A visual record of unidentified coats of arms in Bodleian incunables

From Marie-Eugénie Lecouffe (Enssib / CSB intern)

The importance for a library such as the Bodleian Library of making provenance information more available for its users, with the aim of helping provenance research, was already mentioned on this blog in a previous post. Indeed supplying images of provenance evidence was described as the easiest way to allow comparison between several unidentified monograms or coats of arms, for example. Displaying the pictures on Flickr was also presented as one simple possibility for sharing them, organizing them in sets and receiving corrections and comments from any person interested in provenance research.

A family or institutional coat of arms is a very good example of provenance evidence that might be helpfully identified by a picture.  The Provenance Index of the Bodleian Incunable Catalogue registers more than 80 unidentified coats of arms.  For each of them an extended blazoning is provided in the text of the catalogue. But heraldic language is so specific that it could be difficult for non-specialists to imagine what these really look like. Supplying  photos allows visual connections… and perhaps identification!

Now almost all of the unidentified coats of arms registered in the Bodleian Incunable Catalogue (Bod-Inc) have been imaged. A few examples of these pictures are shown in the slideshow below.

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But you’ll find much more on Flickr. Indeed all (or almost all) the pictures of those unidentified coats of arms have been put with their descriptions in the set called “Unidentified coats of arms in Bodleian incunables“. A caption for each picture includes:

  • the location of the coat of arms in the incunable;
  • its blazoning (verbal description), as it is provided in Bodleian Incunable Catalogue;
  • a short notice of the incunable: shelfmark, author, title, publisher details and publication date;
  • the link to the online PDF version of the incunable catalogue with the Bod-Inc number.

Tags have been added as well:

  • Bodleian shelfmark;
  • Bod-Inc number;
  • keywords (“coat of arms”, unidentified and incunables).

There are other types of unidentified provenance evidence noted in the Bodleian Incunable Catalogue which might usefully be imaged and put on Flickr for the same purpose: bookplates, monograms…

Identifications, if any are forthcoming, can be made in comments to this blogpost.

Monastic provenances of early printed books in Bodleian collections: case 5

Aristoteles’ Opera from the Premonstratensians of Weissenau


Fol. A1r
Fol. 3A1r



Aristoteles, Opera
Venice: A. Torresanus and B. de Blavis (in part for Johannes de Colonia), 1483.
Folio (ISTC ia00962000; Bod-inc A-387(1)).
Bodleian Library Auct. P inf. 1.3






Weissenau, Württemberg, dioc. of Konstanz, Premonstratensians, SS.Petrus et Paulus

Founded in 1145, dissolved in 1802. On a1r «Coenobii Minoraugiensis»; on 3A1r «Bibliothecae Weissenaviensis».

Fol. 3A1r: inscription

Samuel Butler (1774-1839), Bishop of Lichfield

Bodleian Library

Purchased in 1840 at the Butler sale for £18. 0. 0; not found in Books purchased for the Bodleian (1840).


South-German decoration. On 3A1r a circular portion which presumably bore a coat of arms has been cut out and replaced by blank paper. A different artist has supplied a new coat of arms, unidentified.


Contemporary blind-tooled pigskin over wooden boards, made in/for Weissenau.

Medieval manuscripts surviving from the Premonstratensians of Weissenau are today in:

Amiens, Berlin, Bloomington Indiana, Brussels, Cambridge, Cambridge MA, Cologny, Freiburg i. Br., Karlsruhe, Kremsmünster, St Petersburg, Liebenau, London BL, Manchester, Munich SBS, Nantes, New Haven, Nuremberg, Paris BnF, Prague (the largest number), Princeton, St Gallen, St Paul im Lavanttal, Sigmaringen, Stuttgart, Washington DC, Williamstown MA, Wolfenbüttel, Zeil.

Bibliography: Handschriftenerbe des deutschen Mittelalters, ed. S. Krämer, 2 vols, Munich 1989, p. II 818.

