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A translation or rather paraphrase of the Memorabilia of Valerius Maximus, with additions and notes, written in the 15th cent.

MS. Douce 203
Held at the Weston Library

  • Request

Distinguished by the heading 'translateur', as opposed to the paraphrase which is headed 'Atteur', i.e. auteur. The following colophons explain the work, which was begun 'en honneur et reuerence de' Henry V of France (fol. 1v, see miniature on fol. 1):--at end of bk. vii, ch. 4 (fol. 124), 'Jusques yci dure la translacion ... faite par maistre Symon de Hesdin ... Et commence la translacion de maistre Nicole de Gonnesse qui ce present liure paracheva ...': at end of bk. ix (fol. 262v) 'Par laide diuine ... est la translacion ... terminee, laquelle commenca ... maistre Symon de Haydin ... qui poursuy jusques au vije liure ou chapitre des stratagemes & la laissa cort . Des la en auant ... je. N. de Gonnesse maistre es ars et en theologie ay poursuy la ditte translacion ... Et fu finee lan mil cccc & J. la veille saint Michiel larchangele. Deo gracias.'

Other MSS. have similar colophons. Some of the miniatures have half-erased directions to the artist as to his design, written with a metal stylus on the lower margin: but in most cases these have been rubbed out.


  • Creation: written in the 15th cent.


265 leaves, in double columns

Language of Materials

  • French


MS. Douce 203

Other Finding Aids

Falconer Madan, et al., A summary catalogue of western manuscripts in the Bodleian Library at Oxford which have not hitherto been catalogued in the Quarto series (7 vols. in 8 [vol. II in 2 parts], Oxford, 1895-1953; reprinted, with corrections in vols. I and VII, Munich, 1980), vol. IV, no 21777

Our best descriptions for medieval items in this collection are in Medieval Manuscripts in Oxford Libraries under MSS. Douce.

Custodial History

This MS. was in the library of the Duc de La Valliere (sale catal. 1783, iii. 383, no. 5654): then belonged to John Towneley whose armorial bookplate is in each volume.

Physical Facet

On parchment, with many fine miniatures and illuminated capitals


15 1/4 × 12 in.

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom