MRJ number
College classmark

Vellum and paper, 8.125 x 4.25, ff. 89: 39, 24, etc., lines to a page.  15th cent., in two hands, one good.

Vellum wrapper composed of a folded leaf of a folio MS. (Canon Law).  On the 2nd cover is a button of horn and in large letters the word Confessio twice written.

Collation :  116 (wants 1 in 2nd half) 220 wanting one, with many quires inserted in 2nd half, viz.: after 11th a2, after 16th b2 (+ 1) c4 – e4 f8 g8 (+ 2 before 8) h4 i6 (wants 2) | 38  (+ 2 after 5).



A Confessor’s Manual, in English and Latin.

The first hand has written ff. 1-26, 30-34, 77-80, and has left some blanks, which have been filled, and more leaves added, by the second hand.

The first hand begins:

                       Pride.    7 peccata mortalia

       J counceile you to be sorie for {y}oure synne.

The last things written by this hand are the ten commandments, etc., etc., and Casus episcopales.  The main part of the text is occupied with enquires to be made of penitents, and penances, etc.

The second hand, writing mostly in Latin, amplifies these topics.

Manuscript extra information



Negative microfilm in St John's College Library.


Ex dono Thomas Baker.


P. S. Jolliffe, Check List of Middle English Prose Writings of Spiritual Guidance (Toronto, 1974), pp. 77, 131.  This is the only known MS. of this text.


f. 1b - 13b.  Thesis by Maria Luisa Maggioni deposited in the Library of the Universita Cattolica del. S Cuore, Milan.  The thesis consists of 150 pages, title 'Un manuale per confessori del quattrocento Inglese'.


E. Duffy, The Stripping of the Altars (Yale, 1992), pp. 58-60.  Copy in St John's College Library.


f. 1b: Tho: Baker Coll: Jo; Socius ejectus ex dono ornatiss: viri Zach: Gray.