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St Paul, Epistles with gloss

Maker(s) &

, production, Italy, Lombardy, Morimondo, Cistercian Abbey of Morimondo, .


Frank McClean


illuminated manuscript


other; type of text


circa 1150


mid 12th century


PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, i modern paper flyleaf + 236 fols. + i modern paper flyleaf, 272 x 176-180 mm (172 x 55 mm, extending to 150 mm on pages with glosses in both margins), one column, 44 lines (written on every third ruled line to accommodate interlinear glosses), ruled in plummet with ruling for glosses in inner and outer margins as required, running headers, catchwords

BINDING: Eighteenth century, blind-tooled brown leather over wooden boards

CONTENTS: fols. 1r-236r St Paul, Epistles with interlinear and marginal glosses

DECORATION: Historiated initial [P, 12 ll.] in liquid gold with inset sections of red and blue foliate motifs on unpainted grounds, on a ground of solid blue, with bowl of letter housing half-length portrait of St Paul, nimbed, holding a scroll, stave of letter extending the height of the written space (fol. 1r).

ORNAMENTATION: Twelve initials in yellow with inset sections of red and blue foliate motifs on grounds of solid blue and green, often extending the height of the written space, with white vine-scroll touched with red in the bowl of the letter, for major text divisions: fols. 45v, 88v, 117v (with bird on whine scroll), 132r, 146v, 157r, 166v, 175v (bird finials to letter stem), 180r (bird finials to letter stem), 191r, 198v, 203r; yellow and red initial [M] on ground of solid blue and unpainted foliate interlace with pale washes of red or yellow (fol. 205r); red initials [1-2 ll.], some using foliate forms and occasional minor red pen flourishing, for minor text divisions; brown ink one-line initials with red paraph marks for lesser text divisions; the text following major initials is written in red and blue display capitals (fols. 1r, 205r) or in brown display capitals highlighted with yellow; gloss sections are marked by brown ink paraph marks, decorated with increasingly elaborate geometric motifs.


illumination; whole


parchment; support
gold; medium




bequeathed; 1904; McClean, Frank


Written and illuminated at the Cistercian Abbey of Morimondo (no. 37 in the twelfth-century library inventory; Leclercq 1961, 179); still in Morimondo in the fifteenth-century when an ownership inscription was added on fol. 236v: Liber sancte Marie de morimondo ordinis cisterc. Mediolanensis dioces. No Lvii Lvi (erased and replaced with XXXVI in darker ink; Ferrari 1980, 264; similar ex-libris in Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Canon. Pat. Lat. 214; P├Ącht and Alexander 1970, no. 50); possibly part of the collection of Francesco Giovio (1796-1873) (Ferrari 1993, 286 and 299); U. Hoepli, Milan, catalogue no. 83 (1883), no. 46 (cutting from catalogue pasted inside upper cover); bought from him by Frank McClean (1837-1904) in 1892 (James 1912a, 52); his bequest, 1904.


McClean, Frank; previous owner
Hoepli, U.; previous owner
Giovio, Francesco; previous owner
Cistercian Abbey of Morimondo; original owner


secundo folio; seruio in spiritu meo



James, Montague Rhodes, Dr. 1912. A descriptive catalogue of the McClean Collection of Manuscripts in the Fitzwilliam Museum.Cambridge (Cambs.): Cambridge University Press
pp. 52-53, pl. xx

Wormald, Francis. Giles, Phyllis M.. 1966. Illuminated Manuscripts in the Fitzwilliam Museum: An Exhibition to Commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Death of the Founder, Richard, 7th Viscount Fitzwilliam of Merrion.Cambridge (Cambs.):
cat. no. 18

Glorieux-De Gand, T.. 1990. Manuscrits Cisterciens de la Bibliotheque royale de Belgique (ex. cat.). Bibliotheque Royale Albert
cat. no. 55

Morgan, Nigel. Panayotova, Stella. Reynolds, Suzanne. 2011. A Catalogue of Western Book Illumination in the Fitzwilliam Museum and the Cambridge Colleges. Part Two. Vols. 1-2: Italy and the Iberian Peninsula.London: Harvey Miller Publishers
Cat. no. 9 cited cat. no. 10

Ferrari, M.. 1980. Biblioteche e Scrittoi Benedettini nella storia culturale della diocesi Ambrosiana: Appunti ed Episodi.
Source Title: Ricerche storiche sulla chiesa Ambrosiana nel XV centenario della nascita di San Benedetto (480-1980) 9 (1980) : 230-290

p. 264, no. 16

Ferrari, M.. Zerbi, P.. 1993. Dopo Bernardo: biblioteche e "scriptoria" cistercensi dell'Italia settentrionale nel XII secolo.Milan:
Source Title: San Bernado e l'Italia, Atti del Convegno di Studi(1990) : 253-306

pp. 267, 290, 299

Talbot, C. H.. 1952. Cistertian Manuscripts in England.
Source Title: Collectanea Ordinis Cisterciensis Reformatorum 14 208-212 (1952) : 264-277
p. 271

Bandera, S.. 1998. Gli inizi dello scriptorium di Morimondo.Morimondo:
Source Title: Un abbazia lombarda: Morimondo, la sua storia e il suo messaggio. Convegno celebrativo nel VII centenario del termine dei lavori della chiesa abbaziale 1296-1996() : 113-199

p. 1201-21, fig. 3

Garrison, E.B.. 1957. A Twelfth-Century Bible. A Jerusalem (?) Masterpiece.
Source Title: Studies in the History of Medieval Italian Painting() : 301-309

p. 56, fig. 57


Object Number: MS McClean 29
(Manuscripts and Printed Books)
(record id: 177344; input: 2010-07-16; modified: 2017-04-27)


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