Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts
Date of origin:Late fifteenth century.
Place of origin:Italy
Paper codex with watermarks: 11 different watermarks are found, listed according to quire number. Front flyleaf ii is a bird sitting atop mountains and encircled (Briquet #12250). Quire #1 has two marks: ff. 1 and 16 are an encircled bird (possibly Briquet #12220), and the other mark, which is also present in quires 2, 3, and 4, is an antlered deer (no exact Briquet match). Quires 5 and 6 have a bird (Briquet #12149). Quires 7 and 10 contain a crown set in a circle (Briquet #4862). Quires 8 and 9 and 11-13 contain an encircled bird, possibly the same as appears in quire 1. Quires 14-18 and 21 all contain a simple crown with no circle (Briquet #4775). Quire 16 also contains an example of scissors with a star (Briquet #3723). Quire 19 contains an unidentifiable mark. Quire 20 contains an anchor (Briquet #428). Quire 21 also contains a cow's head (no exact Briquet match) on the last leaf. Quire 22 contains another bird encircled (Briquet #12147). Quire 23 has an encircled star (Briquet #6086). Quire 24, the last, has a tower (no exact Briquet match).
There are two separate sets of arabic numberings in the foliation. The first set of arabic numbers goes up to 179, but there are two problems with regard to the actual count of folia in the manuscript. The first is that the numbering begins on the first page with text; however, this is not the first folium of the quire, which begins the folium before, so technically the first set of folio numbers is one behind the actual count. The second problem is that this foliation does not include two (ff. 180 and 181) of the three blank folia (179r-181v) at the end of quire 18, which should be a part of the actual count. Thus, the first set of Arabic numeration should have had 182 folia, but instead ends at 179. The second set of Arabic foliation begins at quire 14 (Petronius Arbiter), and numbers each page (1r=1, 1v=2, 2r=3, etc.) rather than each folium for the first 21 folia of this set (42=21v is the last verso to be numbered). The 22nd folium (203) is numbered 42, so the final 110 folia in the codex takes it up to 152. My references in this description are to the foliation as it appears in the manuscript, and to distinguish the two sets of numbering, I supply a "II" (folia 183-314) in parentheses following the number (no parenthetical number or a "I" in parentheses refers to folia 1-182 of the MS).
Dimensions:197mm x 143mm (leaves), 153mm x 90mm (ruled space)
Collation:iii 118 2-712 8-920 1010 1112 1210 1320 14-2112 2224 234 2412 (wanting 9-12) i.
Script:Written in a rapid humanist cursive in 11 hands. Hand #1 is responsible for quires 1-4 and 14-20 [ff. 1r-51v, and 1-100v (set II)], or 150 of the 314 folia in the codex. Hand #2 appears briefly, to add a short text on ff. 51v-52r. Hand #3 is responsible for quire 5, ff. 54r-65v. Hand #4 starts quire 6, ff. 66r-75r, and Hand #5 finishes quires 6 and 7, ff. 75v-88r. Hand #6 contributes a larger portion, quires 8-10, ff. 90r-139v. Hand #7 is responsible for quire 11, ff. 140r-150v, and Hand #8 finishes the "first book" of the codex (number set #1) in quires 12 and 13, ff. 152r-178v. Hand #1 reappears at the beginning of "book two" and is responsible for the first 100 folia in numbering set #2. Hand #9 contributes two quires, 20 and 21 on ff. 101 (II)-113r(II). The imported quire #22 (a full 24 folia from 117r-140v(II)) is Hand #10, and the illegible scrawl of Hand #11 finishes the codex (quires 23-24, ff. 141r-152r(II)).
Binding:Modern half-calf binding over boards decorated with pastepaper with binder's gilt spine and title: "SCRIPTOR./ VETER./ VAR./ CODEX/ SAEC. XV".
Additions:Flyleaf ii r-v contains an attempt at a Table of Contents for "book one" of the codex (ff. 1r-152r, to Ambrose's tract "On the Good of Death"). The hand may be 18th or 19th century, but whatever its date, it is responsible for the first foliation (sets I and II) of the codex. Occasional marginal annotations are present, but most of the time they are not really additions but rather aids provided by the scribes for organizing the sections of a given text or elucidating names of figures discussed therein. Some marginal hands with pointing fingers appear on ff. 44r-51r (the Excerpts from the Vita Apollonii).
On a piece of modern paper pasted to the flyleaf, type-written note says, "Found in Villa Otemes, Cervignano, Italy, December 1918, after the Second Battle of the Plava. Count Otemes was formally Governor of Istria (Dalmation Coast.) Cervignano is located ten miles from Trieste on main road. Villa Otemes was used as General Headquarters of the Austrian Army during their occupation period. Later when driven out by Italians and Americans in 1918, the Villa was used as a headquarters for the Medical Unit of the University of Chicago. The books were taken from the homes of Italians and public libraries and stored in this villa for safe keeping. However, the Austrians were driven back so fast it was impossible to take anything with them. These books were picked up by Henry Stoy Rigden on December 22nd, 1918."
Bibliography:Colker, Marvin L. "Two Manuscripts of Suetonius' De grammaticis et rhetoribus." Manuscripta 27 (1983): 165-169.