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Detailed record for Harley 1808

Part 1 ff. 9v-17v 
Title Chronicle of England, entitled 'Cronica facta sub compendio', ending with the coronation of Henri IV on 13 October 1399 (ff. 10-17v), preceded by a map of Britain or 'Totius Britanniae Tabula Chorographica'
Origin England
Date 1st quarter of the 15th century
Language Latin
Script Gothic cursive (Anglicana)
Decoration Full page map of Britain in colours (f. 9v). Initials in blue with penwork decoration in red. Rubrics in red.
Dimensions in mm 240 x 175 (185 x 125), in two columns
 
Part 2 ff. 24-29v 
Title Miscellaneous text relating to universal history, the history of Britain, theology, and the 1402 comet
Origin England
Date 1st quarter of the 15th century
Language Latin
Script Gothic cursive (Anglicana)
Decoration Monogram 'JHS' in colours (f. 29v). Initials in blue with penwork decoration in red. Rubrics and marginal notabilia in red. Paraphs in blue. Initials highlighted in red.
Dimensions in mm 240 x 170 (185 x 125), in two columns
 
Part 3 ff. 30v-58v 
Author Geoffrey of Monmouth
Title Historical miscellany, including abridged versions of Monmouth's 'Historia Regum Britanniae' in verse (404 verses) and in prose (ff. 46-48v), followed by a poem relating to the building of York (ff. 48v-55v), and copies of papal bulls and regal documents (ff. 55v-58v)
Origin England, N. (York ?)
Date 1st half of the 15th century
Language Latin
Script Gothic hybrid
Decoration Full page miniatures in colours of the arrival of Brutus to England, the slaying of giants, and the building of a city, possibly London (f. 30v), and of the fortified town of York (f. 45v). Initials in blue with penwork decoration in red, one with foliate decoration in green (f. 46). Initial in green with foliate design and penwork decoration in red (f. 42v). Rubrics in red. Initials and paraphs in red and blue. Prose text added to the versification of Geoffrey's 'Historia' in red. Initials highlighted in red.
Dimensions in mm 235 x 175 (175/185 x 90)
 
Official foliation ff. 105 (+ 2 unfoliated modern paper and 2 original parchment flyleaves at the beginning and 3 modern paper at the end).
Form Parchment codex
Binding BM/BL in-house. 19th century; marbled endleaves.
Provenance ? A member of the Fitz Adam family, possibly of Staveley, Chesterfield, Derbyshire: its arms (barry of eight gules and argent, a fleur-de-lys sable) and genealogy (f. 18v).
The Harley Collection, formed by Robert Harley (b. 1661, d. 1724), 1st earl of Oxford and Mortimer, politician, and Edward Harley (b. 1689, d. 1741), 2nd earl of Oxford and Mortimer, book collector and patron of the arts.
Edward Harley bequeathed the library to his widow, Henrietta Cavendish, née Holles (b. 1694, d. 1755) during her lifetime and thereafter to their daughter, Margaret Cavendish Bentinck (b. 1715, d. 1785), duchess of Portland; the manuscripts were sold by the Countess and the Duchess in 1753 to the nation for £10,000 (a fraction of their contemporary value) under the Act of Parliament that also established the British Museum; the Harley manuscripts form one of the foundation collections of the British Library.
Notes The volume is a composite miscellany of historical texts and documents of different provenance, mostly with no significant decoration; it is imperfect at the end. For a detailed table of contents, see A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts 1808.
The abridged version of Monmouth's 'Historia Regum Britanniae' in verse is also found in Cotton Claudius D VII, ff. 16-22, and Harley 3860, ff. 3-11v (see Rigg 2000).
Select bibliography A Catalogue of the Harleian Manuscripts in the British Museum, 4 vols (London: Eyre and Strahan, 1808-12), II (1808), no. 1808.

Walter de Gray Birch and Henry Jenner, Early Drawings and Illuminations: An Introduction to the Study of Illustrated Manuscripts (London: Bagster and Sons, 1879), p. 16.

Jacob Hammer, 'Une version métrique de l'Historia Regum Britanniae de Geoffrey de Monmouth', Latomus: Revue d'études latines, 2 (1938), 131-51 (p. 132).

'Keith D. Lilley and Christopher D. Lloyd, with Bruce M. S. Campbell, 'Mapping the Realm: A New Look at the Gough Map of Britain (c.1360)', Imago Mundi: The International Journal for the History of Cartography, 61 (2009), 1-28 (p. 20 n. 3).

A Book of British Kings 1200 BC - 1399 AD: Edited from British Library MSS. Harley 3860, Cotton Claudius D. VII, and Harley 1808, by Arthur G. Rigg, Toronto Medieval Latin Texts, 26 (Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies, 2000), pp. 8, 19-20.


Images

Part  1   ff. 9v-17v
Chronicle of England, entitled 'Cronica facta sub compendio', ending with the coronation of Henri IV on 13 October 1399 (ff. 10-17v), preceded by a map of Britain or 'Totius Britanniae Tabula Chorographica'
* * *
 
Map of Britain

f. 9v
Map of Britain
Map of England and Scotland

f. 9v
Map of England and Scotland

Part  3   ff. 30v-58v
Geoffrey of Monmouth Historical miscellany, including abridged versions of Monmouth's 'Historia Regum Britanniae' in verse (404 verses) and in prose (ff. 46-48v), followed by a poem relating to the building of York (ff. 48v-55v), and copies of papal bulls and regal documents (ff. 55v-58v)
* * *
 
Brutus

f. 30v
Brutus
York

f. 45v
York
Text page

f. 96
Text page
 

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