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Durham University

Special Collections

DUL MS Cosin V.iii.18 Franciscan tracts on poverty s. xiv1 (not before 1323)

These incomplete draft descriptions of medieval manuscripts in Durham University Library are copyright, and may not be quoted without the permission of the University of Durham Library.

Owing to inconsistencies with the source software, accented characters appear in varying compound forms. This has not yet been rationalized.

16/1/90 AJP revision of AJP; checked AID and revised AJP 8/94

This manuscript is discussed, and its contents edited, in D. L. Douie, "Three treatises on evangelical poverty by Fr. Richard Conyngton, Fr. Walter Chatton and an anonymous from MS V III 18 in Bishop Cosin's library, Durham", Archivum Franciscanum Historicum 24, (1931), 341-369; 25, (1932), 36-58, 210-240, indicating that these tracts were composed shortly after Pope John XXII's bull Ad conditorem, issued 8 December 1322. It is unlikely that copies of them would have been made after any great lapse of time.

2 (paper) + 4 (paper, the first the previous cover with Dutch marbled overlay, s. xvii) + 22 + 4 (paper, second and third only broad stubs, the last the previous cover as at front, s. xvii) + 2 (paper); foliated i-vi, 1-28. Membrane (0.12 mm.; quires with fleshside outermost, some natural flaws (stitching gone, f. 14) and edges), 197 x 136 mm, top edge cropped (see note, s. xvii, f. 5 top).

Collation (all folds now lined with linen): 112, 212 wants 11-12 (blank ?) with 6/7 (ff. 18-19) apparently two singletons; writing before the manuscript was rebound Douie reported (p. 343) the loss of folio 19, i.e. a leaf after the end of item 2 (26) on f. 18v, but there is now no obvious evidence to confirm this.

No pricking visible; line-ruling on some pages. Written space 171-176 x 100-106 mm.; ruled in brown. 37-42 long lines.

Written in small anglicana of documentary type, by one hand, perhaps identifiable, see below.

Decoration not executed; unfilled 2-line space for initial to item 1.


1. ff. 1-4v Ihesus Maria Johannes Conyngton [across top] Flecto genua mea ad dominum patrem pontificum summum ... Cum enim essem Iunior ... ... mee conscientie assecurationem et serenacionem amen. Expliciunt Responsiones fratris Ricardi de Conyngton ad rationes papales que ponuntur in illo statuto. ad conditorem Canonum.

Richard of Conington OFM, Responsiones ad rationes papales. ed. Douie, pp. 355-369, based on this copy, collated with the imperfect copy in Brussels Biblioth`eque Royale MS 1613. Original side-notes include several references to 'Triuet'.

2. ff. 5-18v Tractatus de paupertate euuangelica editus a fratre Walterus de Chatton Oxon. Simul in unum diues et pauper. In Psalmis vt aliter apparat qualiter cum diuino dominio christi respectu rerum temporalium ... ... cum mihi constiterit ipsa aliqualiter auero deuiare. Explicit tractatus de paupertate ewangelica editus a fratre Waltero de Chatton Oxon.

Walter of Chatton OFM, De paupertate evangelica. ed. Douie, pp. 36-58, 210-240, based on this copy, and compared with one copy of a substantially divergent version, Florence Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana MS S. Crucis Plut 31 Sin Cod. 3 ff. 183v-190, and two copies of Chatton's treatment of the same subject in his Super sententias, Laurenziana MS conv. sopp. C 5,357, and Paris Bibliothèque nationale MSS lat. 15886-15887. 16 lines of text cancelled , 'vacat', by the main scribe, f. 13. Further references to 'Triuet' in the original side-notes, e.g. f. 16v.

3. ff. 19-22v Maria iesus. Iohannes. Beda super Marcum Super istam auctoritatem vos qui reliquisti omnia etc. et ponitur in glosa Mr 10 ... ... nec hereticum asserere christum et apostolos nihil habuisse primo modo accipiendi habere.

De paupertate et heresia, extract (?). "anonymous treatise presumably of Franciscan origin ... much mutilated and lacks both a beginning and an end" (Douie p. 343); although without proper opening and ending, there is probably no physical loss of text since the invocation at the head of f. 19 suggests that this was regarded as the beginning, while the writing finishes at least a line and a half short of the end of f. 22v. The background appears to be English, see the reference 'hanc diffinicionem tradidit dominus episcopus Linc. grossetes ceteris episcopis in quadam congregatione facta London', f. 20v.

The faint note at the foot of f. 22v ("indecipherable" Douie p. 343) appears under infra-red light to refer to Augustine and possibly Gregory.

Written by an English hand, perhaps that of the author of item 1, or one of his close associates, see the invocation f. 1 top.

Secundo folio: alicui rei.

'Geo. Davenport. 1670.', f. iiiv; his note of contents,

f. viv.

Binding: former cover of marbled paper now ff. iii and 26; replaced c.1930 by Bramhall & Menzies of Manchester with plain brown morocco.