From the Norman Conquest to the Black Death: An Anthology of Writings from England

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It is often supposed that there is between the 'Old English' period that produced Beowulf and the 'Middle English' period that produced Chaucer a kind of literary 'gap' in which little or nothing happened. In fact a very large quantity of fascinating work, mainly in Latin or Anglo-Norman, but also in 'Early Middle English', appeared. This anthology makes available to the modern reader a range of texts from this period, in translation or helpfully glossed form, providing something of the rich treasure trove of literature that was produced between the Norman Conquest and the Black Death. The diversity of genres included here is astonishing - chronicle, history, legends, plays, lyrics, debates, romances, and stories of all shapes and kinds. This anthology will prove to be indispensable reading for the study of Medieval English literature.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Delightful...From the Norman Conquest to the Black Death is thoroughgoing, illuminating, and eminently readable...A useful volume that should find a home in the libraries of scholars of England and its literature, medieval literature more broadly, and the universities which hope to support them." —Comitatus
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198123538
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2011
  • Pages: 425
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Douglas Gray was educated at Wellington College and Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. He moved to Oxford in 1954, and spent his academic life there, first as a Fellow of Pembroke College, then from 1980 as the first J. R. R. Tolkien Professor at Lady Margaret Hall. His numerous publications include Later Medieval English Literature, The Oxford Book of Late Medieval Verse and Prose, Ihe Oxford Companion to ChaucerR, and the Peguin edition of The Selected Poems of Robert Henryson and William Dunbar.

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Table of Contents

1. Conquest and Conqueror
2. Early Anglo-Latin Religious Prose
3. Science, Learning, and Instructive Stories
4. Early Anglo-Latin Historians, Scholars, Encyclopedists, and Entertainers
5. 'The Matter of Britain': Geoffrey of Monmouth
6. Early Anglo-Norman Poetry: Benedeit's Voyage of St Brendan
7. Anglo-Norman Verse Chronicles
8. English in the Earlier Period
9. Science, Learning, and Instruction: Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries
10. 'The Matter of Britain' in English: Layamon's Brut
11. Anglo-Latin Poetry: Songs and Satire
12. Saints' Lives and Visions
13. Anglo-Norman Romances
14. Romances and Outlaw Tales
15. Tales of Antiquity
16. Short Romances and Lais: Marie the France
17. Fables and Animal Stories: Marie de France and others
18. Debate: The Owl and the Nightingale
19. Burlesque, Parody, Merry Tale
20. Early Middle English Religious Prose: the 'Katherine Group', the 'Wooing Group', and Ancrene Wisse
21. Moral and Religious Verse and Prose
22. English Romances
23. Lyrics, Anglo-Norman and Middle English
24. Drama
25. Later Chroniclers, Scholars and Theologians
26. English Narrative in the earlier Fourteenth Century: Robert Mannyng
27. Earlier Fourteenth-Century Alliterative Poems
28. Earlier Fourteenth-Century Mystical Writing: Richard Rolle
29. Private Devotion: Henry of Lancaster's Le Livre de Seyntz
30. Wonders of the East: Mandeville's Travels
Bibliographical Notes

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