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Patent of Nobility: MS 189

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Object information


Patent of Nobility


PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Paper and parchment, vii original paper flyleaves + 44 fols. + iv original paper flyleaves, 310 x 215 mm (200 x 130 mm), 34-36 long lines, ruled in dark pink ink.

BINDING: Sixteenth or seventeenth century, Spanish, brown leather over pasteboards, gold- and blind-tooled design with floral bars and profile medallions, IHS monogram in centre of both covers.

CONTENTS: fols. ii recto - vii verso Statements by witnesses to the Patent and by Bernal Ramirez; fols. 1r-42r Patent of Nobility granted by Philip II of Spain (1556-1598) to Bernal Ramirez (d. 1634) in Valladolid in 1579.

DECORATION: Full-page miniature with arms and crest of the Ramirez family in the lower half and Bernal Ramirez kneeling before a vision of the Virgin and Child in the upper half, central bar with legend DON FELIPE POR LA GRA[CIA DI DIO] (fol. 1v) with foliate, floral and jewelled border on red and gold grounds.

ORNAMENTATION: Rubrics in gold capitals [3 ll.] on blue or red panels; initials [3-5 ll.] with minor flourishing in black ink; linefillers and marginal decoration in black ink.


History note: Bernal Ramires (d. 1634); to his son (note recording his father’s death and tomb on the recto of the second flyleaf at the end); stamp inside lower cover: Sold by E. Avery, London; William Bragge (1823-1884), FSA, Sheffield; Sotheby’s, 7 June 1876, lot 128; Samuel Sandars (1837-1894); presented by him to the Fitzwilliam Museum in 1887.

Place(s) associated

  • Valladolid ⪼ Spain

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Presented (1887) by Sandars, Samuel

People, subjects and objects depicted

Materials used in production


Components of the work

Support composed of paper parchment

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: Caguelo de solar conocido
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS 189
Primary reference Number: 176660
Project ID: 413
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 24 August 2020 Last processed: Sunday 21 March 2021

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2022) "Patent of Nobility" Web page available at: Accessed: 2022-07-06 06:15:00

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{{cite web|url= |title=Patent of Nobility |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-07-06 06:15:00|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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