Cover

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pp. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. 2-7

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

List of Abbreviations

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pp. xi-xii

Genealogy

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pp. xiii-xiv

Map

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pp. xv-xviii

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Introduction

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pp. 1-7

Sometime around 1160, a Norman cleric named Wace began a history of the Norman dukes and kings of En gland at the behest of Henry II of En gland (r. 1154– 89). Wace had come to Henry’s attention after dedicating an earlier work, the Roman de Brut, to Henry’s queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine. Adapting material from various Latin histories, Wace...

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1. Situating the Roman de Rou and Chroniquedes ducs de Normandie

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pp. 8-37

For much of the Middle Ages there was a division between spoken and written language in Western Eu rope. Latin, which had been adopted by the early Christian church, continued to be used as the written language of much of Eu rope and the lingua franca of the Catholic Church long after it had ceased to be spoken as a native tongue. Literacy...

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2. Henry II

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pp. 38-82

Henry fi tzEmpress arrived in En gland in December of 1154 to claim the throne of a kingdom that had been ruled by his mother’s family for almost a century.1 At the age of twenty- one, Henry was already duke of Normandy, duke of Aquitaine, and count of Anjou. His father, Geoffrey the Fair of Anjou, had turned the duchy of Normandy over...

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3. The Roman de Rou

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pp. 83-147

Around 1160, Henry II commissioned Wace, a clerc lisant born on the Norman island of Jersey and living in the Bessin, to produce the first vernacular history of his maternal ancestors, the Norman dukes and kings of England.1 Wace had recently finished another vernacular history, the Roman de Brut. Based on Geoffrey of Monmouth’s...

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4. The Chronique des ducs de Normandie

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pp. 148-206

Sometime around 1174, Henry II transferred the commission for a history of his Norman ancestors from Wace to Benoît de Sainte- Maure.1 Obviously dissatisfied with the history that Wace had taken almost fifteen years to produce, yet equally unwilling to abandon the project, Henry appears to have searched for a more amenable author. In...

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Conclusion

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pp. 207-216

Since there were already perfectly good Latin histories of his Norman ancestors that would have served Henry II’s purposes (Robert de Torigny’s F redaction of the Gesta Normannorum ducum would have done an excellent job), and neither Wace nor Benoît significantly extended the material covered by their Latin sources, Henry II must...

Bibliography

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pp. 217-240

Index

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pp. 241-252