TextmanuscriptTextmanuscripts - Les Enluminures

les Enluminures

Dominican Miscellany: HUGO RIPELIN ARGENTINENSIS, Compendium theologicae veritatis; FRANCESCO PETRARCH, Epistola ad Lombardum de Siricho; NICOLAUS DE LYRA, Probatio adventus Christi; ALDOBRANDINUS DE TUSCANELLA, Commentary on the Lord’s Prayer; THOMAS AQUINAS, Expositio symbolum apostolorum; Noted Sequences, Ave virgo virginum and Tibi cordis in altari; THOMAS AQUINAS, Tractatus de articulis fidei et sacramentis ecclesie, Tractatus de eternitate mundi, De quibusdam articulis ad fratrem Girardum Bisuntinum, Tractatus de decem praeceptis; Quaestiones from the Dominican General Chapter at Paris in 1279; and other short texts

In Latin, decorated manuscript on parchment with musical notation
Italy (Northern?), c. 1450-1500; c. 1280-1340

TM 665

iv (parchment, i, pastedown, now mostly removed) + 278 + i (parchment pastedown) folios on parchment, foliated in ink in Arabic numerals, 1-276 with 175 bis and 192 bis, through f. 168, very neatly in a contemporary (possibly original?) hand, and then in a later early modern hand,(collation, I. ff. 1-176v: i-ii10 iii 6+1 [one leaf, f. 27, added after 6] iv-ix10 x12 xi10 xii8 xiii-xviii10; II. ff. 177-224v: xix-xxi10 xxii10[- 7, 8, 9, following f. 212, no apparent loss of text, probably cancelled] xxiii12; III. ff. 225-250v: xxiv14 xxv12; IV. ff. 251-end: xxvi10 xxvii14 xxviii2), horizontal catchwords, center lower margins, some decoratively boxed, many quires are labeled in ink at the beginning with added capital letters, but some quires lack letters, and some letters are found on leaves that are not at the beginning of quires, so this does not appear to be a system of quire signatures, layout varies, I. ff. 1-176v: frame ruled in lead with all rules full-length, pricking in all four corners where the rules intersect, many folios also have unused prickings in the top and bottom margins for a two-column layout (justification, 110-102 x 80-72 mm.), copied by as many as four scribes, or possibly by two alternating scribes, the first scribe copied ff. 1-57v and possibly 78v-86v, in a very small upright cursive gothic noting script (influenced by humanistic scripts) in thirty long lines, red rubrics, four- to two-line red initials through f. 57v, scribe two, copied ff. 58-77v in a larger cursive gothic noting script (upright, well-spaced, but using gothic letter forms)in thirty to thirty-one long lines, no rubrics, majuscules stroked in red, red paragraph marks, with a fourth scribe (possibly the same as scribe two), copying ff. 87-176v; II. ff. 177-224v, ruled lightly in lead, probably frame ruled with all rules full-length (justification 104-102 x 72-70 mm.), copied in a small quick cursive gothic script (no loops) by two scribes in twenty-nine to twenty-seven long lines, the second scribe beginning on f. 213, two five- to three-line initials text ink, occasional red paragraph marks and red rubrics in the second scribe’s section; III. ff. 225-250v, ruled in ink with the top and bottom horizontal rules full across, full-length vertical bounding lines (justification 103 x 72-68 mm.) copied in a gothic bookhand in twenty-eight long lines, majuscules stroked in red, red and blue paragraph marks, three-line parted red and blue initial with red and blue J-initial, music on ff. 249v-250v with square notation on 4-line staves; IV. ff. 251-273, ruled in lead with the top and bottom horizontal rules full across and full-length vertical bounding lines (justification 100-95 x 75-72 mm.), copied in a southern cursive gothic bookhand with looped ascenders, majuscules stroked in red, red rubrics, two-line alternately red or blue initials with pen decoration in the contrasting color; ff. 273v-276v, later additions added in several fifteenth-century hands; ff. 32v, 33, 48, 49, 57v, ink flaking or rubbed away with partial loss of a few words, f. 208 partially detached, some soiling at the edges, but overall in very good condition. Bound in fifteenth- century calf over wooden boards, ruled in blind, with two sets of triple fillets forming a rectangular central panel filled with intersecting fillets in a lozenge pattern, spine with three raised bands now mostly bare exposing the sewing and the head and tail bands, with fragments of its original leather remaining now covered with a paper strip lettered in ink, front and back boards almost totally detached, covering on front board partly missing, two clasps now missing, holes at foot of front cover, and corresponding rectangular space carved from the inside of the board, perhaps indicating the binding formerly included a chain, remains of paper strips on inner edges of covers, added inscriptions described in provenance, below. Dimensions 137 x 95 mm.

