Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, fonds français 1422

[Part 1]

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General information

LanguageLanguage object (44)
Approx. datec. 1330 to 1345
Date notesStones; Micha 1960, 173 'XIIIe siècle'.
Place(s) of productionTournai
Stones; this is confirmed by the border decoration (baguettes ending in vine inhabited by humans, animals and chimaera).
First words of second recto folio[f. 4ra] chou faites que vous ni gaigneres
First words of last recto folio[f. 108ra] a .j. arbre et ving cha amont tout a pie
Incipit[f. 3ra] C hi endroit dis li contes que q(ua)nt / agrauains se fu partis de ses com / paignons . si co(m)me vous aues oit . / q(ui)l erra .ii. jours sans auenture trouuer con / doie ramenteuoir en liure . Et entous lieus / lau il aloit . fust encastel ou enbois demandoit / nouueles dou lancelot a tous chiaus quil / encontroit . [...] /
Explicit[f. 108vb] Chi se taist ore li <contes a parler> con / tes a parler des conpaignons qui estoi / ent demouiet ou tertre . Et retourne / a parler de lanc(elos) //


Material:Material object (4)
Condition:Generally in good condition. Good quality parchment with few holes (f. 10, f. 74, f. 82), irregularities (f. 60), no tears or stitches. In the corner of f. 53 the outline of the skin is still visible. F. 76 to f. 79 clear distinction between hairside and skinside.



1-108 113

Quire structure:Ten quaternions. The last quire is an irregular quire of three folios.
Quire marks:
Catchword disposition:MSCatchwordDisposition object (10)

Physical description

No. of illustrations:26
General illustration:The manuscript starts with a miniature (height: 13 lines) representing Agravain at the Tertre as Caitis, which confirms its exceptional status. The columns are decorated with an L frame consisting of baguettes or branches in red and blue decorated with vine and ivy inhabited by birdsm and chimaera. The scene in the lower margin represents a woman dansing to the music of two fable creatures. The text is otherwise structured by means of Even if the manuscripts BnF fr. 1422-1424 once belonged to a single codex, this probably was the first page. If lost volumes of the set contained the previous parts of the 'Lancelot', a material division must have taken place at this point. The text is structured by means of historiated initials (height: 8 lines), alternatingly blue on a scarlet field or scarlet on a blue field. Field and initials are decorated with white patterns and the field is contained in a gilt frame. The backgrounds consist of geometric patterns with some elements of decor. The frame extend into borders which are inhabited by birds, animals human figures, chimaera and animals and decorated with vine in blue, red and gold, dragons and chimaera.
General decoration:The text is further subdivided by pen-decorated initials (height: 3 lines), alternatively blue and goldleaf. The blue initials are flourished with penwork in red ink, the gold initials are decorated with blue flourishings.
Evidence of readership:f. 19r.: annotation in 16th c. hand in the lower margin. f. 66r.: annotation in 16th c. hand in the lower margin.
Foliations description:Foliation in arabic numerals in the top right-hand corner of the recto. Number 48 occurs twice. As from f. 100 second foliation, also in the top right corner and arabic numerals, running from 50 (crossed out).

Mise en page

Description 1Double horizontal through lines at the top, middle and bottom.
Page sampledf. 44r
Page dimensions304x220 (mm)
Justification215x165 (mm)
17mm between columns
Column ruling present in Colours object (6) (RulingMaterials object (3) )
Line ruling present in Colours object (6) (RulingMaterials object (3) )
RubricationOnly used for pen decoration of blue initials.
Writing above top line?False
Sample page layout:


Level of Execution:Execution object (4)
ScriptScript object (4)
Folio rangeFrom 3ra to 108vb
Date?1300 to 1350
Scribe description:Northern textualis rotundus with two-compartment a with closed upper lobe. Tongued 'e' at the end of the line. Use of 'j' in initial position. Round 's' in final position. Use of 'v' in initial position. Diacritics on 'i' in all position; diacritic on 'y'. The descender of 'q' curves slightly to the right. Distinctive hairlines at the end of the limb of 'h', at the top of 'l' (fork) and at the horizontal strokes of straight 'r' and 't' in final position. Abbreviations include superscript vowels, nasal bar used as general abbreviation mark and also used for q(ue), com- (9) and -us (superscript 9) abbreviations, 's'-like apostrophe, 'p' with bar through descender. Punctuation is limited to punctus. No indication of word-separation Corrections in the margins, expungation.