Other incunables surviving from the Premonstratensians of Weissenau are today in:

Oxford, Bodleian Library (22); Cambridge UL (1); Copenhagen (1); Frankfurt/M (1); Freiburg UB (6); Hannover (2); Harvard (1); Leipzig (1); London, BL (1); New York, P. Morgan Lib. (1); Paris, BnF; Diocese Rottenburg-Stuttgart (20); Sigmaringen Hofbibliothek (1); Stockholm (1); Stuttgart, Württembergische Landesbibliothek (106); Tübingen UB (9); Ulm (1); Weimar, Herzogin Anna Amalia Bibl. (1) and further research may trace more in…?


[Source: Paul Needham’s IPI, Bod-inc., BSB-Ink, INKA]

Monastic provenances of early printed books in Bodleian collections: case 4

An Augustinus from the Augustinian Canons regular of the Lateran congregation of Padua 

Augustinus, De civitate Dei
Venice: Johannes and Vindelinus de Spira, 1470.
Folio (ISTC ia01233000; Bod-inc A-520).
Bodleian Library: Broxb. 18.10


  • Petrus de Montagnana (d. 1478), grammarian and bibliophile
  • Padua, Augustinian Canons Regular of the Lateran Congregation, S. Johannes Baptista in Viridario, 1478

A gift from Petrus de Montagnana as stated in the inscription on E9r: «Librum hunc Canonicis Regularibus Lateranensibus in monasterio diui Ioannis Baptiste de uiridaria Padue agentibus uir uenerabilis ac deuotus Christi sacerdos & bonarum artium cultor Grece Latine Hebraice eque peritissimus D. Petrus Montagnana optima fide pietatis studio proque salute adscripsit atque donauit quem quisque legens proficiat primum deinde sit gratus | M.CCCCLXXVIII». The collection was moved in the late 18th century to the Marciana Library of Venice.

Fol. 9r: inscription
  • Sir John Hayford Thorold (1773-1831)
  • Quaritch, London antiquarian booksellers, 1897

The book features in Monumenta typographica (1897), no. 233 for £28. 0. 0.

  • Charles Stephen Ascherson (d. 1945)

Bookplate dated 1902.

  • Quaritch, London antiquarian booksellers, c. 1954
  • Albert Ehrman (1890-1969)

Purchased from Quaritch in 1954 for £210

  • Oxford, Bodleian Library

Presented by John Ehrman in 1978.

Bibliography: P. Sambin, ‘La formazione quattrocentesca della Biblioteca di S. Giovanni di Verdara in Padova’, Atti dell’Istituto Veneto di Scienze Lettere ed Arti, Classe di Scienze Morali, Lettere ed Arti, 114 (1956), 263-80; R. W. Hunt, ‘Pietro da Montagnana: a Donor of Books to san Giovanni di Verdara in Padua’, The Bodleian Library Record, 9 (1973), pp. 17-22.

History of the Collection:

The monastery housed not only a valuable library which contained the collections of scholars such Pietro da Montagnana, Giovanni Marcanova, and Marco Mantova Benavides, but also portraits, sculptures, coins, archeological and natural history specimens. When in 1783 the Senate of Venice decreed the closure of the institution, it also arranged for the tranfer of the collection in approriate locations: manuscripts and early printed books were assigned to the Marciana Library, the rest of the book collection to the public library of Padua.

Other books surviving from the Augustinian canons regular of Padua are today in:

Paul Needham’s IPI refers that Thomas Coke (1697-1759) 1st Earl of Leicester, on Grand Tour bought 40 manuscripts from S. Johannes in Viridario in 1717.

Other incunabula are today in Venice, Oxford, Bodleian Library (2); Harvard Houghton Lib., New York, P. Morgan Library, in private collections, and further research may trace more in…?

[Source: Paul Needham’s IPI, Bod-inc.]

