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Mary Magdalene and Her Sister Martha

An Edition and Translation of the Medieval Welsh Lives

Jane Cartwright

Publication Year: 2013

Mary Magdalene and Her Sister Martha: An Edition and Translation of the Medieval Welsh Lives provides scholarly editions and English translations of the medieval Welsh versions of the legends of Mary Magdalene and Martha. Described by Victor Saxer as medieval best sellers, these hagiographical tales, which described how Mary Magdalene and her sister Martha survived a perilous sea voyage from the holy land and evangelized Provence, were available in many different Latin and vernacular versions and circulated widely in the medieval West. The texts were translated or adapted into Middle Welsh some time before the mid-fourteenth century: the Middle Welsh Life of Mary Magdalene is extant in thirteen manuscripts and the Middle Welsh Life of Martha is preserved in eight of the same manuscripts. Jane Cartwright makes the Middle Welsh versions available to an international audience for the first time and provides a detailed study of the Welsh manuscripts that contain the texts, a comparison between the different manuscripts versions and a discussion of the wider hagiographical context of the texts in Wales. The volume includes transcriptions, editions and translations of the two Lives based on the oldest most complete extant versions found in the Red Book of Talgarth c. 1400, as well as an additional section of text describing Mary Magdalene’s life before Christ’s crucifixion from the fifteenth-century Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales, Peniarth MS 27ii. The edition is accompanied by a comprehensive glossary which provides translations of all medieval Welsh words that occur in the texts, an analysis of the development and transmission of the legends, as well as a discussion of the relevance and popularity of these two female saints in late medieval Wales: medieval Welsh poetry, church dedications, and holy wells are also considered.

Published by: The Catholic University of America Press


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pp. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright, Dediccation

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pp. 2-7


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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-xii

...funding a period of study leave in order for me to undertake this proj-ect. I would like to thank Daniel Huws for sending me extracts from his A Repertory of Welsh Manuscripts and Scribes prior to the publica-tion of his seminal work and also checking the final draft of the dis-cussion on the manuscripts. Thanks also to Diana Luft for comment-...

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1. Introduction

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pp. 1-76

...size that has as many saints in it as there used to be among the Welsh. . . . And yet, we do not know a tenth of the saints? names in The recusant author of the first book to be published in Wales, Y Drych Kristnogawl, was keen to emphasize the large number of saints that were once venerated in Wales. Given that it is claimed that part of the ...

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2. Transcription

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pp. 77-89

Additional section found at the beginning of the Life in Aberystwyth, Na-arglwy? iesu grist a gynhiado? iddi ras a thrvgare? a meddevain21. In this manuscript there are two dif_ferent kinds of : in this particular section when occurs as the first letter or in the middle of words it curves to the left and the scribe uses

is required; at the end of a word, rather than use
the ...

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3. Edition

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pp. 90-100

Additional section found at the beginning of the Life in Aberystwyth, Na-i Vartha i verch. A Magdela i gasdell, a chwbl o?r arglwyddieth honno, a roys i Vair Vadlen i verch, ac o?r kasdell hwnnw i kavas mwyaf yn ore i bvchedd a f_fan weles yr Iesv yn amser ac yn dda gantho ef, ef a roys ras i Vair Vadlen i gydnabod a hi e hvn, ac yna ...

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4. Translation

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pp. 101-112

Additional section found at the beginning of the Life in Aberystwyth, the women, next to Mary his mother, and for this reason all Christians should honor God and Mary Magdalene. She was the first in the age of grace to repent and undertake penance for her transgressions. And the Lord Jesus Christ granted her pardon, mercy, and forgiveness of ...


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pp. 113-134


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pp. 135-140


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pp. 141-146

Production Notes

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pp. 160-160

E-ISBN-13: 9780813221892
E-ISBN-10: 0813221897
Print-ISBN-13: 9780813221885
Print-ISBN-10: 0813221889

Page Count: 159
Publication Year: 2013

OCLC Number: 868223134
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Mary Magdalene and Her Sister Martha