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Anonymous Interpolations in Ælfric's Lives of Saints Cover

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Anonymous Interpolations in Ælfric's Lives of Saints

edited by Robin Norris

We know almost nothing about the anonymous authors of Euphrosyne, Eustace, Mary of Egypt, and The Seven Sleepers, except that each was interested in reading, translating, and transmitting one of these four texts. Each of the four essays in this collection explores what those reasons might have been. None of the four contributors uses Ælfric as the exclusive lens for analysis, and each piece adopts a different theoretical or methodological approach to the text in question; in the process, the four anonymous texts are put into conversation with the Gospels, Freudian psychoanalysis, a fragmentary, fire-damaged manuscript, Old English homilies, and a novel published in 2006. In offering four new essays on the anonymous interpolations in Ælfric's Lives of Saints that take four very different approaches to the texts in question, we hope to open additional lines of inquiry into the lives of the se saints and to promote new scholarship on the anonymous hagiography of Anglo-Saxon England.

Ars musice Cover

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Ars musice

Johannes de Grocheio

Ars musice, composed in Paris in the late thirteenth century, reflects Johannes de Grocheio's awareness of the complexity of the task of describing music. . . . Grocheio is aware of the enormous range of types of music performed in different ways in different places. How can he impose order on this enormous subject matter. He decided to resolve this question by structuring his discussion around the practice of music that he observed in the city of Paris, organized into three main "branches": music of the people (musica vulgalis), composite or regular, "which they call measured music" (musica mensurata), and ecclesiastical music (musica ecclesiastica), which he claims derives from the other two. The originality of Grocheio's treatise has attracted considerable scholarly interest. It has long been recognized as a unique source of information about musical life in Paris. Through his treatise, Grocheio enables a modern reader to become aware of the complex auditory environment of that city in the late thirteenth century as well as of its intellectual vitality at a particularly vibrant moment in its history.

Comparative Perspectives on History and Historians Cover

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Comparative Perspectives on History and Historians

Essays in Memory of Bryce Lyon (1920-2007)

edited by David Nicholas, Bernard S. Bachrach, and James M. Murray

The book features a section of appreciations of Bryce Lyon followed by three sections on the major areas on which Lyon's research concentrated: the legacy of Henri Pirenne, constitutional and legal history of England and the Continent, and the economic history of the Low Countries. Original essays by Bernard S. Bachrach, David S. Bachrach, Jan Dumolyn, Caroline Dunn, Jelle Haemers, John H. A. Munro, James M. Murray, Anthony Musson, David Nicholas, W. Mark Ormrod, Walter Prevenier, Jeff Rider, Don C. Skemer, and Marci Sortor deepen our understanding of Lyon's career and siginificance and further our knowledge of the areas in which he worked.

Magistra Doctissima Cover

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Magistra Doctissima

Essays in Honor of Bonnie Wheeler

Edited by Dorsey Armstrong, Ann W. Astell, and Howell Chickering

The editors of this volume use its title to honor Bonnie Wheeler for her many scholarly achievements and to celebrate her wide-ranging contributions to medieval studies in the United States. A section on Old and Middle English literature includes essays by Toshiyuki Takamiya on a Japanese woman writer’s engagement with Grendel’s Mother, Jeffrey Jerome Cohen on Chaucer’s Britishness, Lorraine Kochanske Stock on the “hag” in The Wife of Bath’s Tale, and the late Stephen Stallcup on Arcite’s fatal mishap. The second section, “Arthuriana Then and Now,” features essays by the late Maurice Keen on Arthurian bones and English kings, Geoffrey Ashe on The Prophecies of Merlin, D. Thomas Hanks Jr. on Malory’s prose style, Edward Donald Kennedy on Lancelot of the Laik, Alan Lupack on the cultural resonance of the “strength of ten” motif, and Donald L. Hoffman and Elizabeth S. Sklar on the continued presence of the Holy Grail on the World Wide Web. In the third section, “Joan of Arc Then and Now,” Kelly R. DeVries critiques Joan’s unsuccessful attack on Paris, Kevin Harty reflects on her afterlife on the screen during World War I, and Nadia Margolis explores her presence on stage. The fourth section, “Nuns and Spirituality,” includes Giles Constable’s edition and translation of a hitherto unpublished letter from the abbot of Clairvaux to the abbess of Fontevrault, William Chester Jordan’s study of the precarious conditions of life at a thirteenth-century Cistercian nunnery, Anne Bagnall Yardley’s essay on Mary Magdalene’s musical presence in the Holy Thursday liturgy of Barking Abbey in the late Middle Ages, and Annemarie Weyl Carr’s consideration of El Greco’s Espolio. The final section, “Royal Women,” features an examination by William W. Clark of the personal seal of Constance of France and an edition by Elizabeth A. R. Brown of two previously unpublished bequests by Jeanne d’Évreux to the abbey of Saint-Denis.

Malory and Christianity Cover

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Malory and Christianity

Essays on Sir Thomas Malory's Morte Darthur


As Hanks and Jesmok note in their introduction, “pursuing opponents and pursuing love move the Morte’s narrative, but the work’s richness comes from its romance and tragic elements: the human quest for maturity and fulfillment and those uncontrollable forces that undermine the quest and destroy the dream. Malory’s use of myth and magic to explore these themes has received extensive scholarly attention, but his views on and thematic use of Christianity have long needed a closer look.” The collection features essays by the editors and by Corey Olsen, Sue Ellen Holbrook, Karen Cherewatuk, Dorsey Armstrong, Fiona Tolhurst, K. S. Whetter, and Felicia Nimue Ackerman.

Renaissance Retrospections Cover

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Renaissance Retrospections

Tudor Views of the Middle Ages


The Middle Ages provided an important, if complex, set of literary and historiographic models for early modern authors, although the early modern authors responded to the alien political, religious, and cultural landscape of medieval England through their more present ideological concerns. From Shakespeare’s manipulation of his medieval source material to Protestant responses to medieval Catholicism, this collection of essays explores the ways that early modern English writers responded to the medieval English literary and historical record, dealing with topics such as historiographic bias, print history, intertextuality, and cultural history. The volume is an important participant in the ongoing reshaping of professional ideas about periodization and cultural identity.

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Saints at Play

The Performance Features of French Hagiographic Mystery Plays

Vicki L. Hamblin

In the introduction to Saints at Play, Hamblin notes that "this approach is intended to strengthen a comparative analysis of relatively similar texts created within a particular cultural setting. [The plays'] somewhat parallel narratives and performative structures facilitate their comparison as performance remnants. . . . To that end, the first three chapters will investigate the cultural contexts in which these plays were produced and performed, as well as the cultural content that spoke to and for the communities that created them. In two subsequent chapters, the performance features of these remnants, verbal and nonverbal, textual and supratextual, will be compared in search of evidence of a collective performance history. Anomalies and questions regarding these texts as reminiscent of a performative past will be posited and conclusions drawn as to how these texts expressed contemporary social perspectives at both localized and generic levels.


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