This miscellany includes two sections copied in the fifteenth century, and two earlier sections from the late thirteenth or early fourteenth century, assembled and bound in the fifteenth century (it still preserves its fifteenth-century binding). Its contents suggest it was assembled for use in a Dominican house. Numerous individual texts included here are noteworthy including the early copies of five treatises by Thomas Aquinas, a letter by Petrarch, and two noted Dominican sequences, as well as more than eleven unidentified theological quaestiones and other texts that offer significant research potential. 


1. This manuscript includes two sections copied in the Northern Italy in the second half of the fifteenth century, and two earlier manuscript texts from c. 1280-1340, assembled together and bound in the fifteenth century (still preserved in this fifteenth-century binding). The contents (including numerous texts by Thomas Aquinas, the quaestiones from the Dominican General Chapter, and the two Dominican Sequences) overwhelmingly suggests this was made for Dominican Use, although it was in a Franciscan convent by the seventeenth or eighteenth century (see below), and it does include texts by Franciscan authors. Its contents would all have been valuable to well-educated Dominicans who took their pastoral responsibilities seriously, balancing texts explaining basic theology (Hugh Ripelin’s Compendium, and the texts on the Creed, Sacraments, and Ten Commandments by Thomas Aquinas, for example), with numerous texts reflecting scholarly debates on theological topics.

The longest section of the manuscript, ff. 1-176v, with Hugh Ripelin, Compendiae theologicae veritatis, followed by a letter by Petrarch, and other short texts, is contemporary with the binding. The evidence of the script suggests these texts were copied in Italy, and most likely in northern Italy, in the second half of the fifteenth century. It is followed on ff. 177-224v by another section, contemporary with the first section, copied by two scribes, one of whom signs his name, brother John, “dominus frater iohannes”, on f. 207v at the end of Nicholas of Lyra’s polemical treatise, Probatio adventus christi. The third section on ff. 225-250v with Thomas Aquinas’ commentary on the Creed and two Dominican sequences with musical notation is earlier, probably from the first half of the fourteenth century or late thirteenth century. The final section, ff. 251-273, although clearly of independent origin, also probably dates from the late thirteenth or first half of the fourteenth century. Fifteenth-century scribes (contemporary with the binding and the first sections of the manuscript), added a number of less formal short texts on the blank leaves at the end of this section, ff. 273v-276v. 

2. The manuscript includes evidence of use, ranging from short marginal notes to extensive glosses; numerous readers’ notes were added to Hugh Ripelin’s Compendium, see for example ff. 33 (with correction in red), 98rv (recording biblical citations in the margins), 100v (long note in the lower margin), 114, 117v (extensive marginal gloss), and 155v-156; other texts include occasional notes, see ff. 213, 219v, and 225 (mostly erased). The noted sequences on ff. 249v-250v include evidence of performance, since a later hand added vertical lines between phrases of the melody to clarify which notes were to be sung with which words.

3. Inside back cover, list of contents, in a small fifteenth-century (?) cursive bookhand.

4. Inside back cover, a later shelf mark: “Ca[r?]: 276. Quint: 27.”

5. Later ex libris, probably seventeenth- or eighteenth-century, front flyleaf, f. ii, “[Per]tinet ad Conventus Scti Francisci Capesetrani”, presumably the house of Observant Franciscan friars founded in Capestrano in the province of L’Aquila in central Italy at the urging of St. John of Capestrano who was preaching there in 1447; founded in 1449 or 1450 (Moorman, 1983, p. 107). The extract from the papal letter on f. 274v, dated 1476 with a heading (probably added later) suggesting it is connected with Capestrano, needs further study, to determine whether the manuscript might have been at Capestrano earlier, despite the strong Dominican connections suggested by its contents.

6. Added title on spine (paper strip added later, reinforcing spine, extending partially onto front and back covers, now mostly gone), lettered, “[compen]dium theologicae veritatis”; back cover, added later in ink, “10[9?] Compendium teo[logica]”, below, “Lu<?>n .. FF”, front cover, in ink, roman numeral, “VI.”

