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Bod-Inc: H-116


Vitae sanctorum patrum [English] The lyff of the faders.


Analysis of Content

Aa1r [Title-page.]

Aa2r [Caxton, William: Note on the translation.] ‘Here foloweth the right deuote moche lowable and recommendable lyff of the olde auncyent holy faders hermytes late translated out of latyn in to frenche and dylygently corrected in the cyte of Lyon the yere of our lord M.CCCC. lxxxvi . . . and after in the yere of our lorde M CCCC.lxxxxi reduced in to Englysshe followyng the copye alwaye under correcyon of doctours of the chirche.’

Aa2r Caxton, William: ‘The prologue of the translatour.’ Incipit: ‘[F]or as moche as dayly amonge the infenyte multytude of mortall people . . .’

Aa2v ‘The declaracion of the table of ye chapytres.’

Aa8v [Title-page to the first part.] ‘Here foloweth the fyrste parte.’

a1r Hieronymus [pseudo-]: Vitae sanctorum patrum [English]. Part I. Translated by William Caxton. Incipit: ‘[B]lessyd be god our souerayn creatour, dyrectour infallyble . . .’ Follows the order of the Latin lives in ed. Schulz-Flügel: Prol., i–xxx, xxxii–xxxiii, Epil. 1-4, Epil. 5-16. The translator is named in the colophon.

d4v Hieronymus: Vitae sanctorum patrum: Vita Pauli. Incipit: ‘[M]any aske sayth saynt Jherom . . .’ Follows ed. Hurter, 36-42.

d8r Athanasius: ‘Vita sancti Antonii.’ Translated from Greek by Enagrion [i.e. Evagrius]. Incipit: ‘[S]aynt Anthonye born in Egipte . . .’ Follows PL LXIII 127-68.

f3r Hieronymus: Vitae sanctorum patrum: Vitae Hilarionis et Malchi. Incipit: ‘[S]aynt Hylaryon was borne in the countree . . .’ Follows ed. Hurter, 42-59 (Hilarion), 60-4 (Malchus).

g5r Hieronymus [pseudo-]: Vitae sanctorum patrum: Vita Pauli. Compiled by Tyrannius Rufinus. Incipit: ‘[S]aynt Poul surnamyd the symple was one . . .’ Follows ed. Schulz-Flügel no. xxxi.

g6r Hieronymus [pseudo-]: Vitae sanctorum patrum. Paula (ed. Hieronymus): ‘[S]aynt Jherom sayth: Yf alle my membres were torned . . .'; Pelagia: Emonge you that woll know that . . .; Maria Egyptiaca: ‘[S]aynt Jerome recounteth that in the countrey of Palestyn . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 671-90; Marina: ‘[S]ometyme a seculer may whiche hadde . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 691-4; Eufrosina: ‘[I]n Alexandrye was a man named Pafunce . . .'; Frontonius: ‘[S]aynt Frontynyan beynge in the countree . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 437-42; Symeon: ‘[S]aynt Symeon was not he . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 325-34; Eufraxia: ‘[I]n the tyme that regned Theodocyen . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 623-42; Macharius: ‘[A]fter the reporte and wytnesse . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 415-26; Pasthumius: ‘[I]esu Cryste oure Sauyour lyke . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 429-38; Onuffrius: ‘[S]aynt Phaphunce hauynge desyre for . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 211-20; Abraham: ‘[S]aynt Jherom wyllynge to write the lyffe . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 281-92; Pachomius: ‘[I]n recitynge of saynt Pachomy . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 227-72; Cristianus: ‘[F]olowynge the macere that is begon . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 76-7.

s1r Leontius, Bishop of Neapolis, Cyprus: Vita of Johannes, Bishop of Alexandria: ‘[F]or to haue a begynnynge to telle . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 337-84.

x3v Hieronymus [pseudo-]: Vitae sanctorum patrum. Eugenia: ‘[S]omtyme an emperour of ye Romayns . . .'; follows PL LXXIII 605-24; Basilius: ‘[S]aynt Basil amonge the other of his . . .'; Effrem: ‘[S]aynt Jherom makith menconnin ye laste . . .’

z1r [Title-page to part II.] ‘Secunda pars. Here foloweth the seconde parte.’

z1v [Rufinus, Tyrannius]: ‘Prolgue.’ Incipit: ‘[W]hat is he that doubteth . . .’ Follows PL LXXIII 739-40.

z2r [Hieronymus pseudo-: Adhortationes sanctorum patrum.] ‘Exhortacyons.’ [Latin version by Tyrannius Rufinus.] Incipit: ‘[S]ome relygyouses persones questyoned . . .’ Follows PL LXXIII 739-810.

