}}296 ff. (earlier MS on ff. 33-106)

Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, MS lat. 4126 Poppleton manuscript

  • Latin
  • s. xiiiex + s. xiv3/4
  • composite manuscript
  • English manuscripts
lat. 4126
Colbert 3120
olim Colbert 3120.
Poppleton manuscript
Provenance and related aspects
s. xiiiex + s. xiv3/4
According to Friedman (1995), the MS may have been compiled, and much of it written, “after 1357, but probably before 1375” and integrates (recycles) an older manuscript of the late 13th century containing Gerald of Wales’s Topographia Hiberniae.
Origin, provenance
Origin: England, north-eastEngland, north-east

No description available

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Hulne, Carmelite priory
Hulne, Carmelite priory
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York, Augustinian priory
York, Augustinian priory
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York, Carmelite prioryYork, Carmelite priory

No description available

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ass. with Robert of PoppletonRobert of Poppleton
(fl. 14th century)
Carmelite friar, who had been a brother of the priory at York and later became prior of the Carmelite friary at Hulne, near Alnwick (Northumberland). He oversaw and probably contributed to the compilation of BNF lat. 4126, the so-called Poppleton manuscript.
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Robert of Poppleton, Carmelite friar and previously a priest at York, seems to have been attached to the Carmelite friary at Hulne when the manuscript was being compiled, and also to have intended its production for that house. However, it is thought that much of the work was done in York using the library resources at the Augustinian priory and that compilation took place there (Hudson) or at the Carmelite house in York (Friedman). F. 211v makes an explicit reference to the work’s compilation at York and Friedman notes that twelve texts in the manuscript can be identified with items listed in the library catalogue of the Augustinian convent. An alternative, not necessarily mutually exclusive possibility that has been suggested is that Poppleton visited the Abbey of St Mary’s in York, since it was there in the 16th century that John Leland found a copy of the Topographia Hiberniae.
Hands, scribes
Hands indexed:
Hand (ff. 33–106) Hand of the older core of the MS.
Hand (Poppleton?)

The “compiler, overseer, partly the scribe, and possibly the decorator” (Friedman) of the compilation, whose name is frequently invoked in prayers/colophon in the MS. It is not clear if Poppleton lived to see the completion of his manuscript. A note written in his memory appears on f. 155v.

Robert of PoppletonRobert of Poppleton
(fl. 14th century)
Carmelite friar, who had been a brother of the priory at York and later became prior of the Carmelite friary at Hulne, near Alnwick (Northumberland). He oversaw and probably contributed to the compilation of BNF lat. 4126, the so-called Poppleton manuscript.
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Hand (ff. 106v-133va?)
Hand (ff. 246-282)

“secretary hand” (Friedman).

Hand (ff. 282-296)

Described by Friedman as Poppleton’s “secretary, rubricator and amuensis”, who added the prayer on f. 11 and the longer explicit/prayer on f. 252r, and who also wrote Poppleton’s name in Cambridge, Trin. Coll., MS R 5.42. He is noted for his distinctive p (“with a very spiky Insular style of descender that curves forward at the tip”) and d (“whose stem ... goes leftward slightly and then sharply curves back on itself to the right”).

Codicological information
UnitCodicological unit. Indicates whether the entry describes a single leaf, a distinct or composite manuscript, etc.
composite manuscript
296 ff. (earlier MS on ff. 33-106)
Table of contents

Links to texts use a standardised title for the catalogue and so may or may not reflect what is in the manuscript itself, hence the square brackets. Their appearance comes in three basic varieties, which are signalled through colour coding and the use of icons, , and :

  1. - If a catalogue entry is both available and accessible, a direct link will be made. Such links are blue-ish green and marked by a bookmark icon.
  2. - When a catalogue entry does not exist yet, a desert brown link with a different icon will take you to a page on which relevant information is aggregated, such as relevant publications and other manuscript witnesses if available.
  3. - When a text has been ‘captured’, that is, a catalogue entry exists but is still awaiting publication, the same behaviour applies and a crossed eye icon is added.

The above method of differentiating between links has not been applied yet to texts or citations from texts which are included in the context of other texts, commonly verses.


