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Munich » Bayerische Staatsbibliothek » MS Clm 396

Library Place Munich
Library Name Bayerische Staatsbibliothek
Shelfmark MS Clm 396
Folio Range Whole MS (43 fols)
Date IX ex.
  • Germany
  • Southern Germany (?)

Munich, Hofbibliothek

  • Homily on the end of the world (acephalous fragment inc. et omnia uanitas. et omnis dies timendus est nobis tamquam ultimus) (1r)
  • Exegetical-computistical passage on Creation and the bissextus, inc. <I>terum interrogo uos qui bene nostis duas ebdomadas in quibus omnia fecit Deus inter duo elementa (1r)
  • Isidore, De natura rerum (1v-34r)
  • Diagram and Hisperic colophon, inc. Acsi nautores post tethicam gurgitum molestiam (34v)
  • Excerpt from Orosius, Historiae adversum paganos, I, 2, 1–105, titled Liber canonum in D(e)i nomen ratio totius orbis vel prouintiarum (35r-42r)
  • Recapitulatio de nomina (a copy of the Nomina prouinciarum from Polemius Silvius, Laterculus) (42v-43r)
  • Item nomina prouinciarum uel ciuitatum (the Notitia Galliarum, incomplete) (43r-v).
Old Breton Materials No
Irish / Hiberno-Latin materials Yes
Connection with Brittany

There is considerable confusion in relation to this manuscript's origin. In her catalogue, Bierbrauer (1990: 137) indicates that it was written at the end of the ninth century in 'Bretagne oder Wales', further adding (at p. 138) that this MS 'ist nach Bischoff in einem Zentrum mit keltischen Traditionen, vielleicht in Wales oder in der Bretagne entstanden.' Now, there is no doubt as to this manuscript's 'insular' character, especially in view of the numerous insular abbreviations (for autem, con, enim, etc.) occurring throughout, as shown by Bischoff in his Katalog (Kat. §2927, where, interestingly, Bischoff refrained from indicating any explicit attribution to a given scriptorium or geographical area). Bierbrauer's reference to an origin in Brittany or Wales appears to be based on Bischoff 1966: 182, 185 (n. 94); however, in that publication Bischoff rather focussed on the origin of the Hisperic colophon copied at fol. 34v—a text whose 'Celtic-Latin' character is indeed quite unmistakable. Since in his Katalog entry Bischoff wrote that the colophon in question 'auf eine bretonische Vorlage deutet', it seems eminently possible that he thought that the insular features of Munich Clm 396 derived in fact from its exemplar, rather than being due to the place of origin of the MS itself, which, on account of its five interlinear glosses in Old High German, was in all likelihood written in a (Southern?) German scriptorium (note that the probably erroneous attribution to Brittany or Wales is repeated in Paniagua 2018: 96, 117). Nonetheless, in view of the fairly widespread Breton practice of composing colophons in Hisperic Latin (cf. e.g. Lemoine 1988; Lemoine 1995), the possibility that Munich Clm 396 was copied (at least partially) from a Breton exemplar must be taken very seriously (cf. Arnaud-Lindet 1990: lxxvii, 'Il a été écrit en caroline par un scribe insulaire, ou qui copiait un modèle insulaire'). Such an origin for this manuscript's exemplar is suggested also by the rare spelling epdomata (instead of ebdomata, 'week') at fol. 5r-v (for the Breton and Irish affiliations of this peculiar spelling, see Bisagni 2020a: 37–46). The presence of an excerpt from Orosius's Historiae—a text widely read and glossed in Early Medieval Brittany—may lend further support to this hypothesis. In this context, it is also worth mentioning the possibility that the above-mentioned German glosses may reflect a 'bavarianization' of Old English glosses (cf. Thoma 1963: 225): could we perhaps imagine a line of transmission for this MS from England to Germany via Brittany and Francia?

Another interesting feature of this MS deserves to be briefly discussed here: the on-line digital facsimile allows to see that the first two folios were cut off, and some letters are still visible in what remains of the margins. That this removal was motivated by the very nature of the text contained in the lost folios, rather than by any practical reasons, is shown by the fact that the conclusion of this text, which can still be read in what is now fol. 1r, was crossed out—a treatment typically reserved to texts whose contents had come to be seen as less than 'orthodox.' The few extant concluding words of the text suggest that this was a homily focussing on the end of the world; while the remaining fragment is too short to enable us to guess what may have triggered the rather extreme censorship described above, it is nonetheless most interesting that the following words can be read in the fragment surviving on fol. 1r: Post ignes exmara [sic] cruces atque bestias sancti cumagno [sic] triumpho ibunt. This passage corresponds very closely to some lines from an antiphon on the martyrs only attested, to my knowledge, in the Antiphonary of Bangor (Milan, Biblioteca Ambrosiana, C. 5 inf., fol. 32v): Post ignes et lamminas, / cruces adque bestias, / sancti cum magno triumpho / uehuntur in regno / et in refrigerio. This textual match raises the concrete possibility that this was an Irish homily, or a continental (Breton?) homily relying on Irish sources. Finally, on fol. 1r the 'censored' homiletic fragment is followed by a brief and puzzling exegetical-computistical passage (not crossed-out) concerning the week of Creation and the bissextus. As for the copy of Polemius Silvius's Nomina prouinciarum occurring at fols 42v-43r, Paniagua (2018: 113–21, with stemma codicum at p. 117) has shown that Munich 396 may derive from a stemmatic node shared with Paris, BnF, Lat. 2123, a MS written c. AD 814–816 at Flavigny.

Number(s) in Bischoff's Katalog 2927
Essential bibliography

Arnaud-Lindet 1990: lxxvii; Bierbrauer 1990: 137 (§262); Bischoff 1966: 182, 185 (n. 94); BStK Online; CLH §570; L&S §330; Paniagua 2018: 33, 95–7, 113–21; Thoma 1963: 224–5.

URLs for digital facsimile
Last Updated 2021-06-07 14:34:40
Author Jacopo Bisagni
DHBM Identifier #87
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