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Durham University

Special Collections

DUL MS Cosin V.iii.19 R. Higden, Polychronicon extr.; etc. s. xv in.

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.

17/1/90 AJP revision of AJP; checked AID and revised AJP 8/94

[1] + 20 + [22, paper] + [1]. Membrane (0.12 mm.; natural edge (f. 9) and sewn-up flaw (f. 4); quires with fleshside outermost), 188 x 136 mm., top and outer edges cropped (see ff. 1, 11).

Collation: 1-210. Catchword on quire 1.

No pricking or line-ruling visible. Written space 150 x 100 mm.; framed in ink. 41 long lines.

Written in small short-r anglicana, expertly, by one hand, or, item 4, in anglicana of more documentary aspect, with open g.

Decoration: paraphs in red. Marginal notes underlined in red. Initials, to item 1 and f. 1v, both I, red.


1. ff. 1-19 ¶Extractus Cronicarum Cestrencis ¶Cronice veteris testamenti. liber 2us Ieronimus ad eugenium in epa .43a. dicit quod decime leguntur primum date ab abraham ... esau vendidit Iacob fratri suo. Hoc in Cronica Cestrencis. lio. 2o. cao. 10. d. ... ... (f. 19) ibi cao. 44.c ¶Item anno gratie 1342 obijt benedictus papa ... ibi d. ¶Item anno gratie 1352 ... 1360 ... ibi cao. 47. d. ¶Item anno gratie 1347. capta est calesia ¶Item anno gratie 1348. Inualuit magna pestilencia in anglia ¶Item anno gratie 1362. ... ¶Item anno gratie 1370. vrbanus papa ... anno 2o. incepit scisma ¶Post vrbanum 6m. successit Bonefacius 9us. anno gratie 1388. ¶Post quem Innocencius 7us. ¶Post quem gregorius. 12us.

Ranulph Higden, Polychronicon cum continuatione, extracts. The extracts principally concern basic Christian and papal chronology, the history of religious orders, and of writers and their works; references to Winchester are well represented. They follow MS A most closely, a copy of the 'intermediate version', see John Taylor, The universal chronicle of Ranulf Higden, (Oxford; 1966), cap. 6, represented by MSS A and B in Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden monachi Cestrensis, ed. C. Babington and J. R. Lumby, [Rolls Series 41], (London; 1865-1886). The first extract is ibid., ii,288-290, and the last ibid. viii,338, followed by six extracts from Continuation B or C, ibid. viii,407-420, cf. Taylor pp. 113-116; after the third of these, for 1360, which is the last entry to have a chapter-reference, two brief unidentified entries for 1347 and 1348 are interpolated (see above), and after the sixth, three brief entries end with Gregory XII, elected Pope in 1406 (see above).

Many of the entries have references to chapters with lettered subdivisions; the chapter-divisions are the same as in the Rolls Series edition, but the latter part of Bk III, from a point somewhere between caps xxiv and xxxiii, is treated as part of Bk II, with the chapter-numbers unchanged, and is followed by an extract from Bk III,xviii numbered 3.1 (f. 1v). Higden's final chapter is here numbered [7].44, and the first extract from the Continuation (viii,407) is treated as part of it; the second and third extracts (viii,409 and 410) are here numbered 46.b and 47.d.

2. f. 19 lower margin (a) ¶Mors communis in M. ter CCC. quorum l. minus vno; (b) ¶C. ter erant Mille decies sex vnus et ille luce tua Maure vehemens fuit impetus aure.

Notes of (a) the Black Death in 1349, (b) a great wind on St Maur's day [15 January] 1361/2.

f. 19v blank.

3. f. 20 Anno gratie 1381. apud Turrim london fuerunt interfecti Magister Symon Sutbury Archiepiscopus tunc Cantuar tunc Cancellarius anglie. et Frater Robertus halis prior sancti Iohannis Ierusalem in anglia tunc thesaurus anglie. In festo sancti Basilij episcopi et confessoris. littera dominicali tunc F. Item Anno gratie 1382. fuit terremotus viz 12 kaln Iunij scilicet 3o die post festum sancti Dunstani.

Annales 1381 & 1382.

4. (added, s. xv1) f. 20v (a) Summa xme prouinciarum Cantuar ¶ Ebor. xviij Ml. viij C. lxxvj li Summa xvme tocius Anglie ...; (b) ... ecclesie parochiales ... ville ... Feode militum ... De quibus religiosi habent ...; (c) Memorandum quod beneficia Alienigenarum capta fuerunt ... restituta ... resumpta ... xjo die Iunii Ao xliijo.

Brief notes on (a) clerical taxation, (b) churches, vills and fees, and (c) King Edward III's actions over alien benefices.

Correction and Annotation:

Marginal notes in the main hand indicate the content of each extract in item 1, and 'Translatio benedicti a deodatus papa.' is marked with two pairs of red strokes (f. 9v); 'hoc tempore martirizatur sanctus kenelmus' is added at the foot of f. 10v.

Written in England, possibly with some connection with Winchester (see item 1).

Secundo folio: passus est.

Cosin's Library ex libris, by Thomas Rud, DATE, f. 1.

Binding: plain brown morocco, s. xix med., by Tucket of London