Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Clm 6908
(Liber de natura rerum / Fürstenfelder Physiologus)


Produced: 14th century
Current Location: Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Munich, Germany
Manuscript Type: Miscellany
Physiologus Version: Dicta Chrysostomi
Language: Latin
Folios: 85
Author: Thomas of Cantimpré
Illustrated: Yes
Media: Parchment
Folio 78r


Tractatus de naturis animalium in XX libros divisus, quorum tres extremi desunt · Physiologus cum figuris pictis

Part 1: The Tractatus de naturis animalium (treatise on the nature of animals - folio 1v-77v) is divided into 20 books, of which the last three are missing (based on the list in the table of contents). The author of the text is not stated; it appears to be based on the Liber de natura rerum of Thomas of Cantimpré, with possibly some text from Etymologies or Isidore of Seville. The Tractus is not illustrated. Though the title of the work only specifies animals, there are books on several other subjects, making this a true encyclopedia. The order of the books closely matches that in Thomas's encyclopedia (starting with the book on quadrupeds), with some books omitted and a few added. It contains books on:

  1. Beasts (folio 1v-12v)
  2. Birds (folio 12v-22v)
  3. Marine monsters (folio 22v-24v)
  4. Fish (folio 24v-27v)
  5. Serpents (folio 27v-32r)
  6. Worms (folio 32r-36r)
  7. Trees (folio 36r-41v)
  8. Aromatic trees (folio 41v-45r)
  9. Plants (folio 45r-49v)
  10. Stones (folio 49v-58r)
  11. Metals (folio 58r-59v)
  12. Regions of the air (folio 59v-61r)
  13. Motions of the spheres (folio 61r)
  14. Planets (folio 61r-66r)
  15. Four elements (folio 66r-68r)
  16. Collection of marvels (folio 68r-70r)
  17. Parts of the human body (folio 71r-77v)

Folio 1r contains a description of the boa serpent, apparently unconnected to the other two texts.

Part 2: The Dicta Chrysostomi version of the Physiologus of the Physiologus (starting folio 78r with the lion, ending folio 85v with the cerastes). The Physiologus is illustrated with fairly crude colored drawings, which clearly demonstrate the primary attributes of the beast. Each beast has a rubric naming it and an illustration.

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Bayerische Staatsbibliothek