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Homeliae super Vetus Testamentum: MS McClean 117

Object information

Current Location: In storage


Homeliae super Vetus Testamentum


Author: Origen




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, i paper flyleaf + 169 fols. + i paper flyleaf, 362 x 233 mm (241-264 x 163 mm), two columns, 39-40 lines, ruled in plummet, written above top line, quire marks, at least two leaves lost after fol. 169 (stubs remain)

BINDING: nineteenth century, painted brown paper and brown leather over pasteboards, blue and white endbands, mottled red edges.

fols. 1r–51v Origen, Homeliae on Joshua (translated by Rufinus, with Prologue by Rufinus)
fols. 51v–69r Origen, Homiliae on Judges (translated by Rufinus)
fols. 69r–76r Origen, Homilia on I Samuel (translated by Rufinus)
fols. 76v–93r Origen, Homeliae on Isaiah (translated by St Jerome)
fols. 93r–135r Origen, Homiliae on Jeremiah (translated by St Jerome), with Capitula (fol. 93r)
fols. 135r–169v Origen, Homiliae on Ezekiel (translated by St Jerome, ends imperfectly, with Prologue by St Jerome)

ORNAMENATION: Seven ornamental initials [13-39 ll.] drawn in brown ink with intricate foliate interlace and occasional dragon grotesque, for major text divisions (fols. 1r, 1v, 20r, 51v, 69r, 76v, 135v); ornamental initials [3-28 ll.] in red, green, blue, grey or turquoise, with reserved lines and foliate, arabesque and geometric motifs in the same colour, for most Homilies, Incipit (fol. 1r), and a subdivision of Homily 9 on Joshua (fol. 23v); red, green or blue penwork initials [1-2 ll.] for entries in Capitula (fol. 93r); red initials [1-2 ll.] for minor text divisions after fol. 151v; display script [1-4 ll.] in red, blue, green and grey, frequently with minor decoration in same colours, for text following initials to the Prologue to Homilies on Joshua, and text following initial to some Homilies (fols. 1v, 4r, 69r, 76v, 93r); numerical quire marks, occasionally with reserved lines and minor decoration; Nota marks in red and brown ink, occasionally with minor decoration.


History note: Written and illuminated in the Cistercian Abbey of Morimondo, diocese of Milan (fol. 144r, erased ex libris, in hand of rubricator: Liber Sancte marie de Morimundo); recorded along with Fitzwilliam Museum, MS McClean 116 (cat. 13) in the twelfth-century library catalogue (Leclercq 1961, 178: Tractatus origenis super genesim. Et de ueteri testamento duo volumina); recorded in the seventeenth-century library catalogue (Vatican City, BAV, MS Barb. lat. 3229, fol. 463, reprinted in Leclercq 1961, 182: Homelie Origenis in Pentateucom); unidentified inscriptions (label with number 39 or 38 on spine; 62 penciled on inner front board; numbers 144/25 on pastedown of lower cover; a circle of red wax inside upper board); U. Hoepli, Milan, catalogue no. 83 (1883), no. 102 (cutting from catalogue pasted inside upper cover; Ferrari 1980, 258; Ferrari 1993, 299); bought from him in Milan by Frank McClean (1837-1904) in 1892; his bequest, 1904.

Acquisition and important dates

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


12th Century, second half#
Circa 1170 CE - Circa 1190 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: Cum quadam adiectione
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS McClean 117
Primary reference Number: 184066
Project ID: 617
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 24 August 2020 Last processed: Thursday 7 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) "Homeliae super Vetus Testamentum" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-06-25 10:41:03

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{{cite web|url= |title=Homeliae super Vetus Testamentum |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-06-25 10:41:03|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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