Charters of Glastonbury Abbey

Overview

Glastonbury Abbey was the wealthiest and most influential monastery in later Anglo-Saxon England. It was a noted centre of scholarship, and claimed ancient origins which were later extravagantly embellished to link the house with such luminaries as St Patrick, St David and King Arthur. The historiographical evidence for Glastonbury is particularly challenging, because the accounts of the monastery's early history were revised and interpolated over centuries, as the legends grew. There are also complications in ...

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Overview

Glastonbury Abbey was the wealthiest and most influential monastery in later Anglo-Saxon England. It was a noted centre of scholarship, and claimed ancient origins which were later extravagantly embellished to link the house with such luminaries as St Patrick, St David and King Arthur. The historiographical evidence for Glastonbury is particularly challenging, because the accounts of the monastery's early history were revised and interpolated over centuries, as the legends grew. There are also complications in the study of its archive: the manuscripts are mostly late and corrupt, and the whole is overshadowed by the contents list of a lost cartulary (the Liber Terrarum), which included many more early charters than now survive. The present volume is the first critical edition of the sixty-one surviving charters from the abbey's pre-Conquest archive, which date from the later seventh century to the reign of Cnut. The texts are edited to a high standard, with comprehensive commentaries that include translation and elucidation of the Old English boundary clauses, and authoritative assessments of authenticity. There is a long introduction with analysis and synthesis of the documentary evidence for Glastonbury's history in the Anglo-Saxon period and for the accumulation of its endowment, including a section on William of Malmesbury's works on Glastonbury. The volume concludes with a series of appendixes which present all the evidence for the lost charters in the Liber Terrarum and in other sources.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780197265079
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/17/2012
  • Pages: 380
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author

S. E. Kelly is Senior Research Fellow, University of Birmingham

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Table of Contents

Introduction
The History of the Abbey The History of the Archive The Manuscripts The Authenticity of the Charters The Landed Endowment The Abbots William of Malmesbury and Glastonbury
List of Charters
Sigla
The Charters
Appendixes

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