Monastic provenances of early printed books in Bodleian collections: case 3

An incunable from the Benedictines of Fiecht (Tyrol)

Fol. a1r

Hugo de Sancto Victore, Didascalicon
[Strasbourg: Printer of Henricus Ariminensis (Georg Reyser?), not after 1474]
(ISTC ih00532000; Bod-inc H-242(1)).
Bodleian Library: Auct. 6Q 5.7


Caspar Augsburger, Abbot of St Georgenberg (1469-91)

Fol. a1r: Within the South-German decorated border the arms of Caspar Augsburger and of the monastery: argent, cross of St George, gules, with escutcheon en surtont, argent, a watering can, gules.

Fol. a1r: Arms of Caspar Augsburger

St Georgenberg, Tyrol, Benedictines

Founded in 1138 and moved to Fiecht in 1708
Fol. a1r: Later inscription: «In usum Fratrum Montis S: Georgii |1652»

Fol. a1r: Later inscription

Fiecht, Tyrol, Benedictines

St Gergenberg, then S. Josephus, suppressed by the Bavarian government in 1807.

Bodleian Library

Purchased in 1851 for £1. 1. 0, as published in List of Books Purchased for the Bodleian for 1851, p.64.


Contemporary German blind-tooled leather over wooden boards, with a title-label on the upper cover.

Bibliography: 805 Jahre Benediktinerabtei Sankt Georgenberg, Fiecht: 1138-1988, Studien und Mitteilungen zur Geschichte des Benediktiner-Ordens und seiner Zweige, Ergänzungsband 31 (St Ottilien, 1988).

Other books surviving from the Benedictines of Fiecht are today in:

Oxford, Bodleian Library (12); Augsburg, Uppsala, Stockholm, Dublin Trinity College, Cambridge UL, Cambridge Fitzwilliam Museum Lib., London Library, Paris BnF, New York, P. Morgan Library, Harvard Univ Houghton Lib., in private collections, and further research may trace more in…?

[Source: Paul Needham’s IPI, Bod.-inc.]

Case studies: evidence and provenance histories of monastic books now in the Bodleian Library

In anticipation of the conference “How the secularisation of religious houses transformed the libraries of Europe, 16th-19th centuries”  (22-24th March 2012, Oxford), some monastic books now in Bodleian collections are shown here.

Clicking on each picture below will lead to more extended articles about the Bodleian’s incunable, its monastic provenance and further indication of where else in the world incunabula with the same provenance can be found today.

Benedictines of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice
Benedictines of Tegernsee
Benedictines of Fiecht
Augustinian Canons regular of the Lateran congregation of Padua
Premonstratensians of Weissenau

The slideshow below gathers all the pictures shown in this series of five articles:

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Monastic provenances of early printed books in Bodleian collections: case 2

An incunable from the Benedictines of Tegernsee

Fol. b2r: page border
Fol. b2r: page border

Gualtherus Burlaeus, De vita et moribus philosophorum [short edition]
[Nuremberg: Anton Koberger, not after 1473].
Folio (ISTC ib01319000; Bod-inc B-610(1))
Bodleian Library: Auct. 2Q 3.46(1)


Andreas Hindermair (fl. 1479-93) chaplain of Passau

Inscription on front pastedown: “Istum librum comparauit dominus Andreas Hindermair capellanus capelle omnium sanctorum Patavie pro i aur[o] hung[arico] anno incarnationis 79. Et obtulit deo et santo Quirino Regi et martiri patrono nostro in Tegernsee pro salute anime sue et usu fratrum ibid. Anno domini etc. 1493. Deus sit sibi semper propicius hic et in eternum. Amen”.

Purchasing note on front pastedown

Tegernsee, Bavaria, Benedictines, S. Quirinus

Received in 1493 from A. Hidermair; inscription on rear pastedown: “Attinet monasterio Tegernsee liber iste 1493 obtulit nobis Andreas Hindermayr capellanus in Patauia in altari omnium sanctorum”; printed shelfmark on front cover: “M 53. 2o”..  The institution was dissolved in 1803.

