Lawrence, Kansas, Kenneth Spencer Research Library Pryce MS C2:2

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A. N. Doane


154. Lawrence, Kansas, Kenneth Spencer Research Library Pryce MS C2:2 (with 385 Oxford, Bodleian Hatton 115)

Fragment of Æfric's "Sermo in natale unius confessoris"

[Ker 332 Supplement, Gneuss 639]

HISTORY: A leaf originally belonging with the collection of homilies in Bodleian Library, Hatton 115. Latter half ofl lc, probably written at Worcester and glosses by the early 13c "tremulous hand" visible on both sides. Hatton 115 consists of five booklets (Franzen 1998: 44) and was written by several hands; they were not bound up together until the 12c and the ensemble was rebound in the 17c probably after it was acquired by the Bodleian. Christopher, Lord Hatton had the manuscript (Hatton 115) before 1644, and in 1675 it went to the Bodleian. At some time a few leaves were removed, including this one, which originally belonged in the second booklet, between ff. 82 and 83, where six leaves are missing (Franzen 1998: 50 and Colgrave and Hyde 1962: 68; see below).

John Siedzik, Curator of Manuscripts of the Spencer Library, discovered the fragment pasted between the leather and the board of a copy ofKingsmill Long's translation of Barclay his Argenis (2d ed., London: Henry Seile, 1636) (STC 1395); a companion leaf treated in exactly the same way (now Pryce MS C2:2 [153]) was found in the opposite cover; their writing was identified as OE by Alexandra Mason and was removed by Max Adjarian of the Grolier Bindery, Mission, Kansas. This was accomplished a few years after the printed book had been acquired by the Spencer Library,in 1957, from Pearson's Book Rooms in Cambridge (Collins 1976: 48-49). Colgrave and Hyde (1962: 60) date the binding itself (as opposed to the printing) to ca. 1636 x 1656. The leaf had the former Spencer shelfmark of MS Y 104. It is unmounted.

[Note: "The parchment leaves of the manuscript [both C2:2 and C2:1] were cut down to the size of the boards and laid, one to a side, between the leather of the covers and the pasteboard of the boards, and pasted to the leather. Seventeenth-century binders occasionally employed this unusual technique to strengthen the extra-thin sheets of pasteboard which they used when they had a thick leather, although it is met with more often in vellum bindings than in leather ones" (Colgrave and Hyde 1962: 61 ). ]

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