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Barlow Manuscripts


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Miscellaneous manuscripts collected by Thomas Barlow. The manuscripts, chiefly medieval, include Latin, English, Middle English, Italian, Greek and Russian.


  • Creation: 10th-17th century


6.05 Linear metres (55 boxes)

Language of Materials

  • Latin
  • English
  • English, Middle (1100-1500)
  • Italian
  • Greek, Ancient (to 1453)
  • Russian

Preferred Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MSS. Barlow 1].

Please see our help page for further guidance on citing archives and manuscripts.

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. Barlow 1-55

Collection ID (for staff)

CMD ID 12781


Thomas Barlow's manuscripts collection.

Biographical / Historical

Thomas Barlow, a Westmorland man, was born in 1607. He was educated at the Queen's College, whence he took his BA degree in 1630, becoming MA and fellow in 1633. In 1653 he was elected Bodley's Librarian, and four years later became provost of his college. He resigned the librarianship in 1660 to become Lady Margaret Professor, and became Bishop of Lincoln in 1675. He died in 1691. Devoted to learning, Barlow was vociferously Protestant, but casuistical, and politically a trimmer.

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, nos. 6413-6490.

Other Finding Aids

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

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The manuscripts were bequeathed to the Library by Barlow in 1691.

The following items were recorded in the Summary Catalogue as being part of the collection but having "never came":

  1. SC no. 6432: Parliamentary debates, 1680
  2. SC no. 6433: Sir John Doddridge [1555-1628], 'Dissertation on Parliament'
  3. SC no. 6434: Sande's holograph Relations concerning the state of Religion
  4. SC no. 6435: 'Francisci Bacon Cogitata et Visa de interpretatione Naturae...'
  5. SC no. 6438: Depositions concerning the death of the earl of Essex
  6. SC no. 6439: 'Votes of the House of Commons ...', 1685
  7. SC no. 6440: 'Cottington's Case, whether the bishops of England have power to Question a sentence of the Arch-bishop of Turenne?'
  8. SC no. 6444: 'Two Tracts wrote by Dr Patrick at the Request of the Countess of Lindsey, who had lately revolted to the Church of Rome.'
  9. SC no. 6445: 'A Prophecy of Walter Gostlow's.'
  10. SC no. 6446: Dr. John Wallis on Paschal Tables
  11. SC no. 6447: 'Motives for which a Gentleman and his Wife turned Papist about the year 1668.'
  12. SC no. 6448: 'The end of Controversies; or 2. Letters out of French to that Purpose.'
  13. SC no. 6449: 'Mr Rawson's Exceptions to Mr Appleby's Sermon de Sabbato....'
  14. SC no. 6450: Reasons for leaving the Church of Rome
  15. SC no. 6451: Hobbes on Heresy
  16. SC no. 6452: Catalogue of Peers
  17. SC no. 6453: 'An Elegy of Major Samuel Holland upon the Death of John Earl of Rochester.'
  18. SC no. 6455: 'Catalogus Codicum MSS. in Bibliotheca D. Johannis Cantabrigiae, à D. Jennings Librario concinnatus, An. 1649.'
  19. SC no. 6457: Act of Parliament, 27 Hen. viii
  20. SC no. 6471: Theological collections
  21. SC no. 6473: 'Synopsis subjectorum in singulis facultatibus, auctorumque qui de iis scripserunt, Auctore Thoma Jamesio' (See G. W. Wheeler's The Earliest Catalogues of the Bodleian (Oxford, 1928)
  22. SC no. 6474: 'All Souls College, or the state and place of good souls separated from their Bodies...'
  23. SC no. 6476: Hebrew printed book, Cambridge, 1631
  24. SC no. 6485: 'Rosarium Romanum continens preces ad Sanctos, etc.'
  25. SC no. 6490: 'The first Book of Claudian de raptu Proserpinae, Englished by Jo. Cartwright...'


  • Some of the more important printed items are noted in William Dunn Macray's Annals of the Bodleian Library, Oxford, A.D. 1598-A.D. 1867 (London: Rivingtons, 1868), p. 158. For his paper against lending out Bodleian books see Macray, op. cit., pp. 113-18. A considerable number of letters and papers by or relating to him are scattered amongst the Western Manuscripts, chiefly in the Rawlinson and Tanner collections, and some are at the Queen's College.
Barlow Manuscripts
Collection Level Description by Emily Tarrant; EAD version 2020 by Alice Whichelow
EAD version 2020
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Bodleian Libraries Repository

Weston Library
Broad Street
Oxford OX1 3BG United Kingdom