Cambridge, University Library L1. 1. 10

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A. N. Doane


107. Cambridge, University Library Lt. 1. 10

"Book of Cerne," "Prayer Book of Aedeluald"

[Ker 27, Gneuss 28]

HISTORY: A composite book, containing three parts: 1) various 14c-16c memoranda of 12c-13c documents relating to the Benedictine abbey of Cerne in Dorset; 2) a private prayer book, produced in Mercia, c. 820-840; 3) an early- 15c Sequentiary from Cerne Abbey including lists of its relics. The two sequences (Part 3, items 45 and 47) dedicated to St. Edwold (reputedly the brother of St. Edmund, king and martyr) relate the collection to Cerne Abbey because Eadwold (d. 871) had a cell where the parish church now stands Oones 1952: 11). Parts 1 and 3 have lent the book its popular name. M. P. Brown (1996: 34-35, 37-38) argues from physical evidence that the Cerne materials perhaps only became associated with the 9c prayer book well after the 16c and that 1) and 2) may have been once bound together, the present configuration stemming only from the time the manuscript reached Cambridge or later. The prayer book must be compared with three southern/western English private prayer books of the late-Sc/ early-9c in the British Library, having similar size and contents: Harley 2965 (271] ("The Book of Nunnaminster"); the fragmentary Harley 7653 (279]; and Royal 2. A. xx (283] (Sims-Williams 1990: 275-79). Acrostic on f. 21r spells 'AEDELVALD EPISCOPVS', most probably a reference to Bishop Aethelwold of Lichfield (818-830), though it has been argued that at least the texts trace back to Bishop Aethelwald of Lindisfarne (d. 740) (Dumville 1972); at f. 87v/15 is the nearly effaced inscription 'hoc argumentum fosoru<m> oeoelwal├░ epis<copus> decerpsit' (visible in UV), which may or may not be the same person. The manuscript belonged to John Moore, bishop of Norwich and Ely (1646-1714), by 1697, since it is included as such in Bernard's catalogue ([Bernard] 1697: 2.364, no. 9299); Moore's extensive library (1,790 manuscripts, 29,000 printed books) was purchased by King George I and given to Cambridge University in 1715. CUL Hh. 3. 11 is another book owned by Moore that contains 14c Cerne-related materials. Part 3 may have accreted to the manuscript after 1697 since Bernard does not mention it (M. P. Brown 1996: 29, 37-38). Webb in 1900 reported that Part 1 consisted "of a number of loose leaves, which at present are wrapped up in paper and tied to the former [i.e. Parts 2 and 3]" (Webb 1900: 158). Rebound in 1780s (Bowtell) and 1962 (Cockerell) [the film antedates the 1962 rebinding] .

[Note: Bernard's 1697 catalogue entry is "Codices ManuscriptiJohannis Mori episcop Norvic. 9299.113 Magna Carta. 2. Oratio Augustini ante missam. 3. Quaedam monasterium de Cerne spectantia. 4. Lectiones quaedam Evangelicae charactere Saxonico tempore Paschali recitari in Ecclesiis solitae. 5. Preces aliquot latinae, e quibus una lingua Saxonica inter lineas concipitur. Codex membr. 4to."]

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