Here begynneth the legende named in latyn legenda aurea that is to saye in Englysshe the golden legende. For lyke as passeth golde in valewe all other metallys. So this legende excelleth all other bookes.

Accession number: 
PML 739
Jacobus, de Voragine, approximately 1229-1298.
Westmynster : by me Wynkyn de Worde, viii. daye of Janeuer the yere of oure lorde thousande CCCClxxxxviii [8 January 1498].
[1], lii, [5]; Folio primo-Folio CCClxxxxviii leaves : illustrations (woodcuts) ; 30 cm (fol.)
Credit Line: 
Purchased with the Bennett collection, 1902.

Title from half-title page, leaf [Hh]1r.
Imprint from colophon, leaf dd6r: Thus endeth the legende named in latyn legenda aurea that is to say in englysshe the golde[n] legende. For lyke as golde passeth all other metalles, wherin ben conteyned all the hyghe and grete festes of oure lord. The festys of oure blessyd lady, The lyues passyo[n]s and myracles of many other sayntes hystoryes and actes, as all alonge here afore is made mencion, whyche werke I dyde accomplysshe and fynysshe att Westmynster the viii. daye of Janeuer the yere of oure lorde thousande CCCClxxxxviii. and in the xiii yere of the reynge of kynge Henry the vii. By me Wynkyn de Worde.
Printed in De Worde's types 2:114G, 3:136G, and 5:95G.
Signatures: Aa-Ff⁸ Gg⁶; [Hh]⁴; a-h⁸ i¹⁰ k-z⁸; A-Y aa-bb⁸ cc-dd⁶: 448 leaves.
Paper format: Chancery folio.
PML copy leaf dimensions: 28.7 x 20.2 cm.
PML copy missing 49 leaves: Aa1-Ee7, Gg6, r6, G7, dd1-6, often with blank leaves bound in their place. Partial leaves Ee1, Ff2, and cc5 inlaid, with losses to text, many other leaves with small losses repaired, with losses to text. [Hh]1-4 bound before Ee8 and blank replacement leaves.

Modern full brown goatskin, with gilt centerpiece, over paper boards (30 x 21 cm), sewn on 5 supports by Riviere & Son. Plain paper pastedowns and endleaves; decorative endbands; gilt edges.
Variant Title: 

Golden Legende


Hand decoration: Rubrication not required. Annotations: 16th- and 17th-century marginal notations in at least two hands, including marginal keywords (primarily in quires a-e) and added notes on saints or prayers: in 16th-century hand, on Saint Sebastian (leaf i7r, copying printed text), and in later hands, on Saint Edmond (leaves s6v-7r), and on Saint Brandon (leaf x1v-2r, in Latin); unidentified text, written upside-down from printed text: "[trimmed away] Day / I knew your Merit w[?] Attended too; / To Pay My Visit, And your Person View / To Welcome to the Country, and to Give / Health, If I could to Make your Honour [??] | [trimmed away] After your Death to Pay, Do Not Forget / We [??] you, knew w[ha]t Learning was & [?]ght / [???] the Bleβing After Death Do Right," (leaves S6v-7r).

Richard Bennett (1849-1930), armorial bookplate (front endleaf 1 recto) and purchase notes: No. 61a, 11/1/1900 and price code: lm/-/- (front pastedown); Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), purchased with the Bennett collection, 1902.