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13th-century manuscript containing extracts from the writings of Gilbert of Hoyland, St Bernard, St Gregory, St Augustine, and other theological works.

Identifier: Adv.MS.18.8.3

Scope and Contents

Manuscript produced in England containing the theological works of various authors. The manuscript has been dated to the 12th century by Mikkers; to the end of the 12th century by Schenkl; to the 12th-13th century Leclercq (quoted in Mikkers); and by Dutton and Borland to the 13th century.

The manuscript is written by various contemporary hands in a protogothic bookhand. It is written in a single column with 26-30 lines to a page.

The contents of the volume are as follows:

Title, shelfmark, and ownership inscriptions. Folios i-ii.

Gilbert of Hoyland, 'Sermones in Canticum Salomonis'. Extracts. Folio 1r-56r.

St Bernard, 'Sermones in Cantica Canticorum'. Extracts. Folios 56r-89v.

St Bernard, 'Liber de diligendo Deo', 'De consideratione', and other works. Folios 89v-103r.

Brief extracts from the works of Prosper, Fulbert, Jerome, Guerricus and others. Folios 103-114v.

Extracts from St Gregory; homilies, 'Expositio super Cantica Canticorum', on Ezekiel (twice), 'Moralium in Job'. Folios 115r-157r.

St Augustine, 'de libro confessionum'. Folios 157r-163r.

Hugh of St Victor, 'De institutione noviciorum'. Extracts. 163r-166v.

Brief extracts from Cassian, St Augustine, Prosper Gregory, Seneca, Jerome, Bernard, and others. Folios 166v-199v. (Folios 184v-186v are blank, not lined or ruled).

'Versus de libro cathonis'. Folios 199v-201r.

Folios 201v-205v are blank, not lined or ruled.

Extracts from the New and Old Testaments. Folios 206r-245r.

Brief extracts from St Augustine, Isidore, Seneca, and other Patristic works. Folios 245r-257r.

'Dulcis Jesu memoria'. Folios 257v-258r.

Prick marks for both the horizontal and vertical lines are visible on most leaves.

The manuscript is decorated with initials in red or blue, some with penwork decoration. Occasionally descenders in the lower margin end in spirals and other flourishes. Rubrics and authors are given in red.

Each folio has been lined and ruled recto and verso.

A scribal foliation in Arabic numerals runs until folio 129, although it is incorrect on folios 120-129 and has since been corrected by modern Library foliation.

Catchwords are present on the following folios: 8v, 16v (cropped), 24v, 32v (cropped), 40v (cropped), 51v (cropped), 59v, 67v, 91v (cropped), 101v, 109v (cropped), 110v, 112v (cropped), 114v, 126v (cropped), 142v, 156v (cropped), 197v (cropped), 245v (cropped).

There is evidence of contemporary repairs to the vellum throughout.


  • Creation: 1st half of 13th century.


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Normal access conditions apply.

Conditions Governing Use

Normal reproduction conditions apply, subject to any copyright restrictions.


1 Volumes ; 15.5cm x 11.5cm x 9cm

Language of Materials



i-ii + 258 folios.


1², 2-6⁸, 7¹⁰ (+ 1 after 8), 8-12⁸, 13⁸ (+ a bifolium after 1), 14⁸ (+ 1 after 8), 15⁴, 16¹², 17-19⁸, 20⁶, 21-23¹⁰, 24¹⁰ (+1 after 9), 25⁸, 26-30¹⁰, 31⁴.

Custodial History

There are early 16th-century ownership inscriptions of John, canon of Blagdon, on folios ii verso and 53 recto.

16th-century pen trials by a Thomas Parys are on the paste-down of the front board and on folio i recto and verso.

The manuscript was in the possession of Sir James Balfour of Denmilne. His ownership inscription is present on the recto of folio ii. On the recto of folio i is the Denmilne number, '24'. Balfour's device is present on folio 258r.

The manuscript was bought by the Library of the Faculty of Advocates at the sale of Sir James Balfour's goods in 1698. There are ownership inscriptions for the Library on the rectos of folios ii and 1.

The previous shelfmark assigned to the manuscript by the Library of the Faculty of Advocates is present on the recto of folio i, 'A.6.28', since superseded.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

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


Borland, C. R. 'Catalogue of Mediaeval Manuscripts in the Library of the Faculty of Advocates at Edinburgh', 4 Volumes. (Unpublished manuscript, Edinburgh, 1906-1908). Volume I, folios 206-207. NLS Reference: FR.198a/2.

Cunningham, I. C. 'Sir James Balfour's Manuscript Collection: The 1698 Catalogue and other sources', in 'Edinburgh Bibliographical Society Transactions', Volume VI, Part 6 (2004), pages 191-255.

Dutton, M. L. 'The Works of Gilbert of Hoyland: Manuscripts and Printed Editions', in 'Cistercian Studies', Volume 35, Issue 2 (2000), pages 161-185.

'Folio Catalogue of Manuscripts: Miscellaneous Manuscripts' (Unpublished manuscript, Edinburgh [after 1837]), folio 5. NLS Reference: FR.195.

Mikkers, E. 'De vita et operibus Gilberti de Hoylandia', in 'Citeaux', Volume 14 (1963), pages 33-43, 265-279.

Römer, F. 'Die Handschriftliche Überlieferung der Werke des heiligen Augustinus: Band II/2 Grossbritannien und Irland: Verzeichnis nach Bibliotheken' (Wien, 1972), page 116.

Schenkl, H. 'Bibliotheca Patrum Latinorum Britannica: Zweiten Bandes dritte Abtheilung, die schottischen Bibliotheken' (Wien, 1896), page 9.

'Summary Catalogue of the Advocates' Manuscripts' (Edinburgh, 1971), page 101, number 1278; page 130, number 1718; page 135, number 1802.

Physical Description


The binding is probably of the 16th century and is of red leather over oak boards. The front board had 5 metal bosses in the corners and centre, 4 of which still remain. The back board has two metal bosses. There is a remnant of a clasp, since missing. The back has remnants of stickers on both the head and tail ends. The sticker on the head end is worn and illegible. The sticker on the tail end is a Library shelfmark. There are remnants of gilding on the three edges of the leaves.

National Library of Scotland Catalogue of Manuscripts
National Library of Scotland Archives and Manuscripts Division
Description rules
International Standard for Archival Description - General
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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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