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The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
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DIMEV 6650
IMEV 4154
NIMEV 4154
Whoso will over read this book
The ‘Long Charter of Christ’ (B text) — 414 lines in couplets
Note: For the A Text see 2859; for the C Text see 1913.
Title(s): The ‘Long Charter’ of Christ
Subjects: charters, of Christ; devotional treatises; instruction, religious
Versification: — two-line — aa



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ee.2.15, ff. 107-111
First Lines:
…Nowe derworthy Sowle herkyn to me
And a newe Ioye I shall telle the…
Last Lines:
…To that blysse I may the brynge
That of nought made alle thyng
Note: Missing lines 1-68.
Attributed Title: þe Chartur (RT)
Editions:
Spalding, Mary Caroline. The Middle English Charters of Christ. Bryn Mawr, PA: Bryn Mawr College, 1914: 46-81.
2.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ff.2.38, ff. 47vb-50va
First Lines:
Who so will on rede this boke
And wyth hys goostly eye þeron loke
To odur scole dar he not wende
To saue hys soule fro the fende…
Last Lines:
…To blysse y may the brynge
That of noght made all thynge
Attributed Title: here foloweþ þe chartire of criste (f. 47vb)
Facsimiles:
McSparran, Frances, and Pamela R. Robinson. “Introduction.” Cambridge University Library MS Ff.2.38. London: Scolar Press, 1979.
Editions:
Spalding, Mary Caroline. The Middle English Charters of Christ. Bryn Mawr, PA: Bryn Mawr College, 1914: 46-81.
3.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ii.3.26, ff. 238ra-240
First Lines:
Hho so euyr will rede this boke
And with gostly ey thereyn loke…
Last Lines:
…to that blysse he may vs brynge
That made of noȝt all maner thynge
Attributed Title: Bona carta gloriose passionis do / minum nostri Ihesu christi (f. 238ra); Explicit Carta Ihesu Cristi (f. 240)
Editions:
Spalding, Mary Caroline. The Middle English Charters of Christ. Bryn Mawr, PA: Bryn Mawr College, 1914: 46-81.
4.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ii.4.9, ff. 42v-47
First Lines:
Ho so euyr wyll rede ouyr this boke
And wyth his gostely yere In loke…
Last Lines:
…Be twen to iewes was I putt
Ihesu hygh g kynge of ryght
Note: An incomplete text.
Attributed Title: Explicit feoffemente Ihesu (f. 47)
Editions:
Spalding, Mary Caroline. The Middle English Charters of Christ. Bryn Mawr, PA: Bryn Mawr College, 1914: 46-81.
5.Source: London, British Library Cotton Caligula A.II, ff. 77ra-79rb
First Lines:
Who so wyll ouer Rede thys boke
And with hys gostly ye þer on loke…
Last Lines:
…Ihesu yn þat holy place
Graunte vs to se þy holy face
Note: ‘Amen / Explicit’ by scribe at end, f. 79rb.
Attributed Title: Carta ihesu cristi (by scribe in upper margin, f. 77 and as RT on verso leaves thereafter); Charta Jesu Christi (f. 1, sixteenth-century list of contents)
Editions:
Spalding, Mary Caroline. The Middle English Charters of Christ. Bryn Mawr, PA: Bryn Mawr College, 1914: 46-81.
6.Source: London, British Library Harley 2382, ff. 111v-118
First Lines:
Wwoso wil ouer rede this boke
And with gostly eyen ther on loke…
Last Lines:
…To that blisse y may the bryng
that of myght made al thyng
Attributed Title: Testamentum Cristi (ff. 112-118, as RT, by scribe); Explicit Testamentum Cristi (f. 118, after end of text, by scribe)
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Minor Poems of the Vernon Manuscript, Part 2. EETS o.s. 117 (1901; repr. 1973): 637-57.
7.Source: Cambridge MA, Harvard University, Houghton Library, Richardson 22, ff. 82v-89v
First Lines:
Who so wole ouer rede þis booke
And wiþ his gostly yȝe þereon loke
To oþer scole þar he nat wende
To saue his sowle fro þe feende…
Last Lines:
…To þat blysse I may þe brynge
That of nowht made all þynge
Note: 422 lines; does not end imperfectly.
8.Source: Corning, NY, Corning Museum of Glass 6 [olim Currer], ff. 123v-130v
First Lines:
Who so wyll euer rede þis boke
& with hys gostly eyen þer on loke
To oþer scole þer he not wende
To save hys soule from þe fende…
Last Lines:
…To þat blys I maye þe bryng
Þat of nouȝt made all þyng
Note: 414 lines.
9.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library, Takamiya Deposit 4 [olim Phillipps 8820], ff.
First Lines:
Who so will ouer rede this boke
And with his gostly eygh theron loke…
Last Lines:
…To that blisse I may the brynge
That of nought made alle thynge
Note: Second text after Speculum (MS unfoliated; follows table of chapters of Speculum Vitae).
Attributed Title: The chartour of oure lorde Ihesu Crist
10.Source: Canterbury, Canterbury Cathedral Library Addit. 46, ff. 4v-4
First Lines:
who wyll euer rede…
…oulke to odyr scole there…he wyn…
Last Lines:
…for loue of the nyne monces with he y was to take
mendys for thy trespas or y yn to thys
wordel was borne
Amen
Note: The resized fragment bears a number ‘4’ what is the verso of the leaf. Copied as prose.
Editions:
Boffey, Julia, and A. S. G. Edwards. “Unrecorded Middle English Verse Texts in a Canterbury Cathedral Library Manuscript.” Medium Ævum 72 (2003): 49-62: 55.