Piers Plowman: The Prologue and Passus I-VII of the B Text As Found in Bodleian Ms. Laud Misc. 581by J. A. W. Bennett, Jack A. Bennett
E. Talbot Donaldson wrote in his first book on Piers Plowman that Langland 'in his emphasis on the individual...was in advance of his own church and of his own nation--and, indeed, of himself.' Paradoxically, as Donaldson also recognized, Langland was 'a political and religious moderate' whose cast of mind was 'conservative and traditionalist.' The poem that resulted from this curious paradox presents one of the great enigmas of all English poetry, as well as one of the major works of the Middle Ages.
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