Titles are in metallic red in the script and hand of the text. The coloured initials, two or three lines in height, are alternately red, blue and green. They usually have guide-letters, and half of the initial is usually indented to the left.
Modern: Throughout the manuscript. A later hand added corresponding numbers of Latin bible chapters in brown pen.
s. xvi: fols 3v-4v. Latin translation of Alfred's preface. Begins 'Hæc est prefatio (ostendes) quemadmodum S. Gregorius hunc librum fecit quem homines Pastorale nuncupant'. On much whiter parchment.
s. xvi: fols 5r-7r. A continuous interlinear Old English gloss.
s. xvi: Front pastedown and fol. 146v. Underlining in red pencil.
s. xiii: Whole manuscript. Ker mentions 'some faintly pencilled Latin glosses which appear to be of s. xiii'. Other glosses are visible on fols 32r, 35v, 36r, 54r, 54v, 55r, 55v, 56r, 70r, 72r, 87r, 90r, 90v, 104v, 116r, 108r, and so on. Some glosses seem to have been erased: traces of erased pencilled glosses are visible in fols 55r, 64r, 87r, 90r, 90v, 104v, 116r, 108r, and so on. Some glosses in pencil might have been added by a modern hand.
Sixteenth-century binding whose dark brown covers are now attached to a new twentieth-century brown cover. Four bosses on each cover are now missing. The remains of two clasps survive. The back cover has a small pocket which holds the book label.
The manuscript is kept with a monochrome photograph of the back of the sixteenth-century binding boards before the manuscript was rebound. The inside of the back cover had several modern notes both in pen and pencil, and also lines in red pencil. According to a note attached to the photographs, there were old chain marks.
The pocket on the back cover formerly contained a label with the title 'Pastoral: Gregorii ex Versione Aluredi regis saxon'. That label was pasted inside the back cover when the back of the boards were photographed. It was then removed from the back of the board and was pasted on to fol. 3. The label was there when Ker consulted the manuscript for his Catalogue. Now the label is missing, although there is a trace of its having been pasted once.
On the foredge of the book is written 'Gregori Pastorale, Alured R [xxxx] Saxon' in black ink.