Aristoteles, Logica vetus cum commentariis

Aristoteles, Categoriae uel praedicamenta - De Quantitate; Porphyrius, Isagoge, cum anonymo commentario; Sigerus de Cortraco, Ars Priorum


Sydney, State Library of New South Wales, SC/INC/037 (host volume)

Remarks by the Editor

The editor wishes to acknowledge the generous support of Dr. William O. Duba, Dr Mark Thakker, and Prof. em. Dr. Sten Ebbesen for their contribution to both description and transcription. All errors are my own. 

General Information

Title Aristoteles, Logica vetus cum commentariis
Shelfmarks SC/INC/037 (host volume)
Material Parchment
Place of Origin Perh. France
Date of Origin s. xiii 2, with addition of s. xiv in.
Script, Hands

Original parts written by single hand, writing a small bookhand, in a type of Gothic script (Northern Textualis). Small gauge, heavily abbreviated script, with simplified letter-forms (note variant forms of 'a' and use of straight 's' in final position), suggestive of litterae scholasticae, or university script, which is usually found in books written in connection with the major universities, especially Oxford and Paris.

General Remarks

The text has errors. Interlinear corrections by erasure, expunctuation and strikethrough of letters, words, and whole clauses. Mostly look to be contemporaneous with the main text: interlineal, some glosses or variant readings also added above the main text. To the Organon, Siger of Courtrai's treatise Ars priorum, was added in a small Gothic bookhand, perhaps in the early 14th C, in 2 cols., on a previously blank leaf, the presumptive outer leaf of the now lost parent quire. 

Original Condition

Number of Columns 1
Number of Lines 20 – 21
Line Height 2 – 5 mm
Ruling Pricking in (original) outer margin; ruling in faint brown ink.

No medieval or early foliation sequence evident. The fragment designated as Fgm 1 has been bound the wrong way round. So Fgm 1r was the original verso. 

More about the Condition

The leaves at present are cut down. They have wide margins, but each has lost several mm. from its original dimensions which are unknown

Book Decoration and Musical Notation


The volume is rubricated, with red paraph marks, large capitals, in-fill to small caps, underlining, and some penwork flourishing. 


  • Content Item
    • Persons Aristoteles Latinus
    • Text Language Latin
    • Title Aristoteles Categoriae (editio composita)
    • Content Description

      Fgm 1r: initial words being "... septem [....] ad null(u)m c(om)munem", p. 55, ln 2. (4b25) the final words being "... et albu(m) q(ua)ntu(m) sit assignans sup[erficie]..." p. 56, ln 24 (5b5)  

      Fgm 1v: initial words being "... h(oc) non q(uia) s(u)b(stant)ia non est a s(u)b(stant)ia...", p. 52, ln 24. (3b35) the final words being "... susceptibilia c(ontra)rior(um) cum n(u)lla in eis passio..." p. 54, ln 9 (4b10)

    • Fgm 1v (detail)
    • Edition Aristoteles Latinus. Editioni curandae praesidet L. Minio-Paluello, vol. I, 1-5. Categoriae, Editio Composita (vulgata) - [6] De Quantitate.
    • Remarks

      Collating test passages suggests both texts in both fragments contain many differences, both large-scale and smaller details, inclding word order, orthography etc., that distinguish them from that edited by Minio-Paluello, the Categoriae. Based on the reported readings the closest affinity seems to be with text of Ch Chartres, Bibliothèque Municipale, 497 (141), sec. XII

  • Content Item
    • Persons Porphyrii Isagoge
    • Text Language Latin
    • Title Porphyrii Isagoge, cum anonymo commentario
    • Content Description

      Fgm 2r: initial words being "Cum sit necessarium, grisarori [sic] (et) ad eam..." p. 5, ln 2. (I.3)
      the final words being "... et ab aliis sep(ar)ante(s), diceba(mus) omne(m) illa(m)... p. 6, ln 20. (2.9)

      Fgm 2ra: Anon. Comm. on Porphyrius: initial words being 'Cum sit necessarium Rationalis anima immediate exivit a suo creatore, et ideo appetit assimilari ei ... ; final words being '... de ista determinatur in libro Posteriorum'

    • Fgm 2r
    • Edition Aristoteles Latinus. Editioni curandae praesidet L. Minio-Paluello, vol. I, 6-7. Categoriarum Supplementa, Porphyrii Isagoge, Transl. Boethii
    • Remarks

      The main text of the Isagoge is written in a single-column surounded by an anon. and unidentified commentary. The text has errors but test collation with Minio-Paluello seems closest to the reported readings of his siglum Cb (now München, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Clm 14516 sec. X ex.-XI in.)

      The Isagoge commentary text reflects interests in classical rhetorical traditions and makes mention of 'Tullius in Rhetorica' (cf. Cicero, De inventione II.2-3, ad sensum, non ad verbum). This may be suggestive of locality, or have localisable significance suggestive of Italian influence in the composition of the text. 

  • Content Item
    • Persons Sigerus de Cortraco, m. 1341
    • Text Language latin
    • Title Sigerus de Cortraco, Ars Priorum
    • Content Description

      Fgm 2va: initial words being "... <<est>> pars organica <<totius>> philosophiae, ut dicit Simplicius in
      Praedicamentis ..."

      p. 3, ln 1 ; the final words being "... ut dicit Avicenna / last line: no word readable ..." p. 5 ln 13

      Fgm 2vb: "... sic sophisticum … … …. …. … de subiecto est liber ..."

      p. 7, ln 15 ; the final words being "... divisivus aut collectivus(?) ...." p. 8, ln 22

    • Fgm 2v
    • Edition Sigerus de Cortraco, Ars Priorum. ed. G. Wallerand, in Les oeuvres de Siger de Coutrai. Etude critique et textes inédite (Louvain, 1913).
    • Remarks

      This text comes from Sigerus de Cortraco's Ars Priorum. This item was added to the main text, by a later hand, in 2 cols., on a previouly blank leaf. This item which on grounds of script and text has a probable terminus a quo from c. 1300, may have served to preface to the books of the Logica vetus which followed.



Perh. France


Host volume has 16th C. ownership inscription: Liber Magistri Bolffgangi Oschl Hamburgensis. This connects the book with 16th C. Hamburg and deacon Wolfgang Oschl, known from external documentary sources. 

Persons and Institutions The State Library of NSW bought it from an Italian bookseller, Renzo Rizzi, in 1965, the prior history of the host volume is otherwise unknown.

The codex discissus, or lost parent codex, of which these leaves were part, may have been s. XIII French copy of the Organon (logica uetus), or some other handbook or compilation of logic added to throughout the century. The texts come from a learned background, perhaps a university, or other scholastic context, although neither text nor script seems to contain any definite datable or localisable features. The leaves contain no obvious indications of their later history, until they turned up in the bindings of a late 15th. C German book. 

Host Volume

Title Boethius: De consolatione philosophiae. Comm: Pseudo- Thomas Aquinas. Add: Compendiosa consolationis resumptio
Date of Origin/Publication 6 Mar. 1491
Place of Origin/Publication Strassburg
Shelfmark Sydney, Mitchell Library, SC/INC/037
Persons Attrib. [Johann Prüss]

The boards are beech, with tanned leather spine; evidence of straps from the rear board to clasps. All that says ‘continental’, as one would expect of probably a German, or perhaps French, rather less Italian, binding,