Manuscript: O.2.14
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Trinity College Library, O.2.14
(Bestiaire of Guillaume le Clerc)

Produced: England, 13th & 14th century

Language: French/Latin

Author: Guillaume le Clerc

Media: Vellum

Folios: 107  Height: 22.2 cm   Width: 15.6 cm

Manuscript type: Miscellany

Location: Trinity College Library (University of Cambridge), Cambridge, England, United Kingdom

Family: n/a


Source: Trinity College Library O.2.14 | Copyright 2006 Copyright 2006 Trinity College Library | Folio 44r


The illustrated Bestiaire of Guillaume le Clerc is on folios 32v-61v.

"3. f.32b Hic incipit prologus super bestiarium Willelmi normanni qui fecit hunc librum translatum a latino in romanum tempore regis Iohannis quando anglia erat interdicta (Hist. Litt. xvi.220) Qe n totes oueraignes en deit / estre loez qui que il seit / Liure de bone comentaille / Ki aura bone definaille. It ends on f.66(67)b: end of col.1: Guillame qui cest liure fist / En la definaille tant dist / De sire Raol sun seignor / Explicit Bestiarius. But col.2 continues: Pur qui il fu en cest labor etc. Ending: Poisse monter a eel ior / que li iuste e li peccheor / Deuant le iuge trembleront / E lor iugement atendront.

The Bestiary is illustrated with miniatures of fair execution.

1. f.33. Mailed man, with shield, pierces a lion in the neck. Green ground. 2. f.34. Man in tunic pierces neck of a two-horned aptalops. Blue ground. 3. f.35. A man and woman standing up to their middles in water, their upper parts surrounded by flames, holding each other's hands. de dous peres que sunt cumme mathle et femele.

4. A four-winged fish (serre de la mer) standing vertically in water. 5. Two kaladres, one flying, one standing on the bed of a sick person. The one flying has its beak to the eye of the patient. Blue ground. 6. A Pelican vulning herself: two nestlings; red ground. 7. The Fresei. A bird standing on a red slope: green ground. 8. f.39. The Fenis. A horned and hoofed bird bending over a fire on R. Red ground. 9. The Hupe. Two young hoopoes pecking an old one. 10. f.40. Treis manere de formiz. Corn (or other plants) growing: no ants visible. 11. f.41. The Sereine, with bird's feet and fish's tail, holds a serpent. Ship, with three men; one jumping out is held back by others. 12. f.42. The Hericun. One above, one below, the latter on its back. Green ground with foliage. 13. Ybix. A hoofed bird devouring something in the water. 14. f.43. Renard lo cvpil on his back pretending to be dead: three birds over him. Red ground. 15. f.44. Unicorn with head laid on a maid's lap, pierced by a hunter. 15. f.45. Bievre: large, biting off his glands. Two hunters with horn and hound. 16. f.46. Hiaine devours a corpse in a coffin. 17. f.46. Cocodrille, like a cow, with a band round its middle: a green snake's head (that of the ichneumon) emerges at its tail: the tail is seen in the crocodile's mouth. 18. f.47. Goats on each side of a tree. 19. f.48. Asne sauvage. Three of them attacking another. 20. f.49. Singe: a white monkey carrying two green ones. 21. Un oisel with webbed feet: two nestlings in a red nest. 22. f.50. Pantere as a winged dragon on a mound: all kinds of beasts round it, attracted by its perfume: this picture extends across both columns. Blue ground. 23. f.52. Balaine: a huge head and mouth: ship with two men above. 24. Perdiz: six partridges about a tree. 25. f.53. Belette. Like a dragon in form. 26. Ostrice. Looks up at the sun: two nestlings on L. 27. Turtle-doves: six, in a tree. 28. f.56. Cerf: opposite to it, a snake, upright. 29. f.57. Salemandre, with snake in mouth. 30. Colums. Doves fall from tree into mouth of dragon. 31. f.60. Across the page. Elephant, with castle on back and large eye, pursues a green winged dragon. 32. f.61. Mandragore: represented as a man and woman standing in earth or water, a tree between them. 33. Diamant. Christ with book in the midst of six Apostles." - The Western Manuscripts in the Library of Trinity College, Cambridge: a Descriptive Catalogue (Cambridge, 1900-04) James

Additional description

Editions and Facsimiles

Digital facsimiles: Trinity College Library (partial; marred by digital watermark)


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