University of Chicago Library, Goodspeed Manuscript Collection Ms. 133, New Testament. Gospels (Exoteicho Gospels). Greg. 2396. Trabzon, Turkey (Trebizond), 12th century.


Four gospels in Greek. Ammonian section and Eusebian canon numbers in the margins. Formerly Goodspeed Ms. Grk. 12.

  1. pp. 1-2 Kephalaia of Matthew.
    Colophon: Church of St. John Exoteicho: ανηκει τω ιερω εκκλησια εξοτειχων (p. 1).
  2. pp. 3-110 Matthew. Subscription and stichoi (2,600).
    Note: Blank (pp. 7-18, 23-42, 65-72).
  3. pp. 111-112 Kephalaia of Mark.
  4. pp. 112-176 Mark. Subscription and stichoi (1,500).
    Note: Blank (pp. 133-136).
  5. pp. 189-303 Luke (begins with 2:24 at, ζευγος τρυγονων η δυο...). Subscription and stichoi (2,800).
    Note: Blank (pages 177-188, 245-252, 281-284).
  6. p. 304 Kephalaia of John.
  7. pp. 304-397 John. Subscription and stichoi (2,300).
  8. Flyleaf (back)
    Colophon: Holy God, Holy Powerful One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us. This holy and sacred book was found in the sacred church of Saint John the Forerunner of Exoteicho at Trebizond, an ancient volume with leaves ruined by old age and lost, as appears from the blank leaves which were added in order that the lost part might be written; and it was thus newly bound in the year 1860 of our savior November 6. It is put back in the previously mentioned divine church as its own possession.



Headpieces of blue, gold, and red embellished with floral, foliate, and geometric motifs (pp. 3, 112, 304).


Major initials (25-45 mm) of floral and foliate design in blue, red, and gold, set off from the text. Minor and marginal initials in red ink overlaid with gold.

Physical Description


Parchment and paper. 305 x 235 mm.


Paper inserts, possibly Venetian in origin. Each leaf is watermarked with either a bordered escutcheon bearing a crescent moon with a face in profile (45 x 43 mm), or the monogram B G (20 x 40 mm).

Number of Leaves

201 leaves, of which 165 are parchment, 34 are of paper (18th or 19th century), and 2 are flyleaves contemporary with the manuscript's rebinding of 1860. Flyleaves conjoint with pastedowns.


2 (unpaginated paper flyleaf) + 398 + 2 (unpaginated paper flyleaf). Modern pagination in Arabic numerals in ink 1-398.


May have contained 28 quires of 8 leaves initially, with the exception of the 26th quire of 6 leaves. Estimate of content lost: Eusebian Canon tables I-X, and possibly Eusebius's letter to Carpianus on the gospel canons; 14 leaves of Matthew with portions of the text, 2:14-5:34, 6:29-12:1, 18:9-19:16; 2 leaves of Mark containing 6:35-7:20; 10 leaves of Luke with the text, 1:1-2:24, 12:33-13:11, 20:20-21:16, a headpiece, and major initial.

Quire numbers are found on the first (recto) and last (verso) leaves of each quire (lower margin) from page 3, 1-24 (α-κδ).


Written space 230 x 160 mm (p. 137). Each column is 230 x 70 mm with a space of 20 mm between.


2 columns, 28 lines. Ruling with hard point.


Written in minuscule script in brown ink.

Punctuation includes high and low points, comma, marks of elision and interrogation. Quotation marks in left margin next to each line of quoted text.

Methods of correcting text consist of erasure, insertion of words or letters, dots placed over problematic words, and marginal notation marked with obelus.

Text Divisions

Running titles in red ink overlaid with gold.


Leaves lost, and the remainder trimmed resulting in the loss of some text. Portions of several leaves broken off. Some fading and erasure of script. Random holes. Water stains. Binding loose.

Binding Description

Bound in glazed paper, pale green in color with an embossed floral design, over boards. Spine of black leather. Rebound by an unknown bookbinder 6 November 1860 (colophon, back flyleaf, verso).



The manuscript is dated to the 12th century, and is judged to have been written at or near Trebizond, the present-day Trabzon, Turkey.


Medieval to mid-19th century provenance unknown. In 1884, the manuscript was part of the library of the Church of St. John Exoteicho (undated colophons, p. 1, and back flyleaf, verso). It was seen there by A. I. Papadopoulos-Kerameus (1856-1912), who included a description of it in his catalogue of Trebizond's Greek codices (no. 59).

University of Chicago Libraries bookplate (front pastedown); notation in ink (p. 398); count of parchment and paper leaves in pencil (back flyleaf, recto); Inscription in pencil, St. Jean Prodromos à Trebizond (back pastedown).


Acquired by the University of Chicago from Rudolf M. Riefstahl (New York), November 1929.


  1. A. I. Papadopoulos-Kerameus, "Ελληνικοι κωδικες Τραπεζουντος," Vizantijskij Vremennik 19 (1912 [1915]), no. 59, p. 250.
  2. David O. Voss, "A study of the Isaac, Hyacinthus, and Exoteicho Gospels" (Ph.D. diss., University of Chicago, 1932).
  3. Kenneth W. Clark, A Descriptive Catalogue of Greek New Testament Manuscripts in America (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1937), pp. 241-243.
  4. Harold Rideout Willoughby, Greek rebinding colophons in Chicago manuscripts (Beograd: Institut Kondkov, [1939]), pp. 27-29.
  5. Merrill Mead Parvis, The Story of the Goodspeed Collection ([Chicago]: s.n., 1952), p. 13.
  6. New Testament manuscript traditions. An exhibition based on the Edgar J. Goodspeed Collection of the University of Chicago Library, the Joseph Regenstein Library, January-March, 1973. University of Chicago. Library. Dept. of Special Collections. Exhibition catalogs ([Chicago: s.n., 1973]), 36, no. 29.