Ownership note on rear pastedown

Munich, Royal Library,

Duplicate: original shelfmark on the spine and inside front pastedown: “Inc. s.a. 255”.

Bodleian Library

Purchased from Munich via Thomas Rodd for Fl. 18, that is £1. 10. 0, as published in List of Books Purchased for the Bodleian for 1837, p. 7.


Contemporary German binding from the Nuremberg workshop of Johann Sulzcpach (Kyriss no. 66): blind-tooled calf over wooden boards; with contemporary manuscript label with title, and a printed shelfmark label (Tegernsee) on the upper cover; yellow-edges; 325 x 220 x 50 mm.

History of the Collection:

Founded in the 8th century, it housed a scriptorium and large library. When the monastery was dissolved in 1803, 1,478 manuscripts and 2,317 incunabula were transferred to Munich. The monastery had an in-house bindery and the ownership inscriptions often included purchasing details, the only reliable source for the development of Tegernee’s collection: about 75% of the books now in Munich contain year of purchase and means of acquisition. By 1500 about 500 incunabula were acquired, a fifth donated, the rest by purchase. A catalogue of incunabula, from the end of the 18th century, is now in Munich, BSB, Cbm Cat. 768.

Bibliography: Bettina Wagner, Venetian incunabula in Bavaria. Early evidence for monastic book purchases, in The Books of Venice / Il libro veneziano, ed. Lisa Pon and Craig Kallendorf, Miscellanea Marciana, 20 (2008 for 2005-2007), pp. 153-177.

Medieval manuscripts surviving from the Benedictines of Tegernsee are today in:

Augsburg UB, Austin Texas, Berlin, Pressburg, Wrocław, Cambridge, Cologny, Darmstadt, Evreux. Freising, London BL, Mainz, Melk, Munich BSB (the largest number), Munich UB, New Haven, Nuremberg, Oxford Bodley (3), Paris BnF, Prague, Stuttgart, Vatican Library, Vienna.

BibliographyHandschriftenerbe des deutschen Mittelalters, ed. S. Krämer, 2 vols, Munich 1989, p. II 753.

Other incunables surviving from the Benedictines of Tegernsee are today in:

Munich, Staatsbibliothek

Over 1,034 incunabula, the largest collection from an individual monastery to survive in BSB. As a result of 19th-century duplicate sales books from Tegernsee can be found today in:

Frankfurt/Main, Hamburg, Karlsruhe, Nuremberg, Speyer, Stuttgart, The Hague, Copenhagen (2), Bodley (31 copies), Oxford Colleges (2), Harvard (4), Cambridge UL (3), Paris, BnF, Yale, Washington, Library of Congress, and further research may trace more in…?

[Source: Paul Needham’s IPI, Bod-inc., BSB-Ink, INKA]

Monastic provenances of early printed books in Bodleian collections: case 1

A Bible from the Benedictines of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice

Fol. a1r: initial

Biblia Latina
Venice: Franciscus Renner, de Heilbronn, 1480.
Folio and 4o (ISTC ib00566000; Bod-inc B-275)
Bodleian Library: Auct. M 2.12


Venice, Benedictines, S. Georgius maior [San Giorgio Maggiore], from 1429 a member of the Congregation of Sta Justina of Padua. The institution was dissolved in 1782.

Maffeo Pinelli (Venice 1735-1785) hereditary director of the official Venetian Press; the catalogue of his library was prepared by Jacopo Morelli, Marciana librarian in 1787 (listed there in vol. I no. 132); all the books were purchased by the London bookseller James Edwards for £600, and auctioned by him in 1789. The Pinelli collection was made of books from aristocratic collections and from religious institutions, mostly from the Veneto.