7. Inside front cover, modern shelf mark on paper label, “Aa.III/106.”

8. Partial typed (mimeographed) description glued to front flyleaf, f. ii.


I. ff. 1-176v:

ff. 1-168v; ff. 1-3v, Incipit tabula generalis super compendium theologice ueritatis. Capitula primi libri, incipit, “Quod deus est [added: 4]. Quod unus deus est [added: 4] ...”, … Capitula septimi libri, incipit, De purgatorio [added: 153] … De enumeratione celestium gaudiorum [added: 167]” [ends mid col. b; remainder blank; f. 3v, blank, with added Creed, incipit, “Firmiter credimur et confitemur quod vnus solus est uerus deus eternus inmensus et incomutabilis …”];

Table of chapters with added, but early, references to folio numbers.

f. 4, Incipit prologus super compendium theologice ueritatis  [Prologue] incipit, “Veritatis theologice sublimitas cum sit superni …”, Explicit prologus;

ff. 4-27 [Book one] Incipit primus liber, Quod deus est, incipit, “Deum esse multis modis … in gloriam introducit” Explicit liber primus [f. 27v, blank];

ff. 28-57v, [Book two] Incipit secundus liber. De ipsa rerum creatione; incipit, “Summe bonitatis triplex … conculcatio principii temptationum”, Explicit secundus liber;

ff. 58-81v, [Book three], Incipit liber tertius de corruptela peccati. Et primo de malo in generale, incipit, “Malum multiplex est videlicet culpe pene et dampni … admonitibus non acquiescere”, Explicit liber tertius;

ff. 81v-100v, [Book four] Incipit liber quartus de incarnatione christi c. i, incipit, “Sicut deus est rerum principium … qui se humiliat exaltabitur”, Explicit liber quartus;

ff. 100v-130, [Book five] Incipit liber quintus de sanctificatione gratiarum de virtutibus et origine gratie, incipit, “Quemadmodum deus de celis non descendit … faceret peccaret mortaliter”, Explicit liber quintus;

ff. 130v-153, [Book six] Incipit liber sextus de virtute sacramentorum. De medicina sacramentorum, c. i, incipit, “Celestis medicus humani … iuncta retractant”, Explicit liber sextus;

ff. 153-168v, [Book seven] Incipit liber vii et primo de finali iudicio mundi c. i, incipit, “Finale iudicium mundi quedam sunt … quisque beatus secundum merita recipiet sine fine. Amen”; Explicit liber compendia theologice ueritatis. Dapna fleo rerum. Plus fleo dapna dierum. Quisque rebus potest sucurre nemo diebus;

Hugo Ripelin Argentinensis, Compendium theologicae veritatis (“Compendium of Theological Truth”) has been called the most widely-read theological work in the late Middle Ages, and it survives in at least eight hundred manuscripts (Kaeppeli, 1970-1993, vol. 2, no. 1982, pp. 261-269, Bloomfield, 1979, no. 6399, pp. 550-3, and Steer, 1981, pp. 47-146, listing 469 manuscripts of Germanic origin). It was also translated into the vernacular during the Middle Ages, and circulated in Old French and German. There is no modern critical edition, but it was printed among the works of Albertus Magnus by Borgnet (1895), and Bonaventure by Peltier (1866); there is an important modern study of its author, contents and reception in Germany in both Latin and German (Steer, 1981). 

It was printed fourteen times before 1500 under the name of Albertus Magnus, the first edition in Nuremberg by Johann Sensenschmidt, c. 1470-72 (Goff A-229; GW 596; Hain, 432; a list of incunable editions is found in Steer, 1981, pp. 167-168). Hugh Ripelin’s name did not appear in the printed editions, and the Compendium theologicae veritatis was erroneously attributed to many other scholars, most often Albertus Magnus, but also the Dominicans Thomas Aquinas, and Ulrich of Strasbourg, or even the great Franciscan theologian, St. Bonaventure. Attribution to Hugh Ripelin, however, is accepted by modern scholars, and is confirmed by a Dominican Chronicle (the Annals of Colmar).

Hugo Ripelin Argentinensis, that is, of Strasbourg (born c. 1200-1210; died, c. 1268) was one of the earliest Dominicans from Alsace. He entered the Dominican convent in Strasbourg and became prior there in 1232, before moving to Zurich where he served as sub-prior. By 1261, he was again in Strasbourg, serving as prior of the Dominican convent where he lived until his death. The Compendium theologicae veritatis (“Compendium of Theological Truth”) was a late work, written c. 1260-1268. It was destined to become one of the most widely-used manuals of scholastic theology in the later Middle Ages, serving as a school text for more than 400 years, and influencing numerous other texts on preaching and pastoral theology. Major theological themes are treated in a clear and concise manner in seven books that discuss the Creation, the Fall, the Incarnation, Grace, the Sacraments, and the Last Four Things. The influence of St. Bonaventure’s Breviloquium is apparent, and Hugh Ripelin also cites Hugh of Saint-Victor, Peter Lombard, and Albertus Magnus.

