Skip to main content

Collection of French and English writings, Written in the 2nd half of the 13th century in England, in several hands

MS. Selden Supra 74
Held at the Weston Library

  • Request

Fol. 1. French didactic pieces in prose and verse, a leaf or leaves being lost at the beginning:

  1. Fol. 1. the latter part of the poem of Walter de Bibbesworth on learning French, with English glosses, text beg. (imperfect) 'Plus est delit en le oriole'
  2. Fol. 2. 'Ici comence Husebondrie' [of Walter of Henley], in prose, beg. 'Li piere siet en sa veilesse & dit a soun filtz'
  3. Fol. 7. A poem sometimes called La desputeison du cors et de l' âme, beg. 'Le mois de mai en vn beau pre': ed. Stengel in Zeitschr. f. r. Phil. iv, p. 75 from this MS. [Cr.].

Fols. 10, 13. Historia sancti Neminis, a satirical prose life, founded on such texts as 'Nemo venit ad Me', 'Nemo vidit Deum': beg. 'Multifarie multisque modis karissimi':

  1. At fols. 13v, 12, is a Latin sermon, beg. 'De cuiusdam claustralis vita'
  2. Fols. 9 and 11 are parts of a list of chapters of a French moral treatise, of which the 5th distinction is 'De la ioie du ciel': some English farm accounts of about A.D. 1400 are added.

Fol. 14. After a few concluding sentences of a Latin treatise on omens from Dreams, comes 'Vita [Adam] prothoplausti & Eue vxoris eius', beg. 'Factum est cum expulsi essent

Fol. 18v. Evangelium Nicodemi: beg. 'Factum est in anno xix° Tiberij', text similar to that in MS. Bodl. 428: followed at fol. 28v by the Vindicta Salvatoris, here without title, beg. 'In diebus imperii Cesaris Tyberij ... erat quidam Tytus', and at fol. 31 by the fifteen signs of the Last Judgement, beg. 'Erunt signa in sole'.

Fol. 31v. Five moral poems printed in the Zeitschrift für französische Sprache und Literatur xiv (1892), pp. 146-158:

  1. Fol. 31v. a prayer
  2. Fol. 31v. a poem by 'frere Simun de Kermerthin i. e. of Carmarthen
  3. Fol. 33. a sermon in verse by the same
  4. Fol. 33v. a poem of courtesy
  5. Fol. 35v. a dialogue between 'Le Curtois' and 'Le Vilein'

Fol. 38. Proverbes de bon enseignement, a paraphrase in French verse of certain texts in the Vulgate which are written opposite the paraphrase, here without title: beg. 'Chiers amis receuetz de moi'. The author is given in the last stanza as 'Boun', whom Paul Meyer (Romania xiii [1884], p. 541) identifies with Nicole Bozon.

Fol. 44. 'Speculum Ecclesie, ceo est a dire Mirour de seint Eglise e si lapela seint Eadmund de Punteny ke la fit': after a list of chapters the text beg. 'Videte vocacionem vestram . Ces motz partienent a nous gentz de religion'. Besides a short Latin quaestio two pieces follow, on fol. 59v, one Latin, a metrical dialogue between a nun and a layman (beg. 'Me tibi teque mihi'), one French, a list of thirty follies (beg. 'Qi nad qi li serue & il mesmes ne veut').

Fol. 60. 'Le romaunce del Ymage du mounde', a French poem in three parts, with diagrams and a prologue describing the contents. The three divisions are cosmography, geography, and astronomy, and the author Gautier de Metz. According to the penultimate line it was composed in A. D. 1245, and the text beg. 'Qui bien ueut entendre cest liure'.

Fol. 102v. 'De statu hominis', the treatise usually entitled De contemptu mundi, by Lotharius diaconus, afterwards pope Innocent iii, in three books.

At fol. 119v follow two rather later pieces:

  1. A Latin sermon on the Passion (beg. 'Quis dabit capiti meo aquam ... ut possim flere per diem & noctem')
  2. A short chronicle of England to 1306, in French (fol. 122v: beg. 'Deuaunt la natiuite nostre Seignur mil & deus cent aunz vint Brutus le fitz Silmius en Engleterre')


  • Creation: Written in the 2nd half of the 13th century in England, in several hands


126 Leaves

Language of Materials

  • French
  • Latin


MS. Selden Supra 74


Old Selden mark = 74

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. II, no. 3462

Custodial History

Owned by Roger Yonng in the 16th cent. (fol. ii): the name 'John Somervyle' of the same century is on fol. 125v: and 'Sir Ryc. Hadele...' (15th cent.?) on fol. 14v.

Manuscript 3477 acquired by the Bodleian Library

Physical Facet

On parchment, in double columns, with illuminated capitals, etc.


8 3/4 × 6 1/2 in.

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom