50 Clotaire II., at this time king of Neustria, his capital being Soissons. There is no letter to him among those which had been carried by Augustine. But it appears from this epistle that the missionaries had passed through his dominions and had been well received.
52 This important epistle is given below as published in the Benedictine edition, with notes pointing out its main variations from Bede (H.E. I. 27), and with addition of the Preface, first published by Mansi (Supplem. ad Concil. tom. vi. p. 385 ) from a ms. Codex of the eighth century (Cod. Lucen ). Bede's copy may be regarded as the most authentic, having been brought to him from Rome by Nothelm, a.d. 715-731 (Bede H.E. Praef.). However, he does not give the Preface, which has internal evidence of authenticity. Subsequently to Nothelm's visit to Rome, it would seem that the whole epistle had been mislaid there, not having been kept among the rest of Gregory's letters. For St Boniiface, a.d. 736 (Epist. XL. ad Nothelm.. Episc Cantuar) requests Nothelm to send him a copy of these Questions and Answers from England, saying that no copy of them could at that time be found at Rome. They were, we may conclude, discovered subsequently. Internal evidence, as well as historic probability, supports the superior genuineness of Bede's copy (Cf. Councils, &c., re1ating to Great Britain and Ireland, 0xf , 1871 Vol. III., p.32.) The edition of the Epistle (Cod Luen) above referred to as published by Mansi, though containing several variations, agrees in many respects with that of Bede, and especially in the absence of "the request of Augustine" (obsecratio Augustinei) and "the grant of Gregory" (Concessio Gregorii) after the answer to the ninth question. See note there.
53 In Bede, and Cod. Luc., this question does not appear, what follows as a reply to it being in continuation of the answer to Question I. The form of the beginning of the reply, "Si qui vero sunt clerici," favors it having been so.