On the verses on the passing of time used here by the scribe as a colophon (Dapna fleo rerum. Plus fleo dapna dierum. Quisque rebus potest sucurre nemo diebus), roughly translated as, “I weep for the loss of things, but more I weep for the loss of days. For any man can save his things, but none win back lost days”, see Kristeller, 1993, p. 469, where this phrase in a thirteenth-century collection of model letters by a Bolognese notary, and Walther, 1969, no. 4042; variants of this verse are found on medieval sundials in northern Italy, and it was adopted by Cotton Mather in the seventeenth century as his motto.

ff. 168v-169v, incipit, “Quid mihi de hac uita quam degimus uideatur interrogas neque inmerito multe enim … vale inter coles euganeos”, Explicit francisci poetus laureati diffinitio vite ad lombardum amicum suum, Amen;

Francesco Petrarca. Rerum senilium libri, letter XI.11, Ad Lombardum de Siricho; Petrarch, Opera (1554), 779; English translation in Bernardo, et al., 2005. Francesco Petrarch (1304-1374), the Italian poet, scholar, and early humanist, was a prodigious writer of letters from his student days until the last month of his life. As the title indicates, his “Letters of Old Age”, are letters from his later years. This letter, written on November 29, 1370, is a relentless tirade on the wretchedness of earthly life, which Petrarch observed, was “a painstaking preparation for the worms”, concluding “There is only one good think in all the bad: unless one deserts the right path, it is the way to a good eternal life” – sentiments that doubtless appealed to the Dominican friars who used this manuscript.

ff. 170- 171v, incipit, “Nolite diligere mundum, etc. Jo. 2[:15]. Ad mundi contemptu christus inducit suos sequaces. Sed cur yesus christus volt se abnegare et mundum sic dispicere …”;

Unidentified text, not included in In principio (Online resources); this discussion on the contempt of worldly things continues the themes presented in Petrarch’s letter.

ff. 171v- 175bis v, incipit, “Missus est Angelus Gabriel etc. luc. [1:26]. Ubi sciendum est quod in omni legacione <artem?> dicitur, 1. Domine mittentis auctoritas, 2. Missus venientis fidelitas, 3.  Per suscipientes nobilitas …” [ends mid f. 175bis v; remainder and ff. 176rv, blank];

Unidentified text (a commentary?); not in In principio (Online resources).

II. ff. 177-224v:
ff. 177-207v, Incipit questio contra iudeorum edita per Reuerendum patrum et magistrum in sacra theologia fratrem Nicolaum de Lira ordinis minorum in qua probatur per scripturam a iudeis receptam …, incipit, “Utrum per scripturas a iudeis receptas possit probari misterium Christi … et plures iam baptizati ad vomitum revertuntur”, Terminat hic opus contra perfidiam factam hebraycam uolens quisque militare. Faciliter potest inuentus dogmate istos. Domine frater iohannes cum legeris in hoc opere memore scriptoris in uestris orationibus;

Nicholas of Lyra, Probatio adventus christi (The Proof of the Coming of Christ); Stegmüller, 1976-1980, no. 5982, listing around twenty-five manuscripts; this work most likely originated as a question from a quodlibetal disputation in Paris c. 1309, and it has traditionally been said to exist in two recensions (see also Stegmüller, no. 5981, listing twenty-nine manuscripts); if this is accepted, the text in this manuscript is the second, revised version, dating from 1331-34; see also Reinhardt, 1987, pp. 321-58, especially 334-36, listing eleven Spanish manuscript of the text; printed in 1494 (no date or place); Antwerp 1492; 1634; Basel 1498; 1502; 1507; Frankfurt 1602; London 1888; Lyon 1481; Nuremburg 1484; 1487; 1493; 1497; Paris s.d; Strassburg 1470; 1492; Venice 1481; 1583; 1588. 

The text circulated under a number of different titles, including the Quaestio contra Iudeorum (The Quaestio against the Jews), as here, Quodlibetum de adventu Christi, Probatio adventus christi, De Iudeorum perfidia, and so forth. There is no modern critical edition, and no modern survey of the surviving manuscripts, although it was clearly very popular, and recent scholars have suggested that it survives in eighty to one hundred manuscripts. Labrosse (1923) argued there are two recensions, as noted above (and it is listed in this way by Stegmüller); more recent scholars have suggested there is in actuality only one, since the two different “recensions” only differ in the wording of the beginning (Klepper, 1993, Duba, 2006-2007).