ee5r [Hieronymus pseudo-: Libelli.] Incipit: ‘[A] relygyouse requyted the abbot Anthonye . . .’ Follows PL LXXIII 855-1022.

rr6r [Title-page to part III.] ‘Tercia pars. Here foloweth the thyrde parte.’

rr6v [Hieronymus pseudo-: Vitae sanctorum patrum.] Incipit: ‘[O]fte tymes my brethern & frendes ye haue . . .’ Follows PL LXXIII 813-48. Extracts from Cassian and Sulpicius Severus.

tt3v [Title-page to part IV.] ‘Quarta pars. Here foloweth the fourth parte.’

tt4r [Hieronymus pseudo-: Vitae sanctorum patrum.] Incipit: ‘[O] venerable lord and fader Martyn preest . . .’ Follows PL LXXIII 1025-62.

vv1v [Title-page to part V.] ‘Quinta pars. Here foloweth the fyfthe parte.’

vv1v [Hieronymus pseudo-: De laude et effectu virtutum (Vitae sanctorum patrum pt. V).] Incipit: ‘[F]or as moche my right dere & beloued brother that somtyme . . .’

xx5v Colophon.]

xx6v [Title-page.]


Imprint: Westminster: Wynkyn de Worde, [before 21 Aug.] 1495. Folio.


Collation: Aa a–o8 p6 q–x8 y10 z aa–tt8 vv xx6.

Illustrations: Woodcuts: see BMC.


ISTC: ih00213000

Hain: C 2961;

Goff: Goff H‑213;


Proctor: Pr 9697;

Others: Duff 235; Caxton, Exhibition, BL, 87, no. 95; Needham, Pardoner, p. 93; Oates 4120-2; Sheppard 7431-2; STC 14507. Facsimile: English Experience, no. 874 (Amsterdam, 1977).

LCN: 14764872


Copy number: H-116(1)

On this copy see Coates–Jensen 244, no. 2. Leaf Aa1v is blank in this copy, whereas some copies have a device.

Wanting sheet ll3.6, the place of which is taken by a duplicate of ll2.7; wanting also leaf xx6 containing the printer's device and the woodcut title.

Binding: Eighteenth-century English calf (before 1760); gold-tooled spine. Formerly chained: staple-marks of a hasp at the head of the upper cover.

Size: 268 × 202 × 70 mm.

Size of leaf: 262 × 190 mm.

Occasional scribbles and pen-trials; in lower margin of vv6v, in a sixteenth-century hand: ‘Though thes be a boke confabeled and it lies hit is the thorothe(?) thirt(?) that all things'. Across the fore-edge is written ‘65', part of a non-Bodleian shelfmark also written on the verso of the front endleaf: ‘65 J S.’

Provenance: Bristol, Redcliff Pitt, Hospital of St John the Baptist, Augustinians; see Ker, Medieval Libraries, 13; inscription on Aa2r: ‘Iste liber pertinet ad domum siue hospi[ta]le sancti Johannis Baptiste situatum in Redcliff Pitte in suburbio oppidi Bristoll''; similar inscription on xx5v. William Hall (sixteenth century); signature on xx5v. Thomas Tanner (1674-1735); signature on Aa1r. Bequeathed in 1735.

Former Bodleian shelfmark: Auct. QQ sup. 2.15.

SHELFMARK: Arch. G d.29.

Copy number: H-116(2)

Wanting leaf Aa1.

Binding: Nineteenth-century blind-tooled calf; bound for the Bodleian Library; the gold stamp of the Library on both covers.

Size: 293 × 220 × 56 mm.

Size of leaf: 276 × 191 mm.

On Aa8v ‘Here foloweth the fyrste parte' [printed], followed by a note in a sixteenth-century English hand: ‘of knaves & lyes. Her beginnyth ye boke of ye gret hoorr of Babylon alias ye bock of lyes'. Other early marginal notes in English in one sixteenth-century hand; also occasional scribbles.

Provenance: John Thurlowe (sixteenth century); name on h4r: ‘Thomas Poppe is a brell per me Johne Thurlowe'; also on n7r: ‘Thomas P[ ]', ‘John Thurlowe'. Francis Goldingham (1529?–1607); signature on xx6v: ‘Franciscus Goldingham'. Acquired between 1847 and c.1892; not in Catalogus (1843) with Appendix.

Former Bodleian shelfmark: Auct. QQ sup. 2.16.

SHELFMARK: Arch. G d.30.

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