The Bodleian purchased some 79 incunabula at the Pinelli sale through Peter Elmsley; this volume, lot 5041, cost £1.10.0 as listed in the annotated sale catalogue and in the published List of Books Purchased for the Bodleian for 1789, p. 1.

D11v: "Iste liber est monachorum congregationis S. Justine de Padua deputatus in S. Georgii maioris Venetiarum | .773."

Binding: 18th-century English calf, c.1790, bound for the Bodleian Library; yellow edges; 255 x 185 x 60 mm.

Bibliography: Antonella Barzazi, «Un tempo assai ricche e piene di libri di merito». Le biblioteche dei regolari tra sviluppo e dispersione, in “Alli 10 agosto 1806 soppressione del monastero di S. Giorgio”: Atti del convegno di studi nel bicentenario, Venezia S. Giorgio Maggiore, 10-11 novembre 2006 / a cura di Giovanni Vian, Cesena, Badia di Santa Maria del Monte, 2011, pp. 71-92.

History of the Collection:

The first nucleus of the library at San Giorgio Maggiore dated to at least the early 15th century, though a new building, by Baldassarre Longhena, was ready in 1671 and filled with new books purchased by the Abbot Alvise Squadron, mostly from the booksellers at the Mercerie, the commercial heart of the city.

In 1782 the Venetian Republic began the dissolutions; in 1789 Jacopo Morelli, librarian of the Marciana Library, was charged by the Council of Ten to investigate the state of Venetian religious libraries; in San Giorgio he noted 19 manuscripts and 62 rare books (BMV Archivio, busta: biblioteche delle corporazioni religiose 1789-1812, fasc. 1 ‘Nota dei migliori codici manoscritti e dei piu’ rari libri stampati della Libreria di S. Giorgio Maggiore’).

In 1797 the French entered the city and started taking away to Paris the best books according to a selection prepared by the commissaries Berthollet and Monge: the 470 volumes included 4 manuscripts and 24 printed books from San Giorgio Maggiore. In the same year other books were taken away, without receipt, by a citizen Brunet, described by a local historian as a pedlar turned general (‘venditore di chincaglierie divenuto poi generale’), who removed several books from the libraries of the monasteries of the city. Moreover, the library of the monastery was also runsacked by the population, and rare books taken away, during a short spell when the monks had to leave the monastery. Other volumes were probably taken away by the monks themselves in an attempt to save them. So, ironically, the books that survived are those who had been taken away to Paris or stayed in the Marciana.

In 1806 a new inventory of the library of San Giorgio Maggiore recorded 213 manuscripts and 78 incunabula.  With the annexation of Venice to the French ‘Regno Italico’ in 1806, books from the religious houses of the city were sent to Padua, where volumes from some 40 monasteries were gathered in the ex-monastery of St Anna. They were left there for years, almost forgotten, with plenty of opportunities to remove them. With the fall of Regno Italico in 1815, valuable manuscripts and rare books ended up in the University Library of Padua. However, the books of San Giorgio Maggiore which can be found today in various European and American libraries are witness of different, more complex, events.

Other books surviving from San Giorgio Maggiore are today in:

Oxford, Bodleian Library:

Johannes Crastonus, Lexicon Graeco-latinum, [Milan]: Bonus Accursius, [not after 28 Mar. 1478].
“Iste liber est monasterii sancti Georgii maioris … numero 708”; purchased in 1824 for £10. 10. 0. (Bod-inc C-470).

