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Ipomadon and Other Works

English, written on paper, late fifteenth century


This fifteenth-century literary anthology contains several different items written in a number of different hands. The volume includes texts of saints’ lives, chivalric romances, copies of letters and a treatise on good manners.

The largest item is Ipomadon, an Anglo-Norman romance composed in around 1180 by Hue de Rotelande, which tells the story of Ipomadon, a young Apulian prince, and his lover, the Queen of Calabria. The Chetham’s copy is believed to be the earliest surviving Middle English version, and is composed in a dialect originating from the north of England, although from a London scriptorium.

The manuscript was purchased for the Library at the Farmer sale of 1798 for the sum of fourteen guineas.