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Northern English Books, Owners and Makers in the Late Middle Ages

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Challenging an earlier view that hand-produced books before the age of print in northern England were few, purely practical, and crudely written and decorated. John B. Friedman seeks to enlighten readers on the value of their true aesthetic sensibility. Using over 200 relatively unknown manuscripts from the area, he reveals an active northern book trade at York and Durham, which served a wide range of gentry, urban bourgeoisie, and ecclesiastical users. No other work on book production and patronage in the North ...
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Overview

Challenging an earlier view that hand-produced books before the age of print in northern England were few, purely practical, and crudely written and decorated. John B. Friedman seeks to enlighten readers on the value of their true aesthetic sensibility. Using over 200 relatively unknown manuscripts from the area, he reveals an active northern book trade at York and Durham, which served a wide range of gentry, urban bourgeoisie, and ecclesiastical users. No other work on book production and patronage in the North of England at the end of the Middle Ages exists, and only a few studies in general look at the English provincial book trade. Unlike many aristocratic manuscripts produced in London and typically related to the court or palace, northern manuscripts reflect social and religious changes and regional social currents. Friedman's thesis extends the geographic and class boundaries for the study of late medieval English manuscripts. His work dramatically reveals an unusually broad range of northern books in the mainstream of English taste, books that were used to convey the values of thriving merchants and ecclesiastical figures. In addition to historians and manuscript specialists, this book will have a strong appeal to antiquarians and bibliophiles of the English language.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780815626497
  • Publisher: Syracuse University Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/1995
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Pages: 352

Table of Contents

Illustrations
Introduction
Acknowledgments
1 Northern Book-Owning Men and Women: Evidence from Wills and Extant Manuscripts 1
2 Northern Professional Scribes and Scribe Families 31
3 Color and the Archaizing Style 73
4 The Interlace and Mask Medallion Style 108
5 "Hermits Painted at the Front": Images of Popular Piety in the North 148
6 Three Northern Magnates as Book Patrons: John Newton, Thomas Langley, Thomas Rotherham, and their Manuscripts 203
App. A. The Pigment Folium 227
App. B. A Handlist of Extant Northern Manuscripts 237
App. C. Book Ownership in the North: A Census from Wills 255
Abbreviations 267
Notes 275
Glossary of Art Historical and Codicological Terms 351
Bibliography 357
Index 407
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