Einsiedeln, Stiftsbibliothek, Codex 339(1332) (pp. 139-318).
Lowe Elias Avery, Codices Latini Antiquiores. A palaeographical guide to latin manuscripts prior to the ninth century. Part VII: Switzerland, Oxford 1956 (Osnabrück 1982), p. 12.
Manuscript title: , Prooemia, de ortu et obitu patrum.
Date of origin: Saec. VIII-IX.
Support: Parchment is often dark on the hair-side.
Extent: Ninety folios paginated 139-318 (in the entire volume 162 folios, paginated 1-321 with a front fly-leaf and the last page which is pasted to the cover not numbered: pp. 1-138, grammatica, are saec. IX-X: pp. 319/320 contain an alphabet, saec. IX
Format: 117 x 90 mm
Collation: Gatherings generally of eight, apparently unsigned.
Page layout: (100-105 x 65-70 mm) in 16 long lines. Ruling before folding, on the hair-side which is on the outside of the quire, normally 4 bifolia at a time. Double bounding lines in the outer margin, single in the inner. Pricking in the outer margin guided ruling.
Writing and hands:
- Partly palimpsest, only the upper script concerns us here (the lower script on pp. 203/4, 257/8, and 267/8 is no longer visible, but stitching and ruling marks still to be seen show that the present folios constituted bifolia in the original manuscript which measured ca. 95 x 60 mm. in 10 or 11 long lines: the faint traces of lower script seen only on one side of the folios now paginated 221/2 +235/6 and 241/2 +249/50 show crude cursive minuscule saec. VIII, obviously the debris of a charter (see plate)).
- Punctuation: the medial point marks various pauses.
- Run-overs of the bottom line are supported by a curved stroke.
- Abbreviations include b: (or ƀ) = bus : q; = que; aū = autem; ƀ = bis; c̅ = con; e̅e̅ = esse; is = israel; = men; n̅ = non; n̅r̅, nr̅i = noster, -tri; o̅ and os = omnes; σƴ̲ = orum; p ̓, ꝓ = post, pro; q̍ = qui; ꞅɫ, r̅ = rum, runt; ꞇ̅, ꞇ̓ = ter, tur; u̅, u = uer, uel.
- Spelling is barbarous and shows Visigothic peculiarities such as storia, hubi; also quadraiesimo.
- Ink brown or greyish brown. Script of the main hand is early minuscule with some cursive adhesions, perhaps identical with the upper script of St. Gall 908 (our No. 953): uncial G is used here and there; the shaft of h occasionally bends to the left; the hands of pp. 170-173, and 192/3 are an informal and uncalligraphic minuscule with many cursive elements: noteworthy is the z with its oblique shaft tagged to the right, as in some early Tours manuscripts; ligatures are numerous, Ɛ is used for hard and soft ti.
- The title on p. 142 is in uncial mixed with minuscule in lines alternately black and red: some titles in red uncial, or in mixed uncial and capitals partly daubed with red.
- Many simple initials, one with rope motif.
Additions: A contemporary hand entered the beginning of the Athanasian Creed in uncial on pp. 139/40. Liturgical entries in crude minuscule, saec. IX in., are seen on pp. 141 and 318.
Origin of the manuscript: Written apparently in North Italy, to judge by the script, possibly in Switzerland, in the centre that produced St. Gall MS. 908, famous for its palimpsests, and in part supposedly by Amprosius whose signature in capitals in the form of a cross is seen on p. 142.
Acquisition of the manuscript: Was already at Einsiedeln by the fourteenth century, as is attested by the familiar “maniculae” drawn in the margins by Heinrich von Ligerz, the Einsiedeln librarian from 1324 to 1360.