In it, Nicholas sets out to show “whether from writings accepted by the Jew it can be proven effectively that our Savior was both God and man”, investigating the triune nature of God, the divine and human nature of the biblical messiah, and that the Bible contained the truth of the advent of the messiah.

Nicholas of Lyra is an important figure in the history of medieval exegesis, known primarily for has great work, the literal Postills on the Bible. He probably entered the Franciscan convent at Varneuil c. 1300, and then studied theology in Paris, becoming a master of theology by 1309. He served as Prior Provincial of France (c. 1319-12) and of Burgundy (c. 1324-6). He died c. 1349. 

f. 207, Nicholaus de lira ordinis minorum magistri sacre theologie super io xi c. In xo maria queritur utrum hec fuerit illa peccatrix de qua scribitur luc iii. Que lauit lacus pedem domini …”; [ends mid f. 207, remainder blank];

Short paragraph, here attributed to Nicholas de Lyra, discussing the identity of Mary in John, chapter 11, and whether she is the same woman, identified as a sinner, who washes Jesus’ feet with her tears, drying them with her hair, in Luke 7.36-40.

ff. 208v-209v, incipit, “Circa etiam queruntur plura scilicet utrum ad hoc quod uoluntas sit bona …; Responsio quod sic. Tunc enim conscienciam est recta quando est recto secundum legem divinam … Ve qui sapientes estis in oculis vestris. Hoc Gual. et refert Astexanus in summa sua li. 2. c. 3. ar. 2”;

Theological quaestio discussing the relationship between good will and divine law; the Summa cited at the conclusion must be the Summa de casibus conscientiae by Astesanus ab Asti (d. c. 1330), a Franciscan theologian and canonist. He probably was born in Asti, but not much is known about his life or career. His best known work is the Summa de casibus conscientiae of 1317, also known as the Summa Astesani, an abbreviation of the Summa quaestionum sacrae scripturae de omni materia (which has not survived). The identity of Walther (here “Gual.”) needs further investigation, although one possibility is Galterus Brugensis (i.e. Gautier de Bruges, or Walther of Bruges) (d. 1307), a disciple of Bonaventure, who taught at Paris as Magister regens between 1267-69, and later became bishop of Poitiers. He was the author of numerous theological texts. Careful study of the text seems very likely to be rewarding.

ff. 210-211v, De salomon, incipit, “Salomon fuit amabilis domino etc. 2 R. 17. Cui bis deus apparuit 3 R. 3 c et paralip. 2c. Amor tamem mulierum a domino dicessit 3 R ii c ...”;

The text begins with a short collection of biblical and patristic writings on Solomon, citing Ambrose, Peter Lombard, Hugh of St. Victor’s commentary on Ecclesiasticus, Jerome and others, and continuing with thoughts on Solomon.

f. 211v, incipit, “Adam primus culpam statim de paradiso …” [ends mid f. 211v; remainder and ff. 212, blank];

f. 212v, incipit, “Audiuimus quod quidam inter vos diabolum fraudem …”;

Short exemplum on the devil, and a note on Exodus chapter 3.

ff. 213-224, incipit, “Pater noster etc. Circa patrum noster quod non est conveniens orari quia secundum damascenum oratio est petitio decentium a deo … sigillo robarantur etc. Rogemus dominum ihesum christum, etc;”

Commentary on the Lord’s Prayer by Aldobrandinus de Tuscanella (fl. 1287-1314; d. after 1293), an Italian Dominican Friar, who was a lector at Pisa, Pistoia, Siena, and possibly Viterbo, and the author of sermons and a number of treatises; Kaeppeli, 1970-1993, volume 1, pp. 44-45, no. 136, lists fifteen manuscripts of the text, but no printed editions.

f. 224, incipit, “Excipe cantantem diuinis uirgo sub alie/ Hunc rege qui culpam nate die quia gemit/ Tu pie mortalibus miseris succurrere gnosti … Virginis obtutus saluos nullo”; [f. 224v, blank];

Unidentified verses in honor of the Virgin, 12-lines, added at the end of the previous text in space left blank by the original scribe.

III. ff. 225-249v:
ff. 225-249, incipit, “Credo in unum deum, Primum quod est neccessarium christiano … in secula seculorum, Amen;

Thomas Aquinas, Expositio in symbolum apostolorum (Commentary on the Apostle’s Creed); ed. by R. M. Spiazzi, 1954; the text will be edited in volume 44 of the new edition by the Leonine Commission (in preparation).