Franciscus de Platea, Opus restitutionum, usurarum, excommunicationum, [Venice]: Bartholomaeus Cremonensis, 1472.
“Iste liber est … deputatus monasterio sancti Georgii maioris … no. 619”; purchased in 1831 from Thomas Thorpe for £0. 10. 0. (Bod-inc P-334(1))

Plautus, Comoediae, Venice: Simon Bevilaqua, 17 Sept. 1499.
“Reuerendus dominus Andreas Mocenicus prothonotarius apostolicus pro anime sue salute diui Georgii maioris cenobio dicauit signatus C.115”
. Purchased in 1956 from McLeish. (Bod-inc P-356(2))

Cambridge, University Library:

Boethius, De consolatione philosophiae, Nuremberg: Anton Koberger, 8 June 1495.
“Est S. Georgii Maioris Venetiarum”. (Oates 1037)

Clifford C. Rattey, Torquay:

Plato, Opera, Venice: B. de Choris and Simon de Luere, for A. Torresanus, 13 Aug. 1491.
With a ms note on the final leaf [exactly like the Bodleian copy] recording the transfer from the Benedictine monastery of St Justina, Padua, to the monastery of St George the Great Venice; later Robert Finch (1783-1830); Taylor Institute Oxford. (Catalogue of the library at Corbyns, Torquay, formed by Clifford C. Rattey, Leamington Spa, 1965, no. B112)

Copenhagen, Royal Library:

Marsilius Ficinus, De religione christiana. Venice: Otinus de Luna 1500.
“Est sancti Georgij maioris de Venetiis…N. Wandstad Venetiis emit 20 s. 1658”. Georgius Francus de Frankenau (1644-1704). Hafniae 1698. Count Otto Thott (1703-1785), part of a donation which included 6,159 books printed before 1530 and 4,154 manuscripts; nothing known specifically on how he acquired them. (Madsen no. 1591)

Edinburgh, University Library:

Geraldus Odonis, Expositio in Aristotelis Ethicam, Venice: Simon de Luere, for A. Torresanus, 14 July 1500 (ISTC:  io00029000).
With the inscription: “Est Bibliotecae S. Georgij Maioris Venetiarum”. (Papers of Edinburgh Bibl. Society, IX, 1913, no. 150)

Harvard Univ., Houghton Library:

Plinius Secundus, Gaius, Historia naturalis, Parma: Stephanus Corallus, 1476.
On [a]2r “Est Bibl.ae  S. Georgij M.is Venet.rum”; on the lower margin of [P]3r “Iste liber e(st) monachorum congregationis s. Justine de Padua deputatus in s. Georgio Venetiarum signatus numero 545”. In Cambridge Mass, by 1841: Ms note in upper margin of [o]2r “King’s Chapel, Boston, to the library of Harvard University, Cambridge. 1841”. Gift of the Minister, Wardens, and Vestry of King’s Chapel, Boston. (Walsh 3350)

London, Valmadonna Collection:

Johannes Picus de Mirandula, Opera, Venice: Bernardinus de Vitalibus 1498 (ISTC: ip00634000).
On f.1r: “R[everen]dus dns Andreas Mocenicus protonotarius pro anime sue salutis diui Georgii maioris cenobio dicauit signatus numero 114”. Andreas Mocenigo (Venice 1473-1542) was a historian, scholar, Proctor of St Mark and ambassador to Pope Julius II. The book was later in the library of Gotha, and eventually disposed as a duplicate: on f. 1r: black oval stamp: “DUPLUM | BIB | GOTH”.

Lucca, Biblioteca Statale:

Biblia, Venice: J. Herbort, 30 Apr. 1484.
On c. 408r: “Congregationis s. Justine de padua deputatus monachis in monasterio s. Georgij maioris […] habitantibus ac signatus numero 281”. (M. Paoli, Le edizioni del 400 in una raccolta toscana, Lucca, 1990-92, no. 140)

Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France:

Antoninus Florentinus, Summa moralis, Venice: Nicolas Jenson, 1477-1480.
Prov. Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 15th c.; Count Sebastiano d’Ayala (1744-1811); purchased at his sale in 1802. (CIBN A-453*).

