BEINECKE RARE BOOK AND MANUSCRIPT LIBRARY
GENERAL COLLECTION OF RARE BOOKS AND
MEDIEVAL AND RENAISSANCE MANUSCRIPTS
Marston MS 168 Northern Italy, s. XV med
Gasparino Barzizza, Commentarii in epistolas Senecae
ff. 1r-338r Avisti [sic] heri nobiscum et cet. hec est 65a epistola
que sic potest ad precedentem epistolam continuari. Postquam superius
nactus occasionem...honestissimis actibus et pulcherrimis sapientissimorum
hominum. Sed ante omnes huius amplissimi et sanctissimi viri Senece fluxit.
etc. Expliciunt commentarij Gasparini pergamensis in epistolas senece
etc. ff. 338v-340v blank
Gasparino Barzizza, Commentary on Epistolae morales ad Lucilium, 65-124
only; f. 272v (in Epistle 115) blank with note "uacat." Marston
MS 168 not discussed in L. A. Panizza, "Gasparino Barzizza's Commentaries
on Seneca's Letters," Traditio 33 (1977) pp. 297-358.
Paper (polished; watermarks: similar to Briquet Tour 15909 and Piccard
Turm II.617), ff. ii (contemporary paper; watermarks: Briquet Lettre T
9120) + 340 + ii (same paper as front flyleaves), 335 x 230 (205 x 123) mm.
43 long lines. Single vertical bounding lines (Derolez 13.11), ruled in
crayon or lead. Rulings for text in lead. Prickings in upper and lower
margins; two additional prickings in outer margin below top and just above
bottom lines of written space.
I-XXXIV 10. Catchwords, mostly trimmed, along edge of lower margin near
gutter, verso (Derolez 12.4). Remains of quire and leaf signatures (e.g.,
a 1, a 2, a 3, etc.) in lower right corner, recto.
Written in gothic cursive with humanistic features by a single scribe,
above top line.
Illuminated initial, f. 1r, 8-line, blue with white highlights and
burnished gold on gold ground with stylized foliage in green and dark red with
yellow highlights. Terminals ending in foliage serifs, red, green with yellow
highlights, and gold balls with hairline extensions. Numerous pen and
ink initials, 3-line, alternate red and bright blue with penwork designs of the
other color extending along margin.
Binding: Italy, s. xv. Parchment stays are adhered to inner and
outer conjugate leaves of quires. Original wound sewing on three tawed
skin, slit straps laid in channels on the outside of beech boards. The
endbands, which are wanting, were sewn on tawed skin cores laid in grooves
and nailed or held in place by the bosses; they were tied down through a
tawed skin spine lining.
Covered in sheepskin, originally brick red, with the surface now badly
rubbed and shedding. Corner tongues. Blind-tooled with an X in
concentric frames. Four leaf-shaped catches with three flowers on each on
the lower board, one wanting; the upper board cut in for two kermes pink
straps attached with star-headed nails. Five flower-shaped bosses on each
board and the trace of a chain attachment at the tail of the lower one.
Written in Northern Italy in the middle of the 15th century, probably as the
second part of a two-volume set: the text begins with Epistle 65 and
contains none of the introductory material generally found in Barzizza's
Commentaries on Seneca. Customs declaration, s. xv#2, on back pastedown:
"Aquesti libro de mosser Nicolau roujra Vicario de Munjesa. ha de pagar de
port de Roma aqui vn florjn e medio." Paper label, ca. 1800-1830, of the
hatseller [!] Francisco Tolrra of Madrid (we thank S. Sider of the Hispanic
Society of America for helping with the provenance of this manuscript).
Bookplate of the literary scholar Feliciano Ramirez de Arellano, Marques de
la Fuensanta del Valle (s. xix#2). Unidentified notes in pencil on back
pastedown, including "MS - XIV/ A. - 1 vol.;" unidentified bookplate on front
pastedown superimposed on the Tolrra ticket: Greek cross within concentric
circles. According to P. Kristeller (Iter Italicum, v. 5, p. 287, no. 168),
this manuscript was formerly "31-17" in the Capitular library at Zaragoza.
Purchased from Enzo Ferrajoli through Nicolas Rauch of Geneva
in 1958 by L. C. Witten (inv. no. 2149), who sold it the same year to Thomas E.
secundo folio: qui non seruit
Bibliography: Faye and Bond, p. 83, no. 168.
Barbara A. Shailor