A Glossed Wycliffite Psalter, Volume 1: Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Bodley 554

ISBN : 9780198835202

Michael P. Kuczynski
368 ページ
156 x 234 mm
Early English Text Society Original Series



  • A critical edition of a Middle English commentary on the Psalms based on a Late Version text of the Wycliffite Bible translation
  • Features Psalms text with extensive marginal glosses reproduced as sequentially numbered footnotes
  • The textual notes record the nature of scrupulous scribal corrections throughout the manuscript and of variants between this manuscript and others containing some of the glosses
  • Includes complete Latin sources for the glosses from Nicholas of Lyra and full bibliographic references for the sources from Augustine as well as explanatory notes to the glosses to aid comparison of the Middle English versions of the glosses and the original Latin
  • Contains multiple plates from the base manuscript and other glossed Wycliffite Bible manuscripts to help readers visualize the careful layout and design of the manuscript materials
  • Provides a Glossary to the Psalms text and the Psalms glosses

This is a two-volume critical edition of a Middle English commentary on the Psalms based on a Late Version text of the Wycliffite Bible translation. The commentary takes the form of 1,363 shorter and longer glosses, variously interrelated, prepared by scholars sympathetic with the Wycliffite movement, and coordinated carefully with the Psalms text. Its early fifteenth-century base manuscript, MS Bodley 554, was prepared to allow reading and use of the Psalms alongside the best recent and more ancient Latin commentaries, primarily those of Nicholas of Lyra, OFM, and St. Augustine. The glosses are both philological and homiletic, testifying to an avidity at the heart of Wycliffism for the close relationship between textual accuracy in the understanding of Scripture and moral rigor in its application to the concerns of medieval Christian individuals and communities. They display a special interest in understanding the Christian Psalms by way of their Hebrew originals.
The edition provides textual notes and variants to parts of the commentary that survive in other Wycliffite Bible manuscripts, the complete Latin sources from Lyra's fourteenth-century Latin text, bibliographic references to the Augustinian sources, and a glossary to the Psalms and commentary texts. There are also extensive explanatory notes concerning the importance of Lyra's exegesis to two other unedited manuscripts related to Wycliffite biblical scholarship: Wyclif's Latin commentary on the entire Bible, the Psalms portion of which is preserved in Oxford, St. John's College MS 171; and a Middle English summary of the Bible in Oxford, Trinity College MS 93.


Volume I.
List of Illustrations
Manuscript Sigla

I: The Glosses
II: Description of the Base Manuscript
Handwriting and scribal practice
Dialect, phrasing, and vocabulary
III: Other Manuscripts containing B 554 Glosses
Manuscripts containing only title glosses
Manuscripts containing title glosses and other glosses
Manuscripts containing other glosses but no title glosses
Miscellaneous manuscripts
IV: The Context of B 554
V: Planning and Assembling B 554
VI: Who Used B 554?
VII: Editorial Method
The Glossed Psalter, Psalms 1-119

Volume II.
Texts, Psalms 120-150
Textual Notes
Explanatory Notes


Michael P. Kuczynski is Professor of English at Tulane University. He specializes in Middle English literary history and late medieval manuscripts, especially of the Psalms. His most recent research has been on the Middle English glosses to the Wycliffite Bible. He has published widely on Middle English poetry and prose, especially of a religious nature, and in such related areas as Old English poetry, medieval astronomy, the contemplative (mystical) life during the Middle Ages, and antiquarianism or the history of the scholarly recovery of the medieval past.