Medieval Institute Publications at Western Michigan University publishes the TEAMS Middle English Texts series, which is designed to make available texts that occupy an important place in the literary and cultural canon but have not been readily obtainable in student editions. The focus is on Middle English literature adjacent to such major authors as Chaucer or Malory. The editions include glosses of difficult words and short introductions on the history of the work, its merits, points of topical interest and brief bibliographies.
Proposals or completed projects to be considered for publication by Medieval Institute Publications should be sent to the series editor, Russell Peck.
The English tail-rhyme romance "Sir Torrent of Portingale" (i.e., Portugal) is a preeminent example of popular fiction from the end of the Middle Ages.
Copyright 2017, pp. 138
ISBN 978-1-58044-250-3 (paperbound) $14.95
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The "Fabula Duorum Mercatorum," a romance, is one of Lydgate’s most accomplished works. In "Guy of Warwick," Lydgate presents the heroic English knight-pilgrim.
Copyright 2016, pp. x + 182
ISBN 978-1-58044-246-6 (paperbound) $24.95
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Edited by Emily Rebekah Huber and Elizabeth Robertson
The Katherine Group brings together for the first time newly edited and translated versions of three dynamic saints’ lives.
Copyright 2016, pp. viii + 368
ISBN 978-1-58044-248-0 (paperbound) $34.95
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The Complete Poetry and Music of Guillaume de Machaut, Volume 1: The Debate Poems: Le Jugement dou Roy de Behaigne, Le Jugement dou Roy de Navarre, Le Lay de Plour
Edited by Prof. R. Barton Palmer and Yolanda Plumley with Domenic Leo and Uri Smilansky
Guillaume de Machaut is the most important poet and composer of late medieval France.
Copyright 2016, pp. x + 406
ISBN: 978-1-58044-252-7 (paperbound) $29.95
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Edited by James Simpson and Sarah Peverley
As one of only a handful of texts written in the twilight years of Henry VI's reign, John Hardyng's first "Chronicle," written in 18,782 lines of verse and seven folios of prose, offers a compelling insight into the taste, hopes, and anxieties of a late fifteenth-century gentleman who had witnessed, and all too often participated in, each of the key events that defined his era.
Copyright 2015, pp. xii + 342
ISBN 978-1-58044-213-8 (paperbound) $24.95
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Edited by Peter Larkin
One of the most engaging Middle English crusading poems, "Richard Coer de Lyon" recounts in verse the exploits, both historical and fanciful, of Richard I, king of England.
Copyright 2015, pp. viii + 296
ISBN 978-1-58044-201-5 (paperbound) $29.95
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Edited by John H. Chandler
"The King of Tars" is a short Middle English poem that emphasizes ideas about race, gender and religion. It is neither a saint's life or a romance, nor a political drama or a miracle tale. Its role as entertainment is undeniable, but that entertainment thinly veils didactic intent that should be read through the lens of religious instruction.
Copyright 2015, pp. viii + 102
ISBN 978-1-58044-204-6 (paperbound) $14.95
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Oton de Granson
Edited and translated by Peter Nicholson and Joan Grenier-Winther
Oton de Granson was first acknowledged for his poetry by Geoffrey Chaucer, who called him the "flour of hem that make in Fraunce" [the flower of those that write poetry in France]. Almost certainly a personal friend to both Chaucer and Eustache Deschamps, Granson was among the first and most successful of the poets who were also courtiers. Born to the highest nobility in his native Savoy, he was well known in the courts of both France and England, and he spent the better part of his career in the service of the English king.
Copyright 2015, pp. x + 406
ISBN 978-1-58044-206-0 (paperback) $24.95
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Edited and translated by Susanna Fein, with David Raybin and Jan Ziolkowski
London, British Library MS Harley 2253 is one of the most important literary books to survive from the English medieval era. In rarity, quality and abundance, its secular love lyrics comprise an unrivaled collection. Intermingled with them are additional treasures for the student of Middle English: contemporary political songs as well as delicate lyrics designed to inspire religious devotion. And digging beyond these English gems, one readily discovers more prizes—less-well-known ones—in French and Latin: four fabliaux (the largest set from medieval England), three lives of Anglo-Saxon saintsand a wealth of satires, comedies, debates, interludes, collected sayings, conduct literature, Bible stories, dream interpretations and pilgrim guides. Rich in texts in three languages, the book's overall range is quite astounding. The Ludlow scribe, compiler and copyist, shows himself to have been a man of unusual curiosity, acquisitivenessand discerning connoisseurship.
