Queen Katherine Parr: Prayers or Meditations (1545)

“She was the first queen of England to write and publish her own books and to become a recognized author during her lifetime and the first Englishwoman to publish a work of prose in the sixteenth century.” (Susan James, “Catherine Parr: Henry VIII’s Last Love”, 2010, pg 12)

“The first edition of Queen Katherine Parr’s Prayers or Meditations appeared on June 2, 1545, under the title Prayers stirryng the mynd vnto heauenlye medytacions. This volume reprinted the two non-Biblical prayers—one for King Henry, the other for men to say going into battle—that concluded her translation Psalms or Prayers, published a year earlier. A second edition with the same contents, bearing the same date, carried the title Prayers or meditacions, wherin the mynde is styrred paciently to suffre all afflictions here. The definitive version (the third edition) appeared on November 6, 1545, under the title PRAYERS OR Medytacions, wherein the mynd is stirred, paciently to suffre all afflictions here, to set at nought the vayne prosperitee of this worlde, and alwaie to longe for the everlastynge felicitee: Collected out of holy wookes by the most vertuous and graciouse Princesse Katherine quene of Englande, Fraunce, and Irelande.1 This volume concluded with four prayers that may well be Queen Katherine’s compositions, the latter of the two just mentioned and three others that gradate from a public to a private perspective: “A devout prayer to be daily said,” “Another prayer,” and “A devout prayer.” The first two editions, identical except for their titles, and the third, definitive one rapidly gained popularity with English readers, who often knew the work as “The Queen’s Prayers.” Thirteen editions appeared before the end of the sixteenth century.” (Parr, Katherine, and Janel Mueller (ed.). “Introduction to Prayers or Meditations (1545).” In Katherine Parr: Complete Works and Correspondence. Edited by Janel Mueller (ed.).University of Chicago Press, 2011. Chicago Scholarship Online, 2013. https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226647265.003.0009.)

Folger Shakespeare Library PDI Record: — Call Number (PDI): STC 4824a Creator (PDI): Catharine Parr, Queen, consort of Henry VIII, King of England, 1512-1548. Title (PDI): [Prayers stirryng the mind unto heavenlye medytacions] Created or Published (PDI): [1550] Physical Description (PDI): title page Image Root File (PDI): 17990 Image Type (PDI): FSL collection Image Record ID (PDI): 18050 MARC Bib 001 (PDI): 165567 Marc Holdings 001 (PDI): 159718 Hamnet Record: — Creator (Hamnet): Catharine Parr, Queen, consort of Henry VIII, King of England, 1512-1548. Uniform Title (Hamnet): Prayers stirryng the mind unto heavenlye medytacions Title (Hamnet): Praiers Title (Hamnet): Prayers or meditacions, wherein the minde is stirred, paciently to suffre all afflictions here, to set at nought the vayne prosperitee of this worlde, and alway to longe for the euerlastinge felicitee: collected out of holy workes by the most vertuous and gracious princesse Katherine Queene of England, Fraunce, and Ireland. Place of Creation or Publ. (Hamnet): [London : Creator or Publisher (Hamnet): W. Powell?, Date of Creation or Publ. (Hamnet): ca. 1550] Physical Description (Hamnet): [62] p. ; 8⁰. Folger Holdings Notes (Hamnet): HH48/23. Brown goatskin binding, signed by W. Pratt. Imperfect: leaves D2-3 and all after D5 lacking; D2-3 and D6-7 supplied in pen facsimile. Pencilled bibliographical note of Bernard Quaritch. Provenance: Stainforth bookplate; Francis J. Stainforth – Harmsworth copy Notes (Hamnet): An edition of: Prayers stirryng the mind unto heavenlye medytacions. Notes (Hamnet): D2r has an initial ‘O’ with a bird. Notes (Hamnet): Formerly STC 4821. Notes (Hamnet): Identified as STC 4821 on UMI microfilm, reel 678. Notes (Hamnet): Printer’s name and publication date conjectured by STC. Notes (Hamnet): Running title reads: Praiers. Notes (Hamnet): Signatures: A-D⁸ (-D8). Notes (Hamnet): This edition has a prayer for King Edward towards the end. Citations (Hamnet): ESTC (RLIN) S114675 Citations (Hamnet): STC (2nd ed.), 4824a Subject (Hamnet): Prayers — Early works to 1800. Associated Name (Hamnet): Harmsworth, R. Leicester Sir, (Robert Leicester), 1870-1937, former owner. Call Number (Hamnet): STC 4824a STC 4824a, title page not for reproduction without written permission. Folger Shakespeare Library 201 East Capitol Street, SE Washington, DC 20003