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Langbaine Manuscripts


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Langbaine's manuscripts, including material relating to Greek manuscripts, the Bodleian Library and Oxford colleges.


  • Creation: 17th century


2.31 Linear metres (21 boxes)

Language of Materials

  • Latin
  • Greek, Modern (1453-)

Preferred Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Libraries [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MSS. Langb. 1, fols. 1-2].

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

Full range of shelfmarks:

MSS. Langb. 1-21

Collection ID (for staff)

CMD ID 13064


Langbaine's manuscripts, including material relating to Greek manuscripts, the Bodleian Library and Oxford colleges.

Biographical / Historical

Gerard Langbaine the elder was born in 1609 in Westmorland, and in 1625 came to the Queen's College, Oxford, where he was successively bateller, servitor, tabarder, fellow (1633), and provost (1646). In 1644 he was elected Keeper of the Archives. Although a staunch Royalist he managed to retain his provostship until his death on 10 February 1658, which was caused by 'an extreme cold taken sitting in the University Library'. He must be distinguished from his younger son of the same name, the dramatic biographer and critic who lived from 1656 to 1692.

Langbaine wrote many valuable catalogues, lists, and volumes of excerpts relating to Bodleian manuscripts, chiefly in 1654-5, and much of his work was printed in the Old Catalogue of 1697. Further details are given in the Dictionary of National Biography.


The letter or symbols within brackets, here placed in custodian history, are those by which Langbaine himself distinguished the volumes.

Other Finding Aids

For a full description in Latin see, Catalogi codicum manuscriptorum Bibliothecae Bodleianae pars prima recensionem codicum Graecorum continens (Oxford, 1853, reprinted with corrections by H. O. Coxe, Oxford, 1969), Langbaine.

Other Finding Aids

Brief one-line descriptions, with shelfmarks and short titles, are in 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. 5232a-5232u.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection was bought for £11 and arrived in 1658.

Related Materials

See also Wood Manuscripts (Shelfmarks: MSS. Add. C. 173; Ashm. Mus. c. 1; Wood B. 1-15, C. 1-12, C. 52-53, D. 1-5, D. 7-20, D. 32-33, E. 1-12, E. 14, E. 29, E. 32-33, F. 1-21, F. 23-37, F. 39-51; Wood donat. 1-9; Wood empt. 1-25; Wood Rolls 1).

Langbaine 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