Bonn, Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek, S 526

li romans de lancelot (colophon, f. 477vc)

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General information

LanguageLanguage object (44)
Approx. date28-8-1286
Date notesDate of completion in the colophon (f. 477vb) 'En lan del incarna / tion el mois daoust / leiour deuant le s(aint) iehan decolase'.
Place(s) of productionAmiens, Saint-Omer
Place suggested by Stones 2013, 69. The Lancelot-Graal project gives Amiens and Cambrai or Thérouanne. In the colophon (477vb), the scribe refers to himself as 'Arnulfus de Kayo [...] qui est ambianis'.
Table of contentsOn f. 170v, 15th-c. table of contents in German added by Wirich VI von Daun-Oberstein (Fischer 1992, 29). 'Item dise vorder buch ist vom Gral, wie der dorch Josep von Armothia fonden dar uch Merlins buch und wie kong Artus erboren ward [...] und kunig [A]rtus dot, und wie Lancilot am lesten eyn eynsedel wart und starw in dem leben. Item gesch[riben] zum Obersteyn im x iiii c und xcv jar mit myner W. hant. etc. Dis buch hat zu samen iiii c blat und ume lxx blat. Item iii c und lxxxiii gemalter stuck. Im xiiii c und xcv verschlagen zum Obersteyne. Que remede' (Manuscripta Mediaevalia). [This book is about the Grail, how it was found by Joseph of Arimathea, also Merlin's book and how king Arthur was born [...] and king Arthur's death, and how Lancelot became a hermit in the end and died. This was written in Oberstein in 1495 in my own hand, etc. This book has about 470 folios and 383 paintings. Recorded in Oberstein in 1495. Que remede.' The portion omitted in the transcription of MM ([...]), notes that Arthur was an illegitimate child, and that the other part of story tells us about Lancelot's childhood and demise.
First words of second recto folio
First words of last recto folio
Incipit[f. 1ra] De ioseph de arimathie / Cil qui setient / (et) iuge auplus / petit (et) auplus / pecheour de tou(us) / mande salus el (com)menceme(n)t / de ceste estoire / atous ciaus qui lor cuers ont (et) lor cre / ance en la sainte trinite .. Ce est el pere . / Ce est el fil . Ce est el saint esperit . Elp(er)e / par qui toytes choses sont establies . /
Explicit[f. 477vb] pour lamour de nostre signour ; Si / setaist ore maistres Gautiers map del / ystoire de lanselot . car bien la tout / menee a fin selonc les choses qui ena / vindrent (et) define ensi son liure si ou / treement que apres ce nen porroit nus / raconter chose quil nen mentist . // E.x.p.l.i.c.i.t. Arnulfus de / kayo scripsit istum librum qui / est ambianis . En lan del incarna / tion el mois daoust / leiour deuant le s(aint) iehan decolase / [477vc] Ici fenist la mort dou roy / artu et des autres Et / tout li romans de lancelot //

Related MS

These two MSS are closely related in their version of 'Lancelot' segments, and particularly that of the 'Journey to Sorelois'. After the non-cyclic introduction (I-II,9), the text is in the short cyclic version (II,10-VIII) and continues with the long cyclic version (IX-XXXV).
RelationshipType object (12)Manuscript object (190)
Manuscript object (253)


Material:Material object (4)



1-412 510+1 6-3812 3912+1 408+1

Quire structure:Forty quires. Thirty-seven sexternions. Quire 5 consists of a quinion and a singleton. Quire 39 combines a sexternion and a singleton. The last quire is a quaternion with a singleton. (Fischer 1992, 26).
Quire marks:
Catchword disposition:MSCatchwordDisposition object (17)

