London, British Library, Cotton Vitellius A. xix Bede, ''Vita S. Cuthberti" (prose and verse)

Main Article Content

Katherine O'Brien O'Keeffe


252. London, British Library, Cotton Vitellius A. xix

Bede, ''Vita S. Cuthberti" (prose and verse)

[Ker 217, Gneuss 401, Lowe 2.184]

HISTORY: The main texts in the manuscript are Bede's prose and verse Lives of Saint Cuthbert, to which have been added an excerpt from Bede's "Historia ecclesiastica," miscellaneous epigrams, a prose note on the "Six Ages of Man," and neumed alleluia texts. Lapidge (1995: 143) describes the manuscript (his Siglum V) as "written in one of the mid-century phases of Anglo-Saxon Square minuscule script, and hence is dateable to c. 950." Dumville (1994: 139) characterizes the main script ofVitellius A. xix as phase II Anglo-Saxon Square minuscule, which he would date to the 930s. Ker (Cat.) notes that Vitellius A. xix comes from the same house as BL, Cotton Cleopatra A. iii [184] because each book was bound with a flyleaf from the same late-8c manuscript, Augustine, "De consensu evangelistarum" (cf. Lowe 1972: item 184). Bishop (1963: 93) connects Vitellius A. xix and Cleopatra A. iii to a group of manuscripts from St. Augustine's, Canterbury, of which Cambridge, Trinity College, B. 11. 2 (241) [77] is the chief, on the basis of the work of a common scribe. He also connects Vitellius A. xix to Harley 1117 [268] (see also Rollason [1989: 419] on the relationship of Vitellius A. xix to Harley 1117 and Cambridge, Corpus Christi College 183 [36]). Vitellius A. xix, Harley 1117, and Vatican City, Reg. lat. 204 [477] share a core of 13 glosses to the verse "Life" (Ker, Cat., 283). In the 16c,John Leland made occasional marginal notes on names and, according to Sheerin (1977), "meagre extracts" from Vitellius A. xix in his "Collectanea" (Cotton Julius C. vi; pr. Hearne 1774: 3.157-60). The manuscript was owned by Sir Robert Cotton whose autograph appears on f. 9r.

Article Details

Manuscript Descriptions