Project icon: lavishly furnished initial letter with a painting of Ptolemy using an astrolab.

Ptolemaeus Arabus et Latinus

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Cambridge, University Library, Mm 4.43 (2391)

s. XIVin.


probably Paris.


John of Murs, who glossed and foliated the MS, and added the table of contents f. IIv; Julien of Murs (John’s brother), who brought the MS to England in 1356; Richard Holdsworth, Master of Emmanuel College (d. 1649), who bequeathed his books to the University Library.

Parchment, II+317 f. (with f. 198-199, 274-281 and 308-315 gone), a single hand (except for additions f. 316rb-317r), deluxe MS with a miniature f. 1r and numerous decorated initials. The five folia after f. 249 are wrongly numbered 245-249, so that these folio numbers are used twice. In what follows, the duplicates are numbered f. 249bis-2496.

Astrology: table of contents added by John of Murs (IIv); Haly Abenragel, De iudiciis astrorum (1ra-217rb); Haly Embrani, De electionibus horarum, Book II (217va-224va); Ptolemaica (225ra-2495va and 2495va-2496vb); Zael, Liber iudiciorum (2496vb-271va, Introductorium, Quinquaginta precepta and De interrogationibus incomplete); table for computing the zodiacal position of the Moon (271vb), followed by instructions interspersed with Proportiones competentes in astrorum industria, c. 26 and 10 (271vb-272rb); Alkindi (?), Saturnus in Ariete sub radiis… (272va-273rb); ‘Signa. Aries. Secundum Hys<palensem>, signum regale et signum domini… Domus. Secundum Zahe significat vitam et etiam mortem…’ (273va-273vb); Raymundus Lullus, Tractatus novus de astronomia (282ra-316rb); added notes by John and Julien of Murs mentioning the years 1320 and 1341, and ‘Anno domini 1327° currente 21a Ianuarii, hora tertia quasi, fuit natus K<arolus> per regem [Charles V]. Iuliannus’ (316rb); John of Murs, Figura inveniendi sinus kardagarum, added (316v-317r). Blank: I-IIr, 317v.


A Catalogue of the Manuscripts Preserved in the Library of the University of Cambridge, IV, Cambridge, 1861, 300-302; P. R. Robinson, Catalogue of Dated and Datable Manuscripts c. 737-1600 in Cambridge Libraries, I, Cambridge, 1988, 38-39 (no. 77); Raimundi Lulli Opera Latina, XVII, eds M. Pereira, T. Pindl-Büchel, Turnhout, 1989 [Corpus Christianorum Continuatio Mediaevalis, 79], xx; R. Lemay, Le Kitāb at-Tamara (Liber fructus, Centiloquium) d’Abū Ja’far Aḥmad ibn Yūsuf [Ps.-Ptolémée], New York, 1999 [unpublished], I, 297-298; D. Juste, Les Alchandreana primitifs. Étude sur les plus anciens traités astrologiques latins d’origine arabe (xe siècle), Leiden-Boston, 2007, 308; P. Binski, P. Zutshi, S. Panayotova, Western Illuminated Manuscripts: A Catalogue of the Collection in Cambridge University Library, Cambridge, 2011, 292-293 (no. 318); L. Miolo, Le fonds scientifique d’un collège de théologie: le cas de la bibliothèque de Sorbonne 1257-1500, PhD dissertation, Université Lumières Lyon 2, 2017, II, 193-197; L. Miolo, ‘In Quest of Jean des Murs’s Library: An Overview of His Readings and Uses of Manuscripts’, Erudition and the Republic of Letters 4 (2019), 13-39: 31-33.


‘Incipit Liber centilogii Ptholomei cum comento Haly. Dixit Ptholomeus: Iam scripsi tibi, Iesure, libros de hoc quod operantur in Quadripertito stelle in hoc seculo… Scientia stellarum ex te et illis est… (225rb) Quod dixit Ptholomeus, ex te et illis, significat qui res futuras scire desiderat … (225va) Dixit Ptholomeus: Mundanorum mutacio ad hoc et ad illud corporum supracelestium… Doctrina stellarum ex te ex illis est. Nec est (225vb) doctrina in ea ut propter hanc (!) formam — et ego Deum precor ut te diligat. Et perfecta est huius libri translacio 17 die mensis Marcii, 12 die mensis Gumedi secundi anno Arabum 532.’

= Pseudo-Ptolemy, Centiloquium (tr. Plato of Tivoli) (B.1.2), with the propositions also given in the ‘Mundanorum’ version (B.1.4) and in Adelard of Bath’s translation (B.1.1) (=‘threefold’ version). A few short glosses by the scribe (more substantial f. 240r, 249r and 2494v) and by a later hand.


‘Stelle cum caudis sunt 9 — in regibus et divitibus apparebit.’

= Pseudo-Ptolemy, De cometis (B.4). No glosses.