Augustinus, De Civitate Dei, Venice: Nicolas Jenson, 2 Oct. 1475.
Prov. Benedictines of  S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 1484; ex-libris of Venice, Biblioteca Marciana, circa 1780 [ ?]. (CIBN A-682)

[Biblia.] – Interpretationes Hebraicorum nominum, Venice: Nicolas Jenson, 1476.
Prov. Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 15th c., evidence from illumination (representation of St George on a5) and erased ex-libris; Vienna, Imperial Library, removed in 1809. (CIBN B-382*)

Cicero, Pseudo-, Rhetorica ad C. Herennium, Milan: Antonio Zarotto [for Marco Roma], 12 Aug. 1474.
Prov. Benedictines of  Sta Justina of Padua (annotation of Van Praet), or possibly Benedictines of  S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice (from Van Praet 1813). (CIBN C-465*)

Dante Alighieri, La Commedia, Florence: Nicolò di Lorenzo, 30 Aug. 1481.
Prov. Orlando di Francesco Franceschi, 1728; Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 18th c.; ex-libris of  Venice, Biblioteca Marciana, circa 1780. (CIBN D-13*)

Franchinus Gafurius, Practica musicae, Milan: Guillaume Le Signerre for Giovanni Pietro da Lomazzo, 30 Sept. 1496.
. Benedictines of S. Sisto of Piacenza, used by Johannes Maria, Piacenza, 16-17th c.; Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 17th c. (CIBN G-000)

Guillelmus Duranti, Rationale divinorum officiorum, [Mainz]: Johann Fust and Peter Schoeffer, 6 Oct. 1459.
On the last leaf: Iste liber est congregationis monachorum sancte Justine deputatus monasterio sancti Georgii maioris Venetiarum ac signatus numero 315″ “Constitit ducatorum decem octo emptus anno 1461”. (CIBN D-278; DeRicci, Mayence, 65).

Aulus Gellius, Noctes Atticae, Brescia: Bonino de’ Bonini, 3 Mar. 1485.
Prov. Benedictines of  Sta Justina of Padua, 16th c.; Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice [ ?]; removed in 1796. (CIBN G-000)

Lactantius, Opera,  Venice: Wendelinus de Spira, 1472.
Prov. Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice. (CIBN L-5*)

Nicolaus Perottus, Rudimenta grammatices, Venice: [Jacopo da Fivizzano for] Marco de’ Conti and Gerardo Alessandrino, 17 Jan. 1476/77.
Prov. Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice. (CIBN P-124)

Bartholomæus Platina, Vitæ pontificum, [Venice:] Johannes de Colonia et Johannes Manthen, 11 June 1479.
Prov. Benedictines of Sta Justine of Padua; Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice; ex-libris of Venice, Biblioteca Marciana. (CIBN P-443*)

Priscianus, Opera, [Milan: Domenico da Vespolate for Bonino Mombrizio, after 24 Feb. 1476.]
Prov. Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice; ex-libris of Venice, Biblioteca Marciana. (CIBN P-595*)

Strabo, Geographia, Venice: Wendelinus de Spira, 1472.
Prov. Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 16th c.; Cardinal Loménie de Brienne (1727-1794); purchased at his sale in 1792. (CIBN S-471*)

Johannes Tortellius, Orthographia, Venice: Nicolas Jenson, 1471.
Prov. Benedictines of  S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice. (CIBN T-290*)

Laurentius Valla, Elegantiæ linguæ latinæ, Venice: Nicolas Jenson, 1471.
Prov. Unidentified coat of arms; Benedictines of S. Giorgio Maggiore, Venice, 16th c.; Cardinal Loménie de Brienne (1727-1794); purchased at his sale in 1792. (CIBN V-37*)

Subiaco, Biblioteca Statale del Monumento di Santa Scolastica:

Bartolomeo Facio, De rebus gestis Alphonsi Aragonij regis libri 7, Mantuam Feb. 1563.
On the titlepage: “Est Bibliothecae S. Georgii Maioris Venetiarum”. (ANT.500 XXIII B 22)

Uppsala, University Library:

Nicolaus Perottus, Cornucopiae linguae latinae, Venice: P. de Paganinis, 14 May 1489 (ISTC ip00288000).
Inscription: “Iste liber est Congregationis monachorum s. Justine de Padua ordinis s. Benedicti deputatus in monasterio s. Georgij maioris Venetiarum signatus 947”. (Sallander 1907 no. 1885).


