The Cooke Manuscript



Next to the Regius the oldest manuscript is that known as the Cooke. It was published by R. Spencer, London, 1861 and was edited by Mr. Matthew Cooke, hence the name. In the British Museum’s catalogue it is listed as “Additional M.S. 23,198”, and has been dated by Hughan at 1450 or thereabouts, an estimate in which most of the specialists have concurred. Dr. Begemann believed the document to have been “compiled and written in the southeastern portion of the western Midlands, say, in Gloucestershire or Oxfordshire, possibly also in southeast Worcestershire or southwest Warwickshire. The ‘Book of Charges’ which forms the second part of the document is certainly of the 14th century, the historical or first part, of quite the beginning of the 15th.” (A.Q.C. IX, page 18)The Cooke MS. was most certainly in the hands of Mr. George Payne, when in his second term as Grand Master in 1720 he compiled the “General Regulations”, and which Anderson included in his own version of the “Constitutions” published in 1723. Anderson himself evidently made use of lines 901-960 of the MS.



ISBN 9781674807201
Pages 95
Width 5.5 in
Height 8.5 in