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Fragments of a French Bible, late 13th century

Identifier: MS 211/III

Scope and Contents

Bible. F. 1: end of Genesis 50:24-25 (begins: ossa mea de loco sito; ends: in loculo in egypto), rubric (Explicit liber geneseos Incipit liber exodos), beginning of Exodus 1:1-5:18 (begins: Heac sunt nomina filiorum Israhel; ends: palee non dabuntur vobis et reddetis con). F. 2: Exodus 39-40 (begins: de iacincto vero et purpura vermiculo ac bysso fecit vestes quibus indueretur Aaron; ends: et ignis in nocte videntibus populis Israhel per cunctas mansiones suas), rubric (Explicit liber exodi. Incipit liber leviticus), Leviticus 1:1-4:9 (begins: Vocavit autem moysen et loquutus est ei Dominus; ends: quam omnia quae intrinsecus sunt duos renunculos). F. 3 and 4 belong to the same page, top part badly cropped: 1 John 2:27-5:21 (begins: docuit vos [...] fiduciam et [...] tis quoniam iustus [...] sticiam ex eo; ends: filioli custodite vos a simulacris), rubric (Explicit epistula sancti iohannis prima. Incipit epistula eiusdem iohannis secunda), 2 John 1:1-4 (begins: Senior electe Domine et natis eius; ends: Salutant te filii sororis tue electe), rubric (Explicit epistola iohannis secunda. Incipit epistola iohannis tertia), 3 John 1:1-4 (begins: [...]nior gaio karissimo [...]em ego diligo [...] itate karissime; ends: Saluta tu amicos nominatum), rubric (Explicit epistula Iohannis tertia. Incipit epistula sancti iude), Jude 1:1-7 (begins: Iudas Ihesu Christi servis frater autem iacobi hiis qui in Deo Patre dilectus; ends: et abeuntes post carnem alter).


The script shows French workmanship at its best. The hand is small, clear, and uniform, the ink black and lustrous, the vellum of the finest. The decorative initials also show French workmanship. They show the usual type of spiral floriation with small animal heads, executed in blue, lake, vermilion and buff on burnished gold ground. The initial at the beginning of Leviticus (f. 2) is historiated, showing Moses horned and nimbed,the Tables of the Law in his hand, the head of the deity in a cruciform nimbus in the upper corner. The smaller filigree initials are also good.


  • Creation: late 13th century

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open to all. The manuscripts can be consulted in the Centre for Research Collections, Edinburgh University Main Library.


3 folios

Physical Facet

Material: Vellum


21.91 cm x 15.88 cm

Lines to a page

double columns, 53 lines to a page

Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
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Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
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