RepositoryLambeth Palace Library
Alt Ref NoMS 576
DescriptionAliquot Capita Alcorani, partim Arabicè, partim Turcicè scripta, cum Precibus.
This description is found in H. J. Todd's printed catalogue of 1812, and is taken from the earlier manuscript catalogue of 1720 by David Wilkins (LR/F/40, f. 45r).
An inscription in MS. 576 in the hand of William Sancroft, Archbishop of Canterbury, offers an earlier description, seemingly provided by Edmund Castell (1606-1685): 'Nomen posessoris qui habitavit Gallipoli ... Liber est sine titulo; partim Arabice partim Turcice scriptus: De precibus et amuletis ut sint prosperi adhibendis. Dr. Castell'.
LanguageArabic and Turkish.
FindingAidsCatalogue description based on H.J Todd, 'A catalogue of the archiepiscopal manuscripts in the library at Lambeth Palace' (1812). Details of provenance added by Richard Palmer, 2011.
PhysicalDescriptionOriental leather binding, decorated, with fold-over flap, 142 x 95 mm.
Paper leaves.
CustodialHistoryOwnership inscription of 'W. Cant' [William Sancroft, Archbishop of Canterbury 1678-91], with a further inscription by Sancroft indicating that it was given to him by John St. John in 1679: 'donum Johannis de Johanne Armigeri 1679'.

John St. John (c.1655-1705) presented Arabic manuscripts to William Sancroft, Archbishop of Canterbury, in 1679 (MSS. 573, 574, 576, 576b) and in 1680 (MSS. 572, 575). Another Arabic manuscript owned by John St. John in 1680 (Bodleian Library, Oriental MS. 103) was probably also a gift to Sancroft since it was alongside Sancroft's papers in the Tanner manuscripts (formerly Tanner MS. 384). A further manuscript appears to have been given to Sancroft by St. John in 1681 (see the letter of presentation, Tanner MS. 36, p. 175). For St. John's letters offering Arabic manuscripts to Sancroft 12 July 1679, and presenting oriental books 2 October 1680, see Tanner MSS. 38, p. 54 and 37, p. 183.
These gifts were made in association with St. John's efforts to make a career in Doctors' Commons. He was refused admission in January 1679 since he had no acceptable degree (Tanner MS. 39, p. 169). Sancroft awarded him a Lambeth Doctorate of Civil Law and ordered his admittance as an advocate in January 1681 (Faculty Office, F II/21/84a-b; Vicar General VB 1/4, f. 135r; the documentation claims that he already had a Doctorate of Law from Leiden). However the judges and advocates of the Court of Arches refused to accept his Lambeth degree or to practise with him; after a few years he was forced to abandon the profession. See G.B. Squibb, 'Doctors' Commons' (Oxford, 1977), p. 41.
St. John took holy orders in 1698 and served as Rector of Yelden (also known as Yielden), Bedfordshire 1698-1705 (Vicar General VB 1/4, f. 571r, licence to take orders; St. John is described here as aged above 40 and formerly of Exeter College Oxford). He was presented to Yelden by Paulet St. John, 3rd Earl of Bolinbroke and 7th Baron St. John of Bletso (d. 1711). John St. John was probably a member of his family. He died aged 50 on 15 May 1705; see John Nichols, 'Literary anecdotes of the eighteenth century' 9 vols (London, 1812-15), vol. 1, p. 241.
RelatedMaterialA stray fragment of an Arabic manuscript, a gathering of 8 leaves ( MS. 1167 ff. 98-105) has pages of identical size and matching format, written within a frame ruled in red ink.
See also Custodial history field
PublnNotePalmer, Richard, 'Sancroft Versus Sheldon: A Case of Books' in The Library (18:3), 2017 [Lambeth Palace Library Z1008.[B5]]

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32Sancroft; William (1617-1693); Archbishop of Canterbury1617-1693
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