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Decretum: MS McClean 135

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Object information

Current Location: In storage




Author: Gratian




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, ii paper flyleaves + 252 fols. + i contemporary parchment flyleaf + ii paper flyleaves, 362 x 225 mm, four columns (310 x 220 mm), main text in two central columns (260 x 140 mm), varying number of lines, ruled in hard point, running headers, quire marks in small Roman numerals on first recto of quires, catchwords, three quires lost, one between fols. 239 and 240, and two more between fols. 247 and 248, at least three leaves lost at end (three stubs extant).

BINDING: Nineteenth century, mottled calf over pasteboards.

CONTENTS: fols. 1r-252v Gratian, Decretum (end imperfectly, missing most of De consecratione)

DECORATION: Marginal drawings in black, red or green ink, mostly of animals, birds, hybrids or human heads (e.g. fols. 200v, 213r).

ORNAMENTATION: Initials [10-22 ll.] formed of foliate scrollwork entwined with zoomorphic motifs on blue, green red and yellow grounds for Causae; alternate red and blue penwork initials [2 ll.] with occasional blue or red pen flourishing.


History note: At the Benedictine monastery of Wiblingen, Würtemberg by the sixteenth century (ownership inscription on fol. 1r, Monaster. Wiblingensis, list of monks’ names on the recto of the parchment flyleaf and, on the verso, inscription V.a Corpus Iuris Canonici); Sir Thomas Phillips (1792-1872), his MS 1076; Sotheby’s, London, 27 April – 2 May 1903, lot 294; Frank McClean (1837-1904), his bequest, 1904.

Place(s) associated

  • Bologna

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1904) by McClean, Frank


12th Century, Late
Circa 1190 CE - Circa 1199 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: ebdomadas omnes
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS McClean 135
Primary reference Number: 178877
Project ID: 738
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 24 August 2020 Last processed: Friday 8 December 2023

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 (2024) "Decretum" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-07-15 12:59:58

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{{cite web|url= |title=Decretum |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-07-15 12:59:58|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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