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Bible: MS 289.II

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 32 (Rothschild)




Artists: Masters of Zweder van Culemborg




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, 576 fols. (modern pencil foliation 1 – 93, 93a, 94 – 96, 96a, 97 – 574); 215 x 162 (134 x 96) mm, ruled in pink ink, 2 columns, 29 lines, running headers, quire signatures, catchwords.

BINDING: fifteenth century, doeskin chemise, red leather (replacement of 1987) over wooden boards, five metal bosses on each cover, two catchplates on upper cover, slits in chemise and remains from two clasps on lower cover, arms of Lochorst held by angel painted on all three edges; repaired and rebound by the Cockerell bindery in 1987.

CONTENTS: fol. 1r – v Contemporary list of contents in red ink; fols. 2v – 572r Bible, Esd – Psalms, with prologues (Psalms 26 – 41 wrongly numbered in rubrics by original scribe); fols. 572r – 574r Canticles (incipits only), Athanasian Creed, Te Deum.

DECORATION: 33 framed column miniatures and 24 historiated initials, often related in subject-matter, with full or partial foliate bar borders and/or floral, acanthus and spraywork borders for books and prologues:
fol. 2v Prologue to Esd, [U, 5 ll.] Man reading at desk; fol. 3v I Esd, King Cyrus conversing with high priest; fol. 15r Neh, Nehemiah writing at desk and Neh, [V, 9 ll.] Nehemiah reading; fol. 31v II Esd, King Josiah offering God a lamb in the Temple and [E, 9 ll.] Esdras writing at desk; fol. 52r Prov, Solomon enthroned points to open book held by kneeling priest and [P, 8 ll.] Man reading; fol. 76v Eccles, Solomon holding book and conversing with man and [V, 8 ll.] Man holding scroll; fol. 85r Cant, Solomon enthroned conversing with the black bride (not depicted as black), God blesses them from above; fol. 90v Wisd, Solomon as judge enthroned among his counsellors and [D, 8 ll.] Tonsured cleric with scroll inscribed Sentite de domino; fol. 108r Ecclus, Priest addressing men; fol. 152r Prologue to Job, [C, 7 ll.] St Jerome reading at lectern; fol. 153v Job, Job on dung heap conversing with three women, devil behind him, God blessing from above, and [V, 8 ll.] City on fire; fol. 180r Prologue to Tob, [C, 7 ll.] St Jerome reading at desk; fol. 180v Tob, Tobit conversing with angel and [T, 7 ll.] Tobit attacked by man with club; fol. 191r Prologue to Esth, [L, 7 ll.] St Jerome reading at desk; fol. 191v Esth, King Ahasuerus watching the hanging of Haman; fol. 205r Prologue to Judith, [A, 8 ll.] St Jerome reading roll at lectern; fol. 205v Judith, Judith beheading Holofernes and [A, 8 ll.] Judith and her maid returning to city with Holofernes’s head; fol. 220r Prologue to Isai, Isaiah conversing with three man; fol. 222r Isai, [V, 6 ll.] Man reading; fol. 278v Jer, Jeremiah conversing with God; fol. 345r Bar, Baruch conversing with king and courtier; fol. 354r Ezek, Ezekiel in study; fol. 415r Prologue to Dan, Daniel praying in lions’ den, Habakkuk holding pot and basket carried by angel; fol. 416v Dan, [A, 6 ll.] Man with book; fol. 441r Osea, Hosea holding Gomer’s hand, both looking at angel above and [V, 6 ll.] Man with book; fol. 449v Joel, [V, 7 ll.] Joel conversing with men; fol. 453r Amos, [V, 6 ll.] Amos conversing with king; fol. 460r Abd, [V, 7 ll.] Obadiah blessed by Gods; fol. 462r Jonah, Jonah cast from boat and swallowed by whale; fol. 464v Mich, [V, 5 ll.] Micah conversing with king; fol. 469v Prologue to Nah, [N, 6 ll.] Man reading book; fol. 470r Nah, God blessing two prophets; fol. 473v Hab, [O, 8 ll.] Habakkuk praying to God; fol. 476r Prologue to Soph, [T, 6 ll.] Man reading book; fol. 477r Soph, Zephaniah and God holding scroll; fol. 479v Agg, [I, 6 ll.] Nimbed scribe at desk; fol. 482v Zach, Zechariah in church holding scroll and blessed by God; fol. 492v Mal, Malachi holding scroll and blessed by God; fol. 497r Ps 1, David enthroned playing harp; fol. 508r Ps 26, David enthroned pointing at eyes; fol. 515r Ps 38, David holding scroll; fol. 521v Ps 51, Man seizing woman by hair and beating her with club; fol. 522r Ps 52, Fool riding stick and whipping himself; fol. 529r Ps 68, David in water praying to God; fol. 538r Ps 80, David playing bells; fol. 546r Ps 97, Clerics singing at lectern; fol. 547r Ps 101, David enthroned praying; fol. 555r Ps 109, God holding orb and seated on bench invites Christ holding book to sit on his right.

ORNAMENTATION: Blue or pink white-patterned initials [4 – 14 ll.] with foliate infill on gold grounds for some biblical books and prologues; blue initials [1 – 2 ll.] with red pen-flourished infill and extensions; capitals highlighted in red.


History note: Made for a member of the prominent Utrecht family of Lochorst (arms on edges); given by Sarah and Robert Wight to Maria Mathews in 1866, and by her to her sister Ann Byam Wight in 1871 (inscriptions on paper inserts formerly in MS 289.I, now kept on file); Rev. E.S. Dewick (1844 – 1917); his bequest, 1917.

Place(s) associated

  • Utrecht

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1917) by Dewick, Rev. E.S.


15th Century#
Circa 1420 CE - Circa 1430 CE

People, subjects and objects depicted

Materials used in production


Components of the work

Support composed of parchment
Text Height 134 mm Width 96 mm
Page Height 215 mm Width 162 mm

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: [sep]tuaginta vobis (fol. 3r)
  • Location: Fol. 3r
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS 289.II
Primary reference Number: 170621
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 8 September 2020 Last processed: Thursday 7 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Manuscripts and Printed Books

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Bible" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-07-18 19:18:43

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