Even if nothing has been published more in detail, some books are very probably still in Venice.

[Source:  Paul Needham’s IPI, Bod-inc., and Nicolas Petit, BnF]

Adventures in Provenance : the Gough Missals card index

from Sarah Stewart

As part of my SCONUL graduate library traineeship, I spent a week in Rare Books and Special Collections at the Bodleian Library, gaining a basic experience and understanding of rare and antiquarian book acquisitions, cataloguing and provenance. One of my projects during this week involved investigating provenance and cataloguing of a collection of missals held in the Bodleian Special Collections. These missals (dating between 15th-16th centuries, mostly pre-Reformation) were collected by the antiquarian and topographer Richard Gough (1735-1809). Although Gough is primarily known for his collection of antiquarian maps and topographical manuscripts, in addition to his work on the sepulchral monuments of Great Britain, Gough also contributed 200 early printed service books from the English Churches (primarily York and Sarum), including some illuminated Books of Hours, Missals, breviaries, psalters and hymnals.

The card catalogue of provenance evidence in missals collected by Richard Gough

Former antiquarian books librarian David M. Rogers (1917-1995) had created a card catalogue with notes on the annotations and provenances of these missals. When presented with this card catalogue, housed in a brass tin, the ominous categories “No Clue” in addition to “Not Yet Seen” presented themselves. My task was to order some of the missals in the Gough collection from the stacks, and determine what some of the rather cryptic notes on these cards might indicate. If of use, the information would then be added to the library catalogue record, if not already included. Some of the information contained on the index cards had already been recorded and noted, but others, such as the cryptic “pencil” were rather mysterious.

Along with Antiquarian books librarian Dr Alan Coates, I examined several of Gough’s missals at the Special Collections reading room (currently in the Radcliffe Science Library). One of these missals, Gough Missal 129, presented us with an interesting puzzle. On the index card, “anon. bookplate” had been written. This anonymous bookplate turned out to be a coat of arms, but it did not include a name. The coat of arms depicted a single white rose and chief in ermine on a red shield, surmounted by a rampant Pegasus crest. We are currently in the process of investigating this crest, which will aid in determining who might have owned this missal before it became part of the Gough collection.

http://www.cerl.org/web/en/resources/provenance/main CERL’s page for finding and exchanging provenance information.

Re-reading the 15th century in digital images

Digitization of a number of inscriptions on Bodleian incunables has captured some of the evidence for the early use and ownership of pre-1500 printed books. Under the direction of Cristina Dondi, who contributed to the catalogue of incunables in the Bodleian Library (published in 2005), several pages and bindings bearing marks of ownership have been photographed and are accessible via the library’s Special Collections Images page, in the collection “Early Printing in Europe”. It’s now possible to share the copy-specific qualities of these books much more widely than before.

Link to images of provenance evidence in Bodleian incunables.

Looking at the high-quality images available via the Luna browser, early books scholar Martin Davies was able to read an inscription in a book, Scriptores rei militaris ed. Philippus Beroaldus, (catalogue reference Bod-inc S-121) that named the earliest owner. He corrected an earlier reading of the person named — not Anthonius Vieris, as Dr Dondi had originally thought, but Anthonius Urceus, or Antonio Urceo (1446-1500), who was himself a humanist author. The inscription is now recorded as: ‘1496. Kl. martijs hos libros emi e[g]o Anthonius Vrceus de Platone librario sol. .xij.’

See the Bodleian Incunable catalogue (Bod-inc) online