Thomas’ commentary on the Creed was one of his last works, possibly given as a homily during Lent in 1473, and transcribed by Thomas’ secretary, Reginald of Piperno.

f. 249, incipit, “Septem articuli fidei Christiane qui pertinent ad diuinitatem sic distinguntur ut unus sit articulus de diuinis essentie …”;

Paragraph on the seven articles of the Christian faith.

ff. 249v-250, incipit, “Aue uirgo uirginum, aue lumen luminum. Aue stella preuia. Mediatrix hominum …”;

Dominican sequence, noted (square notation on a four-line staff); Dreves, Analecta hymnica, vol. 54, no. 285; Dominican thirteenth-century sequences and their place in the Domincan liturgy and thought are discussed in Fassler, 2004, pp. 263-278. This sequence, certainly part of the Dominican sequence repertory, was also probably composed by a Dominican (see Fassler, p. 247, no. 22).

f. 250rv, incipit, “Tibi cordis in altari, decet preces inmolari …”;

Dominican sequence, noted (square notation on a four-line staff), written by a thirteenth-century Dominican author (Fassler, 2004, p. 247, no. 20); Dreves, Analecta hymnica, vol. 54, no. 279 and Fassler, 2004, pp. 271-272, who notes, “Here Mary is challenged by the poet not to forget, in her uniqueness and special glory, from whence she came, and for whom …. The friars offer their prayers to Mary on the altar of the heart, and she is to take them up and offer them for the unworthy ones whom it is her job as mediatrix to represent.”

IV. ff. 251-276v:
ff. 251-256v, incipit, Incipit tractatus de articulis fidei et ecclesie sacramentis per Fratrem Thomas de Aquino, “Postulat a me vestro dilectio ut de articulis fidei… et sub alio eius nativitatem”, Explicit de articulis; f. 254, Incipit de sacramentis ecclesiae, incipit, “Nunc restat considerandum de ecclesie sacramentis … ad quam gloriam nos perducat etc.”, Explicit de articulis fidei ac ecclesie sacramentis, Deo gratias;

Thomas Aquinas. Tractatus de Articulis Fidei et sacramentis ecclesie; Leonine edition, v. 42 (1979), pp. 207-257, listing 274 manuscripts, with three in the United States (no. 77, Harvard, fMS lat 246; no. 156, Union Theological, GQ 73 A66; and no. 157, Plimpton, MS 59). An English translation is found in Collins, 1939, reprint 1953, pp. 16-53.

This text was written at the request of Leonard, archbishop of Palermo from 1261-1270, and must date from sometime during this period. Thomas discusses each of the articles of faith and the sacraments in turn, giving a brief explanation, followed by a discussion of erroneous opinions that can be refuted by Scripture.

ff. 257-258v, Incipit tractatus de eternitate mundi editus a fratris Thomas de Aquino, incipit, “Supposito secundum fidem catholicam mundum ab eterno non fuisse … debiles quod sua debilitate contraire parti videntur probabilitatem afferre”, Explicit tractatus de eternitate mundi;

Thomas Aquinas, Tractatus de aeternitate mundi or De aeternitate mundi contra murmurantes; ed. Leonine edition (1976), vol. 43, pp. 49-89, listing 86 manuscripts, only one in the US (no. 42, New York Academy of Medicine MS 6); English translations in Clark, 1972, and McInerny, 1990.

The question of whether the world was eternal was a pressing matter during Thomas Aquinas’ lifetime, when Christian theologians, including Thomas, were confronted with opinions expressed by Aristotle that directly contradicted Christian doctrine. Thomas’ solution, proposed in this brief treatise, was to state that the fact that the world was not eternal, but was created by God, did not need to be proven, but was to be accepted by faith. There is an extensive body of modern scholarship discussing the contents of this text, and debating when it may have been written, with some suggesting that it belongs to Thomas’ second period of teaching in Paris, 1268-1272 (see for example Wissinck, 1990, publishing the proceedings of a conference devoted to this text).

ff. 258v-259v, Incipit tractatus super quibusdam articulis editus a fratre Thomae de Aquino, incipit, “Karissimo sibi in Christo fratri Gerardo ysuntino [sic] ordinis fratrum praedicatorum frater Thomas de Aquino eiusdem ordinis confraterna dilectione salutem. Recepi litteras vestras quosdam articulos continentes … pro quo mihi si placet orationum suffragia impendatis. Deo gratias Amen”;

Thomas Aquinas, De quibusdam articulis ad fratrem Girardum Bisuntinum (also circulated as Responsiones ad quosdam articulos dubios; or Responsio de 6 articulis ad lectorem Bisuntinum); ed. in the Leonine edition, vol. 42 (1979), pp. 347-356, listing forty-seven manuscripts.

