- [13 cent., second ½] (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
[21 ff.] paginated i-iv, 1-38 : Parchment ; 160-170 x 127-129 mm. (irregular dimensions, based on measurements taken when the volume was in an unbound state), written space 120-125 x 95 mm.
Originally kept unbound in quires, all quires having ties of twisted parchment or leather. Quires 1-3 seem to have been stabbed together (and stitched perhaps between limp covers). Bound for Robert Vaughan in London no later than 1660, using sprinkled calf covers over pasteboard, tooled with double blind fillet (similar to Peniarth MSS 30, 35 and 109). The manuscript was rebound by Julian Thomas in quarter alum-tawed pigskin over plain bevelled oak boards, at NLW in 1986. Robert Vaughan's seventeenth-century covers were retained separately. Parchment tackets and fragments of thread removed from the manuscript in 1986 are retained in a compartmentalised polyester envelope inside the cover of the box which contains the manuscript.
Name of creator
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
Content and structure area
Scope and content
The manuscript was written by two scribes: scribe A (pp. 1.1-23.5, 25.1-30.11) and scribe B (pp. 23.6-24.21, 30.12-38.22). The hand of scribe B is also responsible for Peniarth MS 14, pp. 1-44 and Peniarth MS 17; see Ingo Mittendorf, 'Sprachliche und orthographische Besonderheiten eines mittelkymrischen Textes aus dem 13. Jahrhundert (Gwyrthyeu e Wynvydedic Veir)', in Akten des Zweiten Deutschen Keltologen-Symposiums, ed. S. Zimmer, R. Ködderitzsch and A. Wigger, Buchreihe der Zeitschrift für celtische Philologie, 17 (Tübingen, 1999), p. 129. Daniel Huws suggests the Cistercian abbey of Aberconwy as a likely location of the scriptorium; see Medieval Welsh Manuscripts (Cardiff and Aberystwyth, 2000), 75.
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling
Item: 1.1. Action: Conserved, rebound and housed. Manuscript disbound: the leaves flattened, cleaned, and attached to new covers, and the whole retained in a new box. Date: 1986. Site of action: The National Library of Wales. Action agent: Julian Thomas. Status: Broken back, cockled leaves and fragile edges of leaves. Institution: WlAbNL.
Item: 1.2. Action: Condition reviewed. Date: 20110218. Site of action: Cardiff Central Library. Action agent: Julian Thomas. Status: Slight yellowing and grey soiling of the surface of the alum-tawed pigskin surrounding the central area of the spine caused by the volume being handled. Slight cockling of the calfskin endpapers has occurred at their foredges, and cockling to the foredge of f. 5. Small break on f. 7, running parallel to the foredge, resulting in a piece almost falling off. Institution: WlAbNL.
Item: 1.3. Action: Digitized. Date: 20110501. Institution: WlAbNL.
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use area
Conditions governing access
Conditions governing reproduction
Language of material
Script of material
Language and script notes
Physical characteristics and technical requirements
Allied materials area
Existence and location of originals
Existence and location of copies
J. Gwenogvryn Evans, Facsimile & Text of the Book of Aneirin (Pwllheli, 1908) [monochrome facsimile]; Daniel Huws (ed.), Llyfr Aneirin: a facsimile (Cardiff & Aberystwyth, 1989) [colour facsimile].
Two colour facsimile copies were created at NLW in August 2011 for Cardiff Council Library Services.
Online version available on the Library’s website: https://www.llgc.org.uk/discover/digital-gallery/manuscripts/the-middle-ages/book-of-aneirin/ (viewed April 2016)
Related units of description
Virtua system control number
Place access points
Name access points
- Aneirin. (Creator)
- Aberconwy Abbey (Conwy, Wales) -- History. (Subject)
- Gwilym Tew, active 1460-1480, former owner (Subject)
- Dafydd Nanmor, active 1450-1490, former owner. (Subject)
- Vaughan, Robert, 1592-1667, former owner. (Subject)
- Jones, Theophilus, 1759-1812, former owner. (Subject)
- Price, Thomas, 1787-1848, former owner. (Subject)
- Phillipps, Thomas, Sir, 1792-1872, former owner. (Subject)
Description control area
Rules and/or conventions used
Level of detail
Dates of creation revision deletion