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Cicero, Selected works: MS 255

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Cicero, Selected works


Author: Cicero
Author: Sallust
Scribe: Scribe of the Albi Strabo




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, i parchment flyleaf + 89 fols. + i parchment flyleaf, 170 x 120 mm (105 x 65 mm), 22 long lines, ruled in crayon and plummet, catchwords, leaf signatures

BINDING: fifteenth century, brown leather over wooden boards, sewn on three supports, gold-tooled and blind-stamped with interlaced knots and roundels, small metal bosses at the corners of both covers.

fols. 1r-31v Cicero, De senectute
fols. 32r-47v Cicero, Paradoxa
fols. 48r-62v De consolatu petendo
fols. 63r-81r Cicero, De amicitia
fols. 81v-84r Pseudo-Sallust, Invectiva in Ciceronem
fols. 84r-89v Pseudo-Cicero, Invectiva in Crispum Sallustium

ORNAMENTATION: Four white vinescroll initials [9 ll.] in gold edged in black and yellow on shaped grounds of dark red, blue and green for the beginning of texts (fols. 1r, 32r, 48r, 63r), the initial on fol. 1r accompanied in the lower margin by a shield of arms, azure three lions’ heads or below a fess or and in chief argent a rose gules with the letters A.S. (probably a later addition), encircled by wingless dragon with a gold cross on its back; blue, gold, and red initials [1-2 ll.] for lesser divisions and the beginning of the Invectiva in Ciceronem (fols. 81v and 84r); rubrics in multi-coloured epigraphic capitals in the sequence gold, blue, red, green and purple on alternate lines; smaller coloured epigraphic capitals for the opening lines of each work, each of the paradoxa, and the names of the speakers in De amicitia.


History note: Purchased by Sir Thomas Phillips (1792-1872), his MS 4175, from Stewart, a London bookseller, in 1830; Sotheby’s, 5 June, 1899, lot 379; purchased for the Museum from Messrs Leighton in 1899.

Place(s) associated

  • Padua
  • Venice

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bought (1899) by Messrs Leighton


15th Century, third quarter#
Circa 1450 CE - Circa 1475 CE

People, subjects and objects depicted


  • Cambridge Illuminated

Materials used in production


Components of the work

Support composed of parchment

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: [confec]tio fuit
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS 255
Primary reference Number: 176661
Project ID: 3453
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 24 August 2020 Last processed: Thursday 3 August 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Cicero, Selected works" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-10-01 21:12:39

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