This short work, composed in response to a series of questions posed by Brother Gerard from Besançon, discusses five remarks made by preachers, beginning with whether the star that the Magi saw had the form of a cross, the form of a man, or a crucifix; it concludes with a question concerning confession. Thomas makes the general point that when preaching to the people frivolous details should be avoided. Its date is uncertain, although 1271 has been suggested.

ff. 259v-260, incipit, “Questiones qui fuerint ponite in capitulo generali ordinis fratrum predicatorum parisiis celebrate anno domini mcclxxix coram magistro … [naming Peter of Tarentaise, Thomas Aquinas, and others ..] … Primo questio sunt talis. Esto quod unus frater accusat alius de peccato occulto quod probari non potest … In hoc non concordant alii magistri cum fratre Thoma etc.” [ff. 260v-261, blank];

Theological Quaestiones debated at the Dominican general chapter of 1279, and mentioning Thomas Aquinas, Peter of Tarentaise, and other masters who were present. The contents of this section is of considerable interest; further research is necessary to determine whether it has been published.

ff. 262-273, incipit, “Tria sunt homini necessaria ad salutem videlicet scientia credendorum …. non desiderabis uxorem etc.” Explicit decem preceptis. Explicit tractatus decem preceptis editus a fratre Thomas de Aquino;

Thomas Aquinas, Tractatus de decem praeceptis (Treatise on the Ten Commandments), ed. in Torrell, 2000; see also Torrell, 1978 and 1985; a new edition to be included in the Leonine Edition, vol. 44 (in preparation); English translation in Collins, 1939, reprint, 1953, pp. 54-91.

The date of these homilies on the Ten Commandments is uncertain, although they originated as Italian homilies probably in c. 1268, or at the end of his life in 1273. They were collected by Peter of Andria.

ff. 273-276v [texts added in numerous fifteenth-century hands], incipit, “Legales festivitate errant vii scilicet sabbatum …”; f. 274v, an excerpt from a Papal letter dated 7 July 1446, with heading (probably added later) “Eugenius papa facti <?> de capestrano” (Capestrano is not mentioned in the text); short passage on reading the Gospels (?), prayers, and other brief paragraphs, including a citation from Marchesinus de Regio Lepidi, Mammotrectus.


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Borgnet, A., ed. B. Alberti Magni …Opera omnia, ex editione lugdunensi religiose castigate…, Paris, 1895, vol. 34, pp. 1-306.

Clark, Mary T., trans. [Aquinas]. On the Eternity of the World against the Grumblers in An Aquinas Reader, Garden City, NY, Image Books, 1972, 178–85.

Collins, J. B. Catechetical Instructions of St. Thomas, New York, Wagner 1939; repr. 1953.

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Duba, William O. “Continental Franciscan Quodlibeta after Scotus”, in Theological Quodlibeta in the Middle Ages. Volume 2, The Fourteenth Century, ed. Christopher Schabel, Brill’s Companion to the Christian Tradition 1.7, Leiden and Boston, 2006-2007,, pp. 569-650, especially pp. 582-583.

Fassler, Margot. “Music and the Miraculous: Mary in the Mid-Thirteenth-Century Dominican

Sequence Repertory”, in Aux Origines de la Liturgie Dominicaine: Le Manuscrit Santa Sabina XIV L 1, eds. Leonard E. Boyle and Pierre-Marie Gy, Paris and Rome, 2004, pp. 229-278.

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Klepper, D. C. “The Dating of Nicholas of Lyra’s Quaestio de Adventu Christi”, Archivum Franciscanum Historicum 86 (1993), pp. 297-312.

Kristeller, P. O. “Matteo de’ Libri, Bolognese Notary of the Thirteenth Century and His Artes Dictaminis”, in Studies in Renaissance Thoughts and Letters, Rome, 1993, vol. 3, pp. 443-486.

Labrosse, H. “Oeuvres de Nicolas de Lyre”, Etudes Franciscaines 19 (1908), pp. 41-52, 153-75; 368-79, and 35 (1923), pp. 170-87, 400-31, at pp. 177-183.

Longpré, E. “Le quodlibet de Nicolas de Lyre”, Archivum franciscanum historicum 23 (1930), pp. 42-56.

