Holkham, Holkham Hall, Library of the Earl of Leicester, 668

| Shelfmark | Date and Language | Contents |
| Physical Description | History | Record History | Bibliography |

Repository: Holkham Hall, Library of the Earl of Leicester
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Date and Language
Date:s. xiv/xv
Language: English
Dialect:Scribal Dialect: Scribe 1 - Lichfield; Scribe 2 - Lichfield; Scribe 3 - Staffordshire; Scribe 4 - too short to assess. Linguistic Atlas Grid Reference: not mapped (McIntosh, Samuels and Benskin 1986, p. 239).
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A late fourteenth/fifteenth century manuscript of the Prick of Conscience.

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Physical Description
Support: Parchment
Extent:230 x 140 mm
Collation: 1-168; 176; catchword in scribal hand at end of each quire, no quire or leaf signatures.
Layout:Writing space of 180 x 80 mm (Latin apparatus extends to full width of ruled column, c. 92 mm). Ruled for 33 lines in brown crayon. Some pricking visible at lower verticals.
Writing: Scribe 1 writes in an Anglicana Formata hand from the beginning of the text to line 1047, lines 1076-2112, 8086-9624, alternating with Scribe 2. Characteristics: double compartment a; flat topped t; ŝ; v/long r in medial position; looped d; sigma s in initial and final position; ?. Scribe 2 writes in an Anglicana Formata hand for lines 4482-5480, 5498-767, and 5818-8085, alternating with Scribe 1. Scribe 3 writing lines 1048-75 on f. 16v in an Anglicana Formata hand. Scribe 4 (perhaps) writing for a few lines on f. 104v.
Decoration:Folio 1r, seven-line initial in blue and gold with foliate infill (gold on blue ground), extending into full border of double stave (pink and blue), with curling foliate decoration in blue and gold (gold almost completely rubbed off to show red base underneath). Very badly worn. Large initials that are executed are in blue with red penwork flourishing; Latin apparatus in red; ff. 1r-2r, first letter of each line stroked in red, couplets bracketed in red. Any annotation (and colophon) is in slightly darker brown ink than text hand. Four-line blue initials with extended red penwork into left margin e.g. ff. 6v (stained), 14v.
Binding: Not medieval. Date: early nineteenth century. Rebound by John Jones of Liverpool (worked for Holkham 1816-1823), brown gilt calf. Spine: STIMULUS/CONSCIENTIAE/MS./ANGL./SAEC.XIV./668. Coke family ostrich crest in gilt on upper board.
Foliation:ff. 134. Manuscript unfoliated.
Additions:Marginal notes in a fifteenth century Anglicana hand.
Condition:First and last folios badly stained.
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Origin:On f. 1r is written, 'Nomen scriptoris Johannes plenus amoris [...] benedicat rex orientis'.
Acquisition:No definite information. Other medieval English manuscripts at Holkham usually come from the library of Sir Edward Coke (1552-1634), whose inventory was published in Hassall 1950.
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Record History
Catalogued and encoded: Rebecca Farnham, University of Birmingham, August 2003. With special thanks to Dr. Suzanne Reynolds, Holkham Hall for supplying information regarding: folio dimensions, collation, layout, decoration, binding, and acquisition.
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Related Manuscripts and other documents Scribal Scribe 1 of Holkham Hall 668 is also Scribe 1 of Oxford, Trinity College, 16B (D. 16B) (see Lewis and McIntosh 1982, pp. 121-122) and Scribe 1 of Oxford, Bodleian Library, Eng. poet. a.1. This scribe can also be found working on various other documents including copying in the chronicle and cartulary of the Cistercian abbey of Stoneleigh, Warwickshire, including documents to the year 1411 (Doyle 1987, p. 5, 12; Hilton, 1960, frontispiece, pl. V). He is also found working on legal documents such as two views of frankpledge for the south Warwickshire manor of Radway. Doyle believes the copyist to be a secular clerk or a layman rather than a monk, a 'paid professional, pursuing his career...in and around the diocese of Lichfield and Coventry' (Doyle 1987, p. 13).
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