred in the scribe’s script (which is far from impossible). The similarities in decoration suggest a common milieu of production, perhaps a ‘house style’. It is probably significant that both texts are from the same subgroup of the Extended Version. Spellings in the two texts vary considerably from each other.

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