McInerny, Ralph, trans. [Aquinas]. On the Eternity of the World against Murmurers, in A First Glance at St. Thomas Aquinas: A Handbook for Peeping Thomists, Notre Dame, Indiana, University of Notre Dame Press, 1990, pp. 49–56.

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Thomas Aquinas. De aeternitate mundi, ed. in Opera omnia iussu Leonis XIII P. M. edita, vol. 43, Rome, Editori di San Tommaso, Roma, 1976, pp. 49-89.

Thomas Aquinas. De articulis Fidei et Ecclesiae sacramentis ad archiepiscopum Panormitanum, ed. in Opera omnia iussu Leonis XIII P. M. edita, vol. 42, Rome Editori di San Tommaso, 1979, pp. 207-257.

Thomas Aquinas. Responsio ad lectorem Bisuntinum de 6 articulis, ed. in Opera omnia iussu Leonis XIII P. M. edita, vol. 42, Rome, Editori di San Tommaso, 1979, pp. 347-356.

Thomas Aquinas. In Symbolum Apostolorum, scilicet “Credo in Deum” expositio, ed. R. M. Spiazzi in Opuscula theologica, vol. 2, Taurin and Rome, Marietti, 1953, pp. 191-217.

Stegmüller, F. Repertorium biblicum medii aevi, Madrid, 1950-1961, and Supplement, with N. Reinhardt, Madrid, 1976-1980.

Steer, Georg. Hugo Ripelin von Strassburg: zur Rezeptions, und Wirkungsgeschichte des Compendium theologicae veritatis im deutschen Spätmittelalter, Tübingen, M. Niemeyer, 1981.

Torrell, J. P. “Les Collationes in decem praeceptis de saint Thomas d’Aquin. Édition critique avec introduction et notes”, Revue des Sciences Philosophiques et Théologiques 69 (1985), pp. 5-40, 227-263.

Torrell, J. P. Les “Collationes in decem praeceptis” de saint Thomas d’Aquin. Édition critique avec introduction et notes, Bibliothèque Thomiste 52, Paris, J. Vrin, 2000, pp. 65-117.

Torrell, J. P. “Deux remaniements anonymes des Collationes in X preceptis...”, Mediaeval Studies 40 (1978), pp. 1-29.

Torrell, Jean-Pierre. Saint Thomas Aquinas.  Volume I. The Person and His Work, trans. Robert Royal, Washington, D. C., Catholic University of America Press, 1996.

Walther, Hans. Initia carmina ac versuum medii aevi posterioris latinorum. Göttingen, 1959; 2nd ed. 1969.

Wissink, J. B. M. The Eternity of the World in the Thought of Thomas Aquinas and His Contemporaries, Leiden and New York, E. J. Brill, 1990.

Online resources

Steer, Georg. “Hugo von Straßburg”, in Neue Deutsche Biographie 10 (1974), p. 24 http://www.deutsche-biographie.de/pnd11855462X.html

Schroeder, H.J., “Hugh of Strasburg”, in The Catholic Encyclopedia, New York, Robert Appleton Company, 1910

In Principio, Incipit index of Latin texts (Database available by subscription)

Maarten van der Heijden and Bert Roest, “Franciscan Authors, 13th-18th century: A Catalogue in Progress”

Thomas Aquinas in English: A Bibliography


Thomas Aquinas Biography (Thomas Aquinas Institute, Utrecht)

McInerny, Ralph and O’Callaghan, John, “Saint Thomas Aquinas”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2010 Edition), Edward N. Zalta, ed. http://plato.stanford.edu/archives/win2010/entries/aquinas/

Corpus Thomisticum (works in Latin, with concordance, bibliography, etc.)

Works of Thomas Aquinas in English (Kenney) many with parallel texts in Latin

Latin text of Thomas Aquinas. Expositio in symbolum apostolorum

Latin text of Thomas Aquinas. De articulis fidei et ecclesiae sacramentis ad archiepiscopum Panormitanum

Latin text of De aeternitate mundi (from the 1972 Leonine edition)
English translation, Miller, Robert T., trans. On the Eternity of the World www.fordham.edu/halsall/basis/aquinas-eternity.html, dhspriory.org/thomas/DeEternitateMundi.htm, and www.catholicprimer.org/aquinas/de_aeternitate_mundi.pdf.

Latin text of Thomas Aquinas. Responsio de 6 articulis ad lectorem Bisuntinum

Latin text of Thomas Aquinas. De decem praeceptis

English Translations of Thomas Aquinas Catechetical Texts; J.B. Collins, Catechetical Instructions of St. Thomas, New York, Wagner 1939; repr. 1953