by William Caxton. This edition printed ca.1869 (Griffin & Farrar) is a facsimile of the original 1491 edition consisting of 41 pages of lithographically reproduced pages. Bound in full vellum in almost an amateurish way with spine and covers all bound with individual pieces of vellum, gives this thin octavo an appealing historic appearance commensurate with the contents. Notation of XV OES on upper spine and the year 1490 on the foot of the spine in ink.
"For those unfamiliar with The Fifteen Oes, the editors have a comprehensive introduction. The "Oes" refer to the start of fifteen small prayers, each focused on Christ's Passion with particular emphases on his wounds. Each of the prayers begins with an address to Jesus, such as "O Ihesu, endles swetnes of louyng soules" [O Jesu, endless sweetness of loving souls] and [End Page 258] "O blessis Ihesu, maker of al the worlde" [O blessed Jesu, maker of all the world] (1). Originally written in Latin, this prayer cycle had relatively wide circulation probably due to its "theologically dubious" promises to release fifteen souls from purgatory, convert fifteen sinners, and keep fifteen Christian men in a good state (x)."