In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

REVIEWS chapters on manuscript commentaries, then the chapters might mount some theoretical challenge to, or simply divergence from, the power­ fully totalizing, fixed structures of gender polarity and dynastic imper­ ative. A gesture outward from the trap of hierarchies endlessly sub­ verted but contained occurs in Baswell's own discussion of The House of Fame, where the diverse Babel of the world of tidings is that "from which new art may be made"; the eventual disorganization of the rich array of literary traditions that had provided an embarrassment of riches at the start of the poem proves a liberation, leaving Geffrey "suddenly buoyant" and the poem filled with energy (p. 248). The subversion/ containment model can't do much to account for the new, for change that brings the future, but the poem perhaps can. The Babel of tongues pervades Baswell's account of the explosive variety of versions, forms, and media of antique story after Chaucer, a variety eliciting models of analysis that supplement pairs of cultural binarisms with more compli­ cated models of reader identification-identifications that movingly underwrite Baswell's work on manuscripts. THERESA M. KRIER University of Notre Dame RICHARD BEADLE and A. J. PIPER, eds. New Science Out of Old Books: Studies in Manuscripts and Early Printed Books in Honour ofA. I. Doyle. London: Scalar Press, 1995. Pp. viii, 455. $109.95. This unusually handsome volume with its sixty-nine black-and-white plates is a fitting tribute to Ian Doyle, one of the most learned students of medieval manuscripts in this century and one of the most generous of scholars in sharing that learning with colleagues. This is the second such collection to honor Doyle, the first constituted of essays delivered at the sixth York Manuscripts Conference.1 Both collections reflect the high standard of manuscript studies in England and this country as well as the beneficent effects of Doyle's scholarship in a variety of disciplines. 1 A. J. Minnis, ed., Late-Medieval Religious Texts and Their Transmission: Essays in Honour of A. I. Doyle, York Manuscripts Conferences: Proceedings Series, vol. 3 (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1994). 219 STUDIES IN THE AGE OF CHAUCER The range of subjects treated in these fifteen essays is extraordinarily di­ verse, and I make no pretense of being competent to offer an opinion on many of those topics, but I shall rather attempt in a sentence or two to suggest what readers will find in these pages. The collection begins with "From Flax to Parchment: A Monastic Sermon from Twelfth-Century Durham," by Mary A.and Richard H. Rouse, an edition and translation with introduction and notes.The Rouses refer to biblical commentary traditions to account for apparent disjunctions in the structure of the sermon, which curiously allegorizes both the scribe's writing tools and the linen garment in which he is clothed. Margaret Laing and Angus McIntosh analyze the linguistic features of the two scribes who copied the Poema morale and the Trinity Homilies into Trinity College, Cambridge, MS 335.Using computerized tran­ scriptions which, because of their full lexical and grammatical markup, are more sophisticated than those available for the preparation of the Linguistic Atlas ofLate Mediaeval English, they characterize Scribe A as a careful literatim copyist, Scribe B as a dialect translator, and then pre­ sent the results of their analysis to localize both texts and scribes. Trinity College, Cambridge, MS B. 16.2 is a handsome presentation copy of Wyclif's Latin writings, the most extensive surviving in England of a mixed set of early and late works.Anne Hudson provides an account of the physical structure of the manuscript and summarizes what is known of the nature of its texts and their relations to those in other manuscripts. Done with Hudson's characteristic thoroughness and care, this study, as she warns, in many cases raises rather more oc­ casions for further research than it provides solutions. Malcolm Parkes, in an important and detailed study of the process of authorial rolling revision in the early manuscripts of John Gower's works, rejects G.C.Macaulay's and John Fisher's arguments that the poet's earliest manuscripts were produced in a scriptorium where...