BIOGRAPHICA ET BIBLIOGRAPHICA A FRAGMENT OF THE CLEMENTINE RECOGNITIONS1 MS Powis Castle 21901 in the National Library of Wales is a notebook which once belonged to Owen Vaughan of Llwydiarth, Montgomeryshire, written partly by him and partly by others, probably on his behalf The notebook seems to have been first used, by Owen Vaughan, for notes on quantity in Latin, presumably whilst he was at school in the early 1580s. It was used later, c. 1600-5, mainly for assembling evidence and legal opinions concerning the rights of the Herberts over the barony of Powis, long contested by the Vaughans.2 The parchment cover of the notebook, which survives in a damaged condition, is a bifolium of an earlier MS whose script suggests a date in the middle of the 12th century. A hand of the 18th century has added 'Court Leet Barony of Powys' on the front cover. The fragment has been cut and folded to fit the later MS; the present dimensions, when opened out, are approximately 305 x 215 mm, the written area being 220 x 150 mm. The text, in Latin, is written in two columns of 37 lines each. Textual divisions are denoted by a large initial letter in red. Although another leaf has been pasted over the inside front cover and some portions have been cut away or otherwise damaged, sufficient of the text is still legible for it to be identified as part of Book iii of the Recognitions atrributed to Clement of Rome or the Pseudo-Clementine.3 The Powis fragment corresponds to cols. 1277.8 1278.12 of Migne's edition (probably continuing on to col. 1279 in the section obscured under the endpaper), and cols. 1300.24-1302.32. The Recognitions and the closely related Homilies belong to the corpus of apocryphal literature which grew up around St. Peter. Clement of Rome, anxious to solve his doubts as to the immortality of the soul, sets out to investigate different schools of philosophy. He travels with St. Peter and receives instruction from him. St. Peter's encounter and debate with Simon Magus then occupies the greater part of the text.4 There has been considerable disagreement as to the origins of the Recognitions, whose author is unknown. It survives only in the Latin version, translated from the original Greek by Rufinius of Aquileia (d. 410 AD)5 who added his own preface, dedicating the work to Bishop Gaudentius. Dates of composition ranging from the 1st to 4th centuries have been suggested6 but most scholars have tentatively put forward the 3rd century. The doctrine expressed in the Recognitions is not entirely orthodox and may well reflect the views of a particular heretical sect.8 Manuscripts of the Recognitions are not uncommon and copies survive from the 9th to 17th centuries.9 The text was even translated into the vernacular: a French metrical version, for example, written in England, is preserved in a 13th century MS at Trinity College, Cambridge (Western MS 622)10. However, although about a dozen MSS survive in collections in Great Britain, Clement of Rome does not seem to have been popular in the monastic libraries, unless the survival rate of copies has been especially poor11. Perhaps the dubious orthodoxy of the text was the reason. The present fragment in itself provides no indication of the original provenance of the MS of which it was once a part. However, it may have come from somewhere near where Owen Vaughan received his schooling. It seems likely that this was Shrewsbury, for a boy of this name, 'Arm[igeri] f[ilius] et h[eres]', was enrolled there in November 1581.12 If this Owen was indeed the owner of the notebook, it is tempting to consider that the original MS could have come from one of the local religious houses after the dissolution. Books were certainly purchased by Shrewsbury School from 1578 onwards12 and at least one MS in its collection is known to have belonged formerly to the local Franciscan convent14. Unless further evidence comes to light, however, the exact provenance of the Powis fragment must remain uncertain. CERIDWEN LLOYD-MORGAN Aberystwyth