Guide to the Repertorium Chronicarum
Chronicles and Manuscripts
Entries in the Repertorium Chronicarum are made for chronicles (historical works that survive in one or more copies) and for their associated manuscripts (the individual parchment or paper copies of those chronicles).
The near certainty of uniqueness of each of the copies derived from a no-longer-extant original is the primary reason for the existence of the Repertorium Chronicarum. Because the copies were made by hand (not by a printing press), and because copies were often made from copies that had been made from other copies, scholars presume that each manuscript is unique – that each manuscript is quite literally one of a kind. Each inevitably contains variations (omissions, additions, substitutions, reorderings) of letters, words, phrases, passages, or chapters introduced inadvertently or intentionally by the copier. Because scholars usually want to determine the original form of the work as evidence of authorial intention, or conversely sometimes want to determine the later form of the work to account for its interpretation by readers who received it in an altered form, it may be important for them to compare different copies of the work. So they will want to know where all the manuscripts of a particular work are found and where each manuscript stands in relation to the original in time.
Entries for the chroniclers and chronicles:
The entries of the Repertorium are alphabetized by the Latin name of the chronicler (if known), followed, in italics, by the Latin title of the chronicle:
Adalboldus Utraiectensis, Vita Heinrici II Imperatoris.
Or if the chronicle is anonymous (and many are), the title appears by itself:
Abbreviatio Chronicae Bedanae.
If the chronicler or chronicle is known by one or more alternate names, those are added in parenthesis:
Hariulfus Aldenburgensis (Centulensis), Chronicon Centulense.
Abbreviatio Gestorum Regum Francorum (Historia Francorum Monasterii Sancti Dionysii).
The chronicler’s dates and the chronicle’s dates of coverage may by added in parenthesis:
Adamus Murimuthensis (1274/75–1347), Chronicon Sui Temporis (1303-47).
(Since the Repertorium is an on-going research project, the absence of these dates does not mean that they are unknown to scholars, but simply that we have not got around to filling them in.)
For some chronicles, additional information is added in parenthesis after the title to help distinguish it from others with similar titles:
Chronica (Biblical history).
Chronica (Bologna, 1399-1429).
Chronica (Popes, Peter to Hadrian IV).
A few chronicles, apparently lacking Latin titles, are listed under vernacular titles:
Kleine Chronik von Wilhering.
Entries for the manuscripts:
Each manuscript is listed under the entry for each chronicle that it contains (many manuscripts contain multiple chronicles). The entry provides the manuscript’s location, archive, signature, and date of copying (as far as is known).
Abbreviatio Chronicae Bedanae.
- Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, Latin 2341 (?th century).
(Thus the Abbreviatio Chronicae Bedanae is found in Paris, at the Bibliothèque Nationale, as manuscript 2341 of the archive’s Latin collection. We have not yet recorded the date it was copied.)
Some manuscripts are not yet dated in the Repertorium; others are dated more precisely:
- Vaticano, Biblioteca Apostolica, Vaticani Latini 3839 (?th century).
- Oxford, Balliol College, 125 (1442-1444).
- Boulogne-sur-mer, Bibliothèque Municipale, 148 (1745).
Some signatures are simple combinations of letters and numbers; others are more complicated designations referring to collections of divisions with the library:
- Stuttgart, Landesbibliothek, Cod. Theol. Phil. Fol. 100 (15th century).
- London, British Library, Cotton Faustina B VI (?th century).
(Such signatures need not be deciphered, but must be exactly provided when requesting or describing the manuscript.)
Manuscripts that were formerly in another location or were formerly identified by another signature have that information given in square brackets:
- Wien, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, 387 [Salisbury, 421] (9th century).
(Here the manuscript, now in Wien, was formerly in Salisbury with the signature 421.)