BEINECKE RARE BOOK AND MANUSCRIPT LIBRARY
GENERAL COLLECTION OF RARE BOOKS AND
Marston MS 67 Eastern France, s. XII 4/4
Priscian, Grammatica minor
ff. 1r-66r Quoniam in ante expositis libris de partibus orationis in
plerisque [gloss above: multis] apollonij sumus auctoritatem secuti.
Aliorum quoque siue nostrorum [gloss: scilicet latinorum] siue
grecorum...Sed postquam intus sum omnium rerum satior. f. 66r-v
miscellaneous pen trials, notes, doodles, including the statement:
"malum est perdere propter perdidisse dixit socrates," a chart on the
"Septem artes," and a note on childbirth ("Vt mulier cito pariat...").
H. Keil, ed., Grammatici latini (Leipzig, 1855-70) v. 3, pp. 107-377.
This manuscript cited by M. Gibson, "Priscian, Institutiones
grammaticae: A Handlist of Manuscripts," Scriptorium 26 (1972) p. 116,
and M. Passalacqua, I codici di Prisciano (Rome, 1978) p. 193, no. 430.
The text here is accompanied by extensive interlinear and marginal glosses
in ink and lead, with the most densely written marginalia dating from the
second half of the 13th century. A contemporary hand, probably the
original scribe, signalled the examples cited from classical authors by
placing letters (many lost due to trimming) in the outer margins of
leaves: v for Vergil, t for Terence, ho for Horace,
l for Lucan,
Parchment (end pieces, worn, repaired), ff. 66, 241 x 172 (168 x 95)
mm. 31 long lines. Single vertical bounding lines and an additional
vertical ruling in outer margin; double upper horizontal bounding lines.
Ruled in lead or crayon. Remains of prickings in upper and lower margins.
I-VIII 8, IX 2 (leaves not conjugate). Quires signed with Roman
numerals on ff. 1v (i) and 2r (ii).
Written by a single scribe in early gothic bookhand, above top line.
8-line initial [later addition?], f. 1r, red with crude penwork designs
in red and black; biting the letter is a grotesque stretched across upper
margin, outlined in black with details in red. Small initials in red
and/or black: ff. 17v, 31r, 35v, etc. Paragraph marks, initial strokes,
and lines drawn through text passages written in Greek, all in red.
Some marginalia lost due to trimming and rubbing.
Binding: France, s. xiii [?]. Original sewing (except for the first
few gatherings) on three tawed skin, slit straps laced through tunnels in
the edge to the outside of quarter sawn [?] oak boards, almost flush, and
fastened with rectangular, angled wedges. Blue/green and natural color
chevron endbands are sewn on tawed skin cores. There is a strip of tawed
skin extending a short distance on the outside of the boards and turned
in at head and tail. The boards are edged with white, tawed skin and an
outer cover is whip stitched to this edging. There is no adhesive on the
spine and the cover is held in place by the endbands. The outer cover
probably extended and has been cut off flush. Needle holes along the
inner edge of the back board fore-edge turn-in. There are traces of two
strap-and-pin fastenings, the pins on the lower board. Hole bored on the
tail and fore edge of the front board does not seem to serve any purpose.
Written in Eastern France in the fourth quarter of the 12th century;
extensive annotations and hastily drawn sketches in margin indicate it was
used for more than a century as a school text. Early inscription of
Jacques de Vitry (ca. 1170-1240) states that he purchased the book in
Paris, presumably second-hand, since the note is written over an erasure
in upper margin, f. 1r: "Iste pricianus est Iakobi de vitriaco emptus
parisius [3 or 4?] 2 d." Early press-mark (contemporary with binding?)
on back turn-in: the number "12" in a diamond with a cross at each point.
"609" in ink on upper board and front pastedown. Small rectangular paper
label with "41" written in ink, on spine. Round label with saw-toothed
edge: "S II 7/ Priscinian [sic]/ MS XII/ 4 o 75549." Purchased from B.
M. Rosenthal (Cat. 1, no. 83, with plate of f. 65r) in 1954 by Thomas E.
secundo folio: Ego ne illam
Bibliography: Faye and Bond, p. 72, no. 67.
The Medieval Book, pp. 95-96, no. 92, with plate of ff. 9v-10r.
Barbara A. Shailor