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Posts Tagged ‘Reformation’

Scotland’s last saint : St John Ogilvie

Martyr in ScotlandThe 10th of  March is celebrated as the feast day of St John Ogilvie in the Roman Catholic Church. The only post-Reformation saint from Scotland.  John Ogilvie (1578/9–1615) was born and brought up as a Calvinist in Strathisla, Banffshire. After studying at the Protestant University of Helmstedt in northern Germany, he became a Catholic, and after further study took his vows as a Jesuit priest in 1601. Ogilvie volunteered for missionary work in Scotland, and arrived in Leith in 1613. Ogilvie’s work was to administer the sacraments to Catholics, bring doubters back to the fold, and seek new converts throughout  Edinburgh, Glasgow and Renfrewshire. It On 4 October 1614 he was betrayed and captured while walking in a Glasgow street. The authorities’ narrative of his trial and execution was printed as A true relation, of the proceedings against Iohn Ogiluie, a Iesuit … (1615), available  to University of Edinburgh users via Early English Books Online. While other Catholics suffered trial and imprisonment at this time, “Ogilvie was the only Catholic in Scotland ever to be judicially sentenced and executed for his religion” (1).

In the nineteenth century John Ogilvie was rediscovered with the publication of Scottish historical sources, leading to the publication of a number of works on his life. New College Library holds  Jean Ogilvie, ecossais, jesuite : torturé et mis à mort pour la foi  by James Forbes, (Paris : 1901) and Martyr in Scotland : The life & times of John Ogilvie by Thomas Collins (London: 1955). John Ogilvie was beatified in 1929 and canonized in 1976.

(1) Mark Dilworth, ‘Ogilvie, John [St John Ogilvie] (1578/9–1615)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/20586, accessed 28 Feb 2013]

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A prayer for a pudding?

The booke of the common prayer and administracion of the Sacramentes : and other rites and ceremonies of the Churche, after the vse of the Churche of England.1549. New College Library DPL 70

25 November 2012 is traditionally Stir Up Sunday, when cooks plan to make their Christmas puddings so they have time to mature before eating on Christmas Day.

This tradition is linked with the opening words of the collect for the day in the Book of Common Prayer of 1549, which reads  ‘Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord…’ Always read just before Advent, this became remembered as a reminder  to start stirring up the puddings for Christmas.

New College Library holds this copy of the  Book of Common Prayer printed in London in 1549, the year the Book of Common Prayer was adopted by the Church of England.  We can see the exhortation to “Stir up ..” , spoken over 450 years ago in the reign of Edward VI of England, about two thirds of the way down the page.

This book is part of the Dumfries Presbytery Library, currently being catalogued as part of the Funk Cataloguing Projects at New College Library. It bears the signature of Dr John Hutton, who donated the collection of books that form the foundations of the Dumfries Presbytery Library.

New College Library’s earliest Bible

Novum Testamentum Graece, Strassburg 1524. New College Library B.r.316.

This Greek New Testament Novum Testamentum Graece, is the earliest Bible held at New College Library.

It was printed in Strassburg in 1524, and in his preface the printer speaks of this edition as the first fruits of his Strassburg press. Combined with the same printer’s Greek Old Testament of 1526 it  forms a complete Bible, but this New Testament appears to have been first issued separately.

This New Testament was published in Strassburg during the period that Protestant reformer Martin Bucer was active there. Bucer was part of a significant group of reformers including Matthew Zell and Wolfgang Capito, and he corresponded with the theologians Martin Luther and Huldrych Zwingli. During his time in Strassburg he is known to have taught classes on books of the Bible so may have used a Greek Testament like this one.

This copy has a number of manuscript inscriptions testifying to its former ownership and a printed book plate from James Walker, Christ Church. It is likely to have been donated to New College Library in the early years of its foundation. Part of the Early Bibles Collection, it was catalogued as part of the Funk Cataloguing Projects here at New College Library.

With thanks to our Rare Books cataloguer Finlay West for supplying details of this item.