File NLW MS 21878E [RESTRICTED ACCESS]. - Biblia Ecclesie Cathedralis Norwicensis,

Identity area

Reference code



Biblia Ecclesie Cathedralis Norwicensis,


  • [mid 13 cent.]. (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

ii, 346 ff. : Parchment ; 340 x 210 mm. (written space between 215 x 125 and 230 x 125 mm., two columns); gathered in tens. Bound in wooden boards bevelled on the inner edge, in Germany, mid 16 cent.; the spine re-covered in calf, gold-tooled, and boards covered in blue patterned paper, all perhaps in France, 18 cent.; the remains of two brass clasps

Context area

Archival history

Watermark in end-papers 'Arms of Nuremberg' (cf. Briquet 924 (1556)); on f. 1 Norwich Cathedral Priory press-mark and donation inscription 'E XXIII Radulfi de Elingham', second half thirteenth century; on f. 344 verso, crossed out, 'Liber ecclesie cath' norwicens' quemque alienaverit anathemae sit amen quod Robertus N.', 14/15 cent.; erased, partly visible under ultra-violet light, 'Communitatis Sancti Johannis baptistae [con]stat 1660'; item no. 27 in a French bookseller's printed catalogue, second half nineteenth century, cut out and pasted inside front cover together with a manuscript note, first half twentieth century, suggesting that Messrs Quaritch obtained it from this source; item no. 3417 in Messrs Quaritch catalogue 196 (1900) cut out and pasted inside back cover. When sold, held in the library of Brigadier William Greenwood Carr (1900-1982), Ditchingham Hall, Norfolk, which he inherited from his father William Carr.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Sotheby's; London; Purchased at auction, lot 68; 7 December 1982

Content and structure area

Scope and content

A Bible, from Norwich Cathedral Priory, the Books in the usual order of thirteenth-century Bibles (see N. R. Ker and A. J. Piper, Medieval manuscripts in British libraries (Oxford, 1969- ), I, 96-7) except that it lacks the Prayer of Manasses and includes the Prayer of Solomon after Ecclesiasticus. The prologues are the standard set with some omissions and divergencies. Written in Italy by one scribe. The running-titles and chapter numbers in alternate red and blue and the small chapter initials in red and blue were executed in Italy; the large initials in divided red and blue at the beginning of the General Prologue and each Book are the work of an English illuminator. On f. 344 verso there is a list of the names of ten magistri, six of whom are known to have been in Oxford at the beginning of the fourteenth century. Substantial glossing by English hands of the thirteenth-fifteenth centuries.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Access to the original manuscript by authorised permission only.

Conditions governing reproduction

Usual copyright laws apply.

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes


Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

The contents of NLW MSS 21701-22852 are indexed in greater detail in Handlist of Manuscripts in the National Library of Wales, vol. 8 (Aberystwyth, 1999).

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Related descriptions

Publication note

Manuscript cited in H. C. Beeching and M. R. James, 'The library of the cathedral church of Norwich', Norfolk Archaeology, 19 (1915-17), 74, 102; N. R. Ker, 'Medieval manuscripts from Norwich Cathedral Priory', Transactions of the Cambridge Bibliographical Society, 1 (1949-1953), 7, 14; idem, Medieval libraries of Great Britain (London, 1964), p. 139.

Notes area


Title based on contents.


Preferred citation: NLW MS 21878E [RESTRICTED ACCESS].

Alternative identifier(s)

Virtua system control number


GEAC system control number


Access points

Subject access points

Place access points

Name access points

Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Rules and/or conventions used

This description follows NLW guidelines based on ISAD(G) 2nd ed.; AACR2; and LCSH.


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion


  • English



Accession area

Related people and organizations

Related places

Physical storage

  • Text: NLW MS 21878E [RESTRICTED ACCESS]; $z - Access to the original manuscript by authorised permission only..