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The Old English Bede and the Glosses in the Tiberius Bede

From: Parergon
Volume 30, Number 1, 2013
pp. 1-49 | 10.1353/pgn.2013.0041



London, British Library, Manuscript Cotton Tiberius C.ii is a copy of Bede’s Historia Ecclesiastica dating from the early ninth century, and probably written at Canterbury. It contains various kinds of glossing and annotation made between the ninth and fourteenth centuries, including bilingual word-lists of the ninth century, and over four hundred scratched (dry-point) glosses in Old English, most if not all dating from the tenth century. A systematic analysis of the distribution of scratched glosses and comparison of individual glosses with the text of the Old English translation of Bede’s Historia indicates that several scholars (perhaps at Canterbury) had access to and drew upon the anonymous Mercian translation to aid their reading, study, and glossing of the Latin text.

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