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"Annotated Copies of Rabanus Maurus's De rerum naturis"
William Schipper
English Manuscripts 1100-1700, 6, 1995

"Rabanus Maurus's encyclopedia, De rerum naturis, compiled between 842 and 847, did not circulate widely until after 1100. Aside from a two-volume set from Reichenau there is only one other copy, containing books 11 -22, dating to his own lifetime; in addition there are just three or four other copies dating to before the eleventh century. ... In this brief study I would like to examine two different manuscripts that exemplify the attention paid to this work during the two and a half centuries between 1150 and 1400. The first is a magnificently produced copy from St Albans (now BL MS Royal 12.G.xiv), containing hundreds of interlinear annotations and some striking marginal ones. ... The second manuscript, formerly in the library of the Oxford Franciscans, is Oxford, Bodleian Library Ms Laud misc 746. ... The margins of this volume abound with notes of various kinds, and in various hands. ... The Royal and Laud manuscripts are also linked in another way: the corrections and additions in the latter were taken from a manuscript whose text was closely affiliated with the former." - Schipper

Language: English

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