The Texts and Contexts of Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Laud Misc. 108: The Shaping of English Vernacular Narrative

Overview

The late thirteenth-century, monolingual Oxford manuscript, Bodleian Library, MS Laud Misc. 108, bears singular importance to medieval studies, for it preserves and anthologizes unique versions of several seminal Middle English texts, including South English Legendary, Havelok the Dane, and King Horn and Somer Soneday. While critics have traditionally classified these poems by genre, this book returns them to their manuscript context in a comprehensive examination of this vernacular codex. Considering the ...

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Overview

The late thirteenth-century, monolingual Oxford manuscript, Bodleian Library, MS Laud Misc. 108, bears singular importance to medieval studies, for it preserves and anthologizes unique versions of several seminal Middle English texts, including South English Legendary, Havelok the Dane, and King Horn and Somer Soneday. While critics have traditionally classified these poems by genre, this book returns them to their manuscript context in a comprehensive examination of this vernacular codex. Considering the manuscript as a “whole book” rather than a miscellany of romances, saints' lives, and religious poems, these inter-connected essays focus on the physical, contextual, and critical intersections of Bodleian Library, MS Laud Misc. 108. Codicological evidence foregrounds the manuscript’s investment in a particular vision of an English Christian identity.
Contributors are A.S.G. Edwards, Thomas R. Liszka, Murray J. Evans, Andrew Taylor, Diane Speed, Susanna Fein, Robert Mills, Andrew Lynch, Daniel Kline, Christina M. Fitzgerald, and J. Justin Brent.

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Meet the Author

Kimberly K. Bell,, Ph.D. (2002) in English, Georgia State University, is Associate Professor of English at Sam Houston State University. She has published articles on various Middle English texts, including Havelok the Dane (2008).
Julie Nelson Couch, Ph.D. (2000) in English, Brown University, is Associate Professor of English at Texas Tech University. She has published several articles on texts found in the Bodleian Library, MS Laud Misc. 108, including two recent articles on Havelok the Dane (2008).

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