While it is not a reality yet, CODECS seeks consistency in formatting references to locations of texts and other items of interest in manuscripts. Our preferences may be best explained with some examples:

  • f. 23ra.34: meaning folio 23 recto, first column, line 34
  • f. 96vb.m: meaning folio 96, verso, second column, middle of the page (s = top, m = middle, i = bottom)
    • Note that marg. = marginalia, while m = middle.
  • p. 67b.23: meaning page 67, second column, line 23
The list below has been collated from the table of contents, if available on this page,Progress in this area is being made piecemeal. Full and partial tables of contents are available for a small number of manuscripts. and incoming annotations for individual texts (again, if available).Whenever catalogue entries about texts are annotated with information about particular manuscript witnesses, these manuscripts can be queried for the texts that are linked to them.


Primary sources This section typically includes references to diplomatic editions, facsimiles and photographic reproductions, notably digital image archives, of at least a major portion of the manuscript. For editions of individual texts, see their separate entries.

[dig. img.] Gallica: bibliothèque numérique, Online: Bibliothèque nationale de France, ...–present. URL: <https://gallica.bnf.fr>.
Greyscale images. direct link
[dipl. ed.] Anderson, Marjorie Ogilvie, Kings and kingship in early Scotland, 1st ed., Edinburgh: Scottish Academic Press, 1973.
235–260 An edition of the ‘Scottish section’.

Secondary sources (select)

Gallica: bibliothèque numérique, Online: Bibliothèque nationale de France, ...–present. URL: <https://gallica.bnf.fr>.
Hudson, Benjamin T., “‘The Scottish Chronicle’”, The Scottish Historical Review 77:2 (October, 1998): 129–161.
Friedman, John Block, Northern English books, owners, and makers in the late Middle Ages, Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 1995.  
Contents: 1. Northern book-owning men and women: evidence from wills and extant manuscripts -- 2. Northern professional scribes and scribe families -- 3. Color and the archaizing style -- 4. The interlace and mask medallion style -- 5. ‘Hermits painted at the front’: images of popular piety in the north -- 6. Three northern magnates as book patrons: John Newton, Thomas Langley, Thomas Rotherham, and their manuscripts -- App. A. The Pigment folium --App. B. A handlist of extant northern manuscripts -- App. C. Book ownership in the north: a census from wills.
Crick, Julia C., The Historia Regum Britannie of Geoffrey of Monmouth, vol. 3: A summary catalogue of the manuscripts, Cambridge, Woodbridge, Suffolk: D. S. Brewer, 1989.
256–261 Not seen.
Cowan, Edward J., “The Scottish chronicle in the Poppleton manuscript”, The Innes Review 32:1 (Spring, 1981): 3–21.
Anderson, Marjorie Ogilvie, “The Scottish materials in the Paris manuscript, Bib. nat., latin 4126”, The Scottish Historical Review 28:1 (April, 1949): 31–42.
Levison, Wilhelm, “Review of N. R. Ker, Medieval libraries of Great Britain, vol. 3 (1941)”, Medium Ævum 11 (1942): 111–115.
Esposito, Mario, “Notes on Latin learning and literature in mediaeval Ireland—II. Pseudopatriciana”, Hermathena 22:47 (1932): 253–271.
Esposito, Mario, “Notes on mediaeval Hiberno-Latin and Hiberno-French literature”, Hermathena 16:36 (1910): 58–72.
Catalogus codicum manuscriptorum Bibliothecae Regiae, pars tertia: codices latini [1–8822], 4 vols, Paris, 1739–1744.
Internet Archive – vol. 1: <link> Internet Archive – vol. 2: <link> Internet Archive – vol. 3: <link> Internet Archive – vol. 4: <link> Gallica – vol. 4: <link>
Vol. 3, 549–550
Pinkerton, John, An inquiry into the history of Scotland: preceding the reign of Malcolm III, or the year 1056; including the authentic history of that period, 2 vols, London: John Nichols, 1794.
HathiTrust – vol. 1: <link> Google Books – vol. 1: <link> Internet Archive – vol. 1 (orig. from Google Books): <link> HathiTrust – vol. 2: <link> Google Books – vol. 2: <link> Internet Archive – vol. 2 (orig. from Google Books): <link>
Vol. 1, 472–476, 481–487 (f. 27rb ff), (briefly, 243)

External links

Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
July 2021, last updated: November 2022