University of Chicago Library, Goodspeed Manuscript Collection Ms. 948, Lectionary (Lectionary of St. Menas the Wonder Worker). Greg. l 1964. Cyprus, 12th or 13th century.


Gospel lectionary in Greek. Synaxarion with ecphonetic notation. Formerly Goodspeed Ms. Grk. 46.

  1. [i] Description of the manuscript's history.
  2. fols. 1r-30v Synaxarion. John, Weekday, Saturday, and Sunday Lections.
    Note: Begins with John 1:35-51, Wednesday, Week 1 of Easter, at 1:42, αυτω ο ιησους ειπεν.
  3. fols. 30v-54r Synaxarion. Matthew, Weekday, Saturday, and Sunday Lections.
  4. fols. 54r-74r Synaxarion. Luke, Saturday, and Sunday Lections.
  5. fols. 74r-82r Synaxarion. Great Lent, Saturday and Sunday Lections.
  6. fols. 82r-100v Synaxarion. Holy Week, Monday through Thursday Lections.
  7. fols. 101r-106v Synaxarion. Twelve Lections of the Holy Passions (lacking).
    Note: 1st lection, John 13:31-18:1, end with 17:15 at, αυτους εκ του πο[νηρου].



Headpieces of scrollwork and geometric patterns in red, and red and black (fols. 33v, 54r).


Major initials in red (30-35 mm) set off from text and embellished with foliate and bead motifs.

Physical Description


Parchment. 250 x 185 mm.

Number of Leaves

109 leaves, of which 2 are raised pastedowns of paper, and 1 is a paper leaf containing a description of the manuscript's history.


1 (unfoliated paper pastedown) + 1 (unfoliated paper leaf) + 106 + 1 (unfoliated paper pastedown). Modern foliation in Arabic numerals in pencil 1-106.


15 quires extant, each of 8 leaves with the exception of quire 14 of 6 leaves. Estimate of content lost: leaves 1-3 of quire 1 (before fol. 1); leaves 8-11 of quire 2 (after fol. 7, John 6:14-27, Saturday, Week 2 of Easter. Ends with 6:22 at αλλα μονοι οι μαθη[ται], and begins on fol. 8r with John 5:1-15, 4th Sunday of Easter, with 5:3 at, [ασθε]νουντων τυφλων χωλων ξηρων); unknown number of leaves (after fol. 106). It is assumed the text of the missing leaves would have contained the remainder of the Twelve Lections of the Holy Passions, Heothina lections, and a Menologion.

Quire number present on quire 15 (ιε) only (fol. 104r, upper margin).


Written space 190 x 140 mm (fol. 18r). Each column is 190 x 60 mm with a space of 20 mm between.


2 columns, 25 to 32 lines. Ruling with hard point. Pricking in the outer margins.


Written in minuscule script in dark brown ink.

Punctuation includes middle, double, and triple points, and marks of elision. Quotation marks in left margin next to each line of quoted text.

Corrections to the text include erasure and additions in the margins noted with reference marks.


A number of leaves loose. Typed description of the manuscript's history hinged to margin of broken front leaf. Some insect damage to parchment, paper, wooden boards, and linen cloth. Paint and gesso of the icon on the front board damaged. Loss of back covering, possibly an icon of the Resurrection, leaving exposed cloth. Sewing visible through a missing section of linen over the spine.

Binding Description

Bound in board wrapped in linen.

Front cover: Icon of The Crucifixion of Christ with the Virgin Mary and the Evangelist John at the foot of the cross.



The manuscript is judged to have been written on the island of Cyprus in either the late 12th or early 13th century.


Belonged at one time to the Monastery of Saint Menas the Wonder Worker near Lárnaka, Cyprus (undated, front pastedown, recto). An additional inscription recorded in 1868 notes that the manuscript was from the Convent of Queen Catherine on Cyprus's Mount Olympus, and in that year was presented to Lieutenant Colonel Shervinton by Demetrios Pierides, a Cypriot bank director and antiquarian.

Gifts to the monastery and the death of Mathew, one of its abbots are documented among other undated colophons and notes (front and back inside covers and rectos of raised pastedowns).


Acquired by the University of Chicago from Maggs Bros. (London) in 1941 with funds provided by the Divinity School Library and Friends of the Library.


  1. Maggs Bros. (London, England), Manuscripts, Incunabula, Bibles, Old Histories, Scientific Works Woodcut Books, etc.; Prints and drawings by early masters. (London: Maggs Bros., 1940), 697, p. 7 (no. 13).
  2. C. U. Faye and W. H. Bond, Supplement to the census of medieval and renaissance manuscripts in the United States and Canada. (New York: Bibliographical Society of America, c1962), p. 163.
  3. Merrill Mead Parvis, The Story of the Goodspeed Collection ([Chicago]: s.n., 1952), p. 25.