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15th-century English manuscript containing three Middle English texts: 'Liber maundevyle'; the chivalric poem 'Sir Cleges'; and, 'De regimine principum' by Thomas Hoccleve.

Identifier: Adv.MS.19.1.11

Scope and Contents

The contents of the manuscript are as follows:

(i) ‘Liber maundevyle` (folio 1). The manuscript belongs to sub-group E of the Defective Version on which the earliest editions were based (`English manuscripts of Mandeville`s Travels`, pages 169-171). Several leaves are missing, containing the end of the prologue and beginning of chapter 1 (after folio 1), chapters 6-9 (after folio 10), and the end of chapter 32 onwards.

(ii) `Sir Cleges` (folio 71). ‘The Index of Middle English Verse’, number 1890. The poem is printed from this manuscript in ‘Middle English Metrical Romances’, pages 877-895. The last leaf, containing line 545 onwards, is missing.

(iii) `De regimine principum` by Thomas Hoccleve (folio 80). ‘Index of Middle English Verse’, number 2229. Two leaves containing verses 739-754 are missing after folio 172.

Each of the three texts is in a different hand but they were probably put together at an early date as the titles and some marginal notes in (i) and (iii) appear to be in one 15th-century hand. The same hand wrote the title `Liber de regimine principum` (which has been erased) at the beginning of (ii). Large blue initials with red penwork (some cut out) in (i) and (iii). A blank, probably for a miniature, was left on folio 119 recto, and there is a blank leaf between (i) and (ii).

There are numerous scribblings and pen trials, mostly 16th century. They include the verses `Erthe upon Erthe`, ‘Index of Middle English Verse’, number 3985 (folios 70, 176 verso) and `Christ Triumphant`, ‘Index of Middle English Verse’, number 1308 (folio 177 verso), a list of thirteen Fridays (folio 82), an account for cheese from Suffolk and Essex (folio 155), notes on Hoccleve (folios 116, 176), and sketches of armorial bearings (folios 176 verso-178).


  • Creation: 15th century.


1 Volumes (178 folios.)

Language of Materials

English, Middle (1100-1500)


Collation: 1⁸ (-2), 2⁸ (-4, 5), 3-9⁸, 10¹⁰, 11-13⁸, 14⁸ (-6), 15-20⁸, 21⁸ (- 6), 22⁸ (-8), 23⁸ (-l, 6-8), 24². Catchwords and signatures in (i) and (iii). (i) 26-32 lines; (ii) 28-31 lines; (iii) 31 lines.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Paper: watermarks scissors (cf. Briquet 3763-3765) in gatherings 1, 3, 9-18; waggon (cf. Briquet 3528, 3540) in gatherings 4, 19-23; dog (cf. Briquet 3612) in gatherings 5-8. Outer leaves of gatherings 1-3 and two endleaves vellum.

Custodial History

There are several names in the manuscript, of which the following appear to have been owners: Thomas Haselfote, 1544 (folios 1 verso, 119, 123, 176 verso), William Patrike (folio 10), William Costerdemonger (folio 172 verso), Edward Thornton (folio 176 verso), and Sir Simeon Stuart, Baronet, of Hartley Mauditt (folio 3); other names are John Watsoun (folios 99, 119), William Benson (folio 109), Robert Hardyng (folio 117), Edward Gote (folio 118 verso), John Smith and John Atkinson (folio 150), William Sampson (folio 176 verso), John Pope and John Leggit (folio 177). The manuscript was acquired by the Advocate’s Library by 1808.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Presented, 1925, by the Faculty of Advocates to the nation on the foundation of the National Library of Scotland.

Existence and Location of Copies

Microfilms available:


Mf.Sec.MSS.695 (manuscript may not have been filmed in full).


The manuscript is described in `English manuscripts of Mandeville`s Travels` by M C Seymour, ‘Edinburgh Bibliographical Society Transactions’, iv (1974), pages 195-196, and ‘Catalogue of Manuscripts containing Middle English Romances’ by G Guddat-Figge (Munich, 1976), pages 119-120.

Brown, C, and R H Robbins. ‘Index of Middle English Verse’ (New York, 1943).

‘Middle English Metrical Romances’, edited by W H French and C B Hale (New York, 1950).

Physical Description

0.00 linear metres178 folios.210.00 x 290.00 millimetres


210.00 x 290.00 millimetres

National Library of Scotland Catalogue of Manuscripts
National Library of Scotland
03 02 2015
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Finding Aid Prepared Using Local Descriptive Rules
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Repository Details

Part of the National Library of Scotland Archives and Manuscripts Division Repository

Archives and Manuscript Division
National Library of Scotland
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Edinburgh EH1 1EJ
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