Physical description

General description:Number of illustrations according to the Lancelot-Graal project. Fischer 1992, 27 refers to 345 miniatures. The description at Manuscripta Mediaevalia (see: digitisation) has 349 miniatures / historiated initials.
No. of illustrations:346
General illustration:Single-column miniatures (11- 14 lines) on gilt grounds, framed in blue and pink bars, decorated with white flourishings, orange quadrangles in the corners. Characters with pale complexion, wearing long dress, the folds traced in black ink. Principal colours are blue, pink, orange, light green, brown. Six images arranged in two registers of three miniatures at the beginning of the 'Estoire' (f. 1r). The 'Lancelot' (f 171ra), 'Agravain' (f. 307ra), 'Queste' (f. 406ra) and 'Mort' (443va) are introduced by two images at the top of columns 'a' and 'b'. Minimal use of decor, some images framed in Gothic architecture (with arches and turrets, e.g. f. 1 at the beginning of the 'Estoire'). Historiated initials (height: 8 lines), pink or blue on grounds of goldleaf and the other colour, decorated with white flourishings, with gilt frames traced in black ink.
General decoration:The beginning of 'branches' is marked by foliate initials (height: 4 lines), pink or blue, on grounds of goldleaf and the other colour, decorated with tendrils in blue, pink and orange,with partial borders of angular, pink and blue baguettes, decorated with white flourishings and goldleaf, sometimes supporting angels (f. 1), hybrids (e.g. f. 69r, animals, humans (e.g. organ-player f. 1r). After miniatures in the text, champ-like initials (height: 4 lines, goldleaf on pink and blue grounds, decorated with white flourishings, some with partial border. The borders associated with this kind of initial are less extensive. At the beginning of paragraphs, pen-decorated initials (height: 2 lines), alternatingly blue and red with flourishings in the other colour, decorated with j-borders in the same colours. Miniatures are preceded (at the beginning of branches, sometimes followed) by rubricated captions. Different types of line-fillers: puzzle bars in red and blue ink, fish, and birds' heads in blue ink. 'L(iber)' followed by a roman numeral, in red ink, in the upper margin of the first folio of each branch of the text. These 'books' also have ituli in red ink (f. 1ra: 'De ioseph de arimathie'. f. 60ra: 'Ici comence de merlin'. f. 82rb: 'Ici comence des premiers faiz le Roy artu'. f. 171ra: 'Ici comence de la marche de Gaulle'. f. 259rc: Et comence de Galahot. f. 307ra: 'Et comence la premiere partie de la queste lancelot'. f. 335ra: 'Ici comence la seconde partie de la queste lancelot'. f. 406ra: 'Ici comence dou saint graal'. f. 443va: 'Ici comence la mort dou Roy artu et des autres') and explicits, also in red ink (f. 59vc 'Ici fine de ioseph de arimathie'. f. 82ra: 'Ici fine de merlin'. f. 170ra 'Ici fine des premiers faiz le Roy artu'. f. 259rb: 'Ici fine de la marche de Gaulle'. f. 307ra: 'Ici fenist de galahot'. f. 334vc: 'Ici fenist la permiere partie de la queste lancelot'. f. 405vb: 'Ici fenist la seconde partie de la queste lancelot.' f. 443rc: 'Ici fine dou saint graal'. 477vb: 'Ici fenist la mort dou Roy artu et des autres Et out le romans de lancelot') (Mölk 1992, 8-10).
Evidence of readership:On f. 126r, gloss in Latin (by Wirich VI?). On f. 170v, table of contents, written by Wirich VI von Daun-Oberstein. On ff. 169v, 172r, 174r, 412r drawings (human faces) by the rubricator. On f. 309v., later marginal drawings and a coat of arms, left incomplete (also: ff. 172r, 470r). (Manuscripta Mediaevalia)
Foliations description:Modern foliation in arabic numerals in the upper right corner of the recto.

Mise en page

Description 1After f. 419v, the justification becomes more compact (315x220 mm) and the number of lines varies (56 lines).
Page sampled
LayoutMSLayout object (3)
Page dimensions465x325 (mm)
Justification335x220 (mm)
12mm between columns
Column ruling present in Colours object (6)
Line ruling present in Colours object (6)
RubricationCaptions in red ink precede miniatures. Tituli for the major branches of the text and explicits in red ink.
Writing above top line?False
Sample page layout:


Level of Execution:Execution object (4)
ScriptScript object (4)
Folio rangeFrom f. 1ra to f. 477vb
Scribe description:Meticulous, and consistent Gothic bookhand (Fischer 1992, 26). In the colophon (f. 477, the scribeis identified as 'Arnulfus de Kayo [...] qui est ambianis'. Rounded Northern textualis, with two-compartment 'a', both open and closed (double lobe 'a') of the upper compartment, forked and clubbed ascenders, uncial 'd', 'e' without tongue, 'g' with looped lower lobe, limb of 'h' slightly curves to the left below the baseline, diacritic on 'i' not limited to sequences of minims, mainly straight 's' in final position, but also round 's' and trailing 's' at the end of the line, vertical stroke of 't' barely ascends above the headstroke, ', 'v' occurs in initial position, dotted 'y'. Fusion of 'o' and round 'r'. Relatively low degree of abbreviation, including crossed tironian 'et', 'con' and 'us' abbreviation, nasal bar, apostrophe, superscript vowels ('a', 'i'). Ligature: 'st'. Word-separation unmarked. Punctuation: punctus and punctus elevatus.


DescriptionThe table of contents in German on f. 170v informs us about the 15th-c ownership of the MS.'Diß buch hat zu samen IIIIc blat vnd vme LXX blat. Jtem IIIc vnd LXXXIIII gemalt stuck. Jm Xllll c vnd XCV / Wirich (?) zum Obersteyne. Que remede'. (Fischer 1992, 29). Wirich was chamberlain to Charles VIII of France (Manuscript Mediaevalia).
PlacePlace object (212)
OwnershipPerson object (130)
DescriptionAfter the death of Wirich VI in 1501, the MS passed into the collection of the counts of Manderscheid-Blankenheim (Fischer 1992, 29).
Datec. 1501 to 1520
PlacePlace object (213)
OwnershipPerson object (131)