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MS 126: Kalendar and Astronomical Tables, late 15th century [1482?]

Identifier: MS 126
Kalendar and Astronomical Tables (MS 126)
Kalendar and Astronomical Tables (MS 126)


This manuscript was created in Scotland in the late 15th century, possibly around 1482 as that is the date of the Kalendar. The Kalendar is Cistercian, and the manuscript belonged to the Cistercian Priory of Coupar-Angus. After the Kalendar, which provides the important dates in the liturgical year, there are many charts and diagrams related to astrology.
The contents are as follows:
f. 1r: A Poem by Saint Bernard. It is titled In capite ejus corona stellarum XII and starts with the words Prima stella est memoria sine oblivione. It ends with est videre denon diligentem se. Hie Bernardus.
ff. 1v-7r: The Kalendar with astronomical tables for the year 1482. It is Cistercian and of Coupar.
Various Tables and Diagrams start on f. 7v and end on f. 24r. They appear as follows:
f. 7v: Tabula signorum ad sciendum in quo signo luna sit cotidi
f. 8r: A Tabula ad sciendum quis planeta regat qualis hora diei
ff. 8v-9r: Tables and Rotae for the Dominical Letters and Golden Numbers
f. 9v: Table of Golden Numbers
f. 10r: Easter Tables
ff. 10v-12v: Table of Movable Feasts with explanations
ff. 13r-18v: Astronomical Tables for the years 1475, 1494, 1513 with Zodiacal Tables
ff. 19v-20r: Lunar Signs
f. 20v: A Tabula Regionum
ff. 21r-23r: Table of Eclipses of the Sun and Moon from 1482-1530
ff. 23v-24r: Tabula Quantitatis Dieru
Explanations of the Previous Tables start on f. 24v and end on f. 31r. They appear as follows:
ff. 24v-25r: Declaratio premissorum
f. 25v: De Tabula Regionum
f. 26r: De eclipsibus luminarium
f. 26v: De magnitudine diei
f. 27r: De Aureo Numero
ff. 27r-27v: De ciclo solari et littera dominicali
f. 27v: De indictione
ff. 27v-28r: De loco solis vero
ff. 28v-29v: Concerning the date of Easter (without rubric)
ff. 30r-31r: De loco lune vero (with diagram)
Some more Diagrams and Tables are on ff. 31v-32v. They are as follows:
f. 31v: Scala latitudinum
f. 32r: Instrumentum horarum inequalium sive temporalium
f. 32v: Instrumentum veri motus lune
f. 33r: Tabula Radicum Lune
f. 33v: Quadratum horarium generale
More Explanations start on f. 35r and end on f. 39r. They are as follows:
ff. 34v-36r: De horologio orizontali (with diagram)
ff. 36r-37r: De noticia horarium ecquinoctialium
ff. 37r-38r: De horis temporalibus
ff. 38v-39r: De Tempore incisioni venarum apto (with a diagram of blood letting locations on the body.)
f. 39v: Another Tabula, titled Tabula diei Pashce infallibilis
f. 40r: An Unidentified Text. It starts with the words Dicta quaedam fratris Bartholomei Cartusiensis in Ruremondo de adventu Anticristi incipiunt feliciter.
Writing Written in fair script by more than one hand, the Kalendar being rather carelessly written. ff. 1v-20v all seem to be written in the same hand. ff. 21r-40r are in a differnt hand that is largely consistent, with a few exceptions (such as ff.30v-31r and 40r).
Illumination There are many diagrams, and one pen-drawing from the 16th century on f. 9v.


  • late 15th century [1482?]

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.


1 bound MS volume

Custodial History

The Kalendar is Cistercian with a few Scottish entries. The book belonged to the Cistercian Priory of Coupar-Angus, according to the 15th century inscription on f. 1: Liber beate Marie de Cupro.
The Cistercian Saints and Feasts commemorated are: 10 January: Saint William of William of Donjeon; 11 January: Commemoratio Episcoporum; 29 April: Saint Robert of Molesme (Abbot); 8 May: Saint Peter of Tarantaise (Bishop); 20 May: Commemoratio Monachonim; 11 August: Feast of the Crown of Thorns; 20 August: Saint Bernard of Clairvaux; 27 August, October: Saint Bernard; 12 September: Capitulum Generalis; 5 November: Saint Malachy; 9 December: Commemoratio Fundatorum.
Local Saints and Feasts are: 15 May: Dedicatio; 23 September: Saint Adomnan; 4 December: Medani; 7 December, October: Andree; 30 December: Saint Duthac. These may have special reference to Coupar-Angus, but there is the same lack of Scottish names in the Kalendar that one finds in the Kalendar of the Culross Psalter (Advocates' Library MS. 18. S. 11., now at the National Library of Scotland), also Cistercian.
For its later history we have a pencil entry on f. 40 (Ex Orcadibus eduxi 1599 Jo. Foulis), and two inscriptions in Drummond's hand on f. 1 (Academiae Jacobi Regis Edinb. Giilielmus Drummond, D.D.) and f. 40 (Academiae Jacobi Regis Edinb. Gulielmus Drummond, D.D. 1626).

Previous reference

D. e. 3. 3.

Previous title

Title given to the manuscript in Catherine Borland’s catalogue: Kalendar and Astronomical Tables, etc..

Physical Facet

Material: Vellum

Binding: Modern, with Drummond of Hawthornden stamp in gold, lettered 'Kalendarium Liber MS. Beatae Mariae de Cupro.'

Collation: a12, b3, c7 (wants 5), d7, e6, f5=40


17.15 cm x 14.92 cm


Secundo folio: 1482
Foliation and number of lines to a page: ff. 40, irregular number of 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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