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Medieval and Early Modern Manuscripts from the Folger Shakespeare Library at Penn (2021–2023)

Penn Libraries has digitized a collection of 29 manuscripts from the Folger Shakespeare Library, and the physical copies will be stored in the Kislak Center from 2021 to 2023.

Signature of “Rachell Paule” from a copy of Shakespeare's First Folio

Collection Overview

Between late 2021 and 2023, during the renovation of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., a selection of 29 manuscripts from the Folger are on deposit at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries’ Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts in Philadelphia. During this period, these items will be digitized, added to the OPenn online repository, and made available to members of the public for in-person research consultation. We welcome individuals from the Penn and Folger communities, and also those who do not currently have affiliations with either institution.

Accordion List

As of August 1, 2022, all items have been digitized and made available on OPenn:

Researchers on site in Philadelphia can consult the Folger manuscripts in the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts reading room by appointment. Researchers will be required to have registered both as Kislak Center Special Collections researchers and as Folger Shakespeare Library patrons. 

If you do not currently have a Kislak Center Special Collections researcher account at Penn, please follow this link:

If you are not currently registered at the Folger, please follow this link to register prior to requesting a consultation at Penn:

Once you are registered as a Folger Library patron and as a Special Collections researcher at Penn, please email with your specific requested item call number(s) and your Folger ID number. Please indicate your preferred date and time of visit, with at least 48 hours or 2 business days notice (preferably longer).

Once Penn Libraries staff have verified your credentials with the Folger Library, you will receive an appointment confirmation by email.

For specific research questions pertaining to the Folger manuscripts (questions, requests for further information, preliminary photographs, etc...), please email Nicholas Herman.

Below is a list of the items from the Folger that will be on deposit at the Kislak Center. Click on the call number link for the relevant record from the Folger’s online catalogue. Click the link in the Title/description column for the item’s record in OPenn.

Call number(s)  Title/description  Dimensions 
V.a.102  Latinae linguae elegantiarum compendium ... [etc.] [manuscript], ca. 1455.  44 leaves : coats of arms ; 230 x 145 mm 
V.a.106  Ad Herennium rhetorica [manuscript], 15th century / Marcii Tullii Ciceronis.  114 leaves ; 115 x 85 mm 
V.a.107  Phaedrum ... [etc.] [manuscript], ca. 1460.  48 leaves ; 185 x 125 mm 
V.a.108  Satyrae ... [etc.] [manuscript], ca. 15th century.  102 leaves ; 205 x 155 mm 
V.a.111  Vita Alexandri Magni, libri 3-10 [manuscript], 14th or 15th century.  166 leaves ; 235 x 160 mm 
V.a.112  De officiis ... [etc.] [manuscript], 15th century.  121 leaves ; 230 x 162 mm 
V.a.113  Super historiam Ihierosolymitanam ... [etc.] [manuscript], ca. 1420.  213 leaves ; 215 x 145 mm 
V.a.114  Satyrae [manuscript], ca. 15th century / D. Junii Juvena.  103 leaves ; 23 x 16 cm 
V.a.167  On the art of speaking ... [etc.] [manuscript], ca. 1450.  8 leaves ; 205 x 135 mm 
V.a.228  Hore beate Marie virginis secundum usum Sarum [manuscript], ca. 1500.  [2], 116 leaves : illuminations ; 199 x 143 mm 
V.b.236  The book called Handelyng off synne, 1303 [manuscript], copy of ca. 1400.  92 leaves ; 374 x 264 mm 
V.a.256  A collection of statutes of the realm [manuscript], compiled ca. 1325.  214 leaves : col. ill. ; 123 x 82 mm 
V.a.257  Liber Sancti Effrem ... [etc.] [manuscript], compiled ca. 1425.  66 leaves ; 225 x 150 mm 
V.a.543  Cultus sanctor [manuscript], 1381.  155 leaves ; 133 x 105 mm 
V.a.76  Gesta Romanorum [manuscript], ca. 1450.  52 leaves ; 225 x 155 mm 
V.a.77  Gesta inclita Tyrii Appollonii regis [manuscript], ca. 1450.  20 leaves : 205 x 140 mm 
V.a.82  Elegiae [manuscript], compiled ca. 1500.  54 leaves : ill. ; 140 x 100 mm 
V.a.83  De arte amandi [manuscript], ca. 1400? / Ovidius.  51 leaves ; 240 x 175 mm 
V.a.84  Appollogeticus ... [etc.] [manuscript], 1504.  70 leaves ; 210 x 140 mm 
V.a.88  Selected works of Cicero [manuscript], ca. 1465.  156 leaves : illuminations ; 235 x 165 mm + 19th century binding with bookplates. 
V.b.106  Chronicle of England, known as The Brut [manuscript], ca. 1440.  92 leaves ; 370 x 276 mm 
V.b.29  De confessione amantis [manuscript], ca. mid-15th century.  xii, 350 p. ; 388 x 284 mm 
V.b.31  Ethimologiarum [manuscript], 13th century / secundum Isydori episcopi Hispalensis.  205 leaves ; 285 x 185 mm 
V.b.32  Physica ... [etc.] [manuscript], ca. 1300?  354 leaves ; 295 x 230 mm 
X.d.506 (1)  Decretals of Gregory IX (fragment) [manuscript], ca. 1250.  2 leaves ; 324-328 x 230-236 mm 
V.b.40  De vita XII Caesarum [manuscript], ca. 1470? / C. Suetonii Tranquilli.  107 leaves ; 285 x 210 mm 
V.b.42  Commentary on the Decretals of Pope Gregory IX [manuscript], ca. 1475?  597 leaves ; 300 x 223 mm 
X.d.506 (2)  Decretals of Gregory IX (fragment) [manuscript], ca. 1250.  2 leaves ; 324-328 x 230-236 mm 
X.d.512  Decretum (fragment) [manuscript], ca. 1250.  1 leaf ; 176-183 x 278-288 mm 




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