Copyright 2015, pp. viii + 508
ISBN 978-1-58044-205-0 (paperback) $24.95
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Copyright 2014, pp. x + 517
ISBN 978-1-588044-198-8 (paperback) $24.95
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Copyright 2014, pp. x + 420
ISBN 978-1-588044-199-5 (paperback) $24.95
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Edited by Eve Salisbury and James Weldon
"Lybeaus Desconus" (the Fair Unknown) is the mid-fourteenth-century Middle English version of the classic narrative of the handsome and mysterious young outsider who comes to the court of King Arthur to prove himself worthy of joining Arthur's knights. The young knight is tested in a variety of ways, and in the course of this testing he learns both chivalric codes of conduct and the truth of his parentage. Six extant manuscripts of the poem attest to its popularity, placing it in company with "Guy of Warwick," "Bevis of Hampton" and "Sir Isumbras" among the most popular of Middle English Romances. The current edition offers readers a chance to compare two manuscript versions of the poem, one preserved in Lambeth MS 306 and the other in the Biblioteca Nazionale in Naples.
Copyright 2013, pp. viii + 216
ISBN 978-1-58044-195-7 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Russell A. Peck, with Latin translations by Andrew Galloway
The complete text of John Gower's poem is a three-volume edition, including all Latin components—with translations—of this bilingual text and extensive glosses, bibliography and explanatory notes. Volume 1 contains the Prologue and Books 1 and 8, in effect the overall structure of Gower's poem. Volume 2 contains Books 2, 3 and 4, which follow in their structure the outline of Vice and its children found in the early French poem the "Mirour de l’Omme." Volume 3 contains Books 5, 6 and 7, which follow another kind of development as Gower shifts from romance banter and formulaic confession to philosophical inquiry.
Volume 1, Second Edition
Copyright 2006, pp. xii + 334
ISBN 978-1-58044-102-5 (paperback) $29.95 Buy book from retailer
Volume 2, Second Edition
Copyright 2013, pp. x + 354
ISBN 978-1-58044-179-7 (paperback) $29.95 Buy book from retailer
Copyright 2004, pp. x + 546
ISBN 1-58044-092-4 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Melissa M. Furrow
In this fresh edition of ten comic poems, Melissa M. Furrow "aims to put funny (or would-be funny) Middle English poems under the eyes of a much broader readership" than the scholarly researchers she appealed to in her earlier edition of many of the same poems.
Copyright 2013, pp. viii + 280
ISBN 978-1-588044-192-6 (paperback) $29.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by John T. Sebastian
The Croxton play, which survives in a single sixteenth-century copy, dramatizes the physical abuse by five Muhammad-worshipping Syrian Jews of a Host, the bread consecrated by a priest during the Christian Mass. The text is the work of a playwright possessed of a tremendous theatrical imagination, notwithstanding his choice of subject matter.
Copyright 2012, pp. viii + 130
ISBN 978-1-58044-181-0 (paperback) $19.95
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The Dialogue of Solomon and Marcolf: A Dual-Language Edition from Latin and Middle English Printed Editions
Edited by Nancy Mason Bradbury and Scott Bradbury
The two texts of the dialogue presented here, a Latin version printed c. 1488 and a Middle English translation printed in 1492, preserve lively, entertaining and revealing exchanges between the Old Testament wisdom figure Solomon and Marcolf, a medieval peasant who is ragged and foul-mouthed but quick-witted and verbally astute. The "Dialogue" was a best-seller of its day; Latin versions survive in some twenty-seven manuscripts and forty-nine early printed editions, and the work was translated into a wide variety of late medieval vernaculars, including German, Dutch, Swedish, Italian, English and Welsh.
Copyright 2012, pp. viii + 110
ISBN 978-1-58044-180-3 (paperbound) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by James H. Morey
The "Prik of Conscience" is widely known among scholars of medieval English literature as the poem existing in more manuscripts—some 130—than any other Middle English poem. The author remains unknown to us, but he was clearly conversant with a wide range of patristic and clerkly authority.
Copyright 2012, pp. vi + 282
ISBN 978-1-58044-172-8 (paperback) $29.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Clifford Davidson
The feast of Corpus Christi, celebrated annually on Thursday after Trinity Sunday, was devoted to the Eucharist, and the normal practice was to have solemn processions through the city with the Host, the consecrated wafer that was believed to have been transformed into the true body and blood of Jesus. In this way the "cultus Dei" thus celebrated allowed the people to venerate the Eucharistic bread in order that they might be stimulated to devotion and brought symbolically, even mystically into a relationship with the central moments of salvation history.
Copyright 2011, pp. x + 604
ISBN 978-1-58044-162-9 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited and translated by Michael Livingston
Like the Bible upon which it is based, [the metrical paraphrase] is unlikely to be a text read cover-to-cover by the faint-hearted. . . . The paraphrase is, in several ways, a remarkable artifact of the Chaucerian period, one that can reveal a great deal about vernacular biblical literature in Middle English, about readership and lay understandings of the Bible, about the relationship between Christians and Jews in late medieval England, about the environment in which the Lollards and other reformers worked, about perceived roles of women in history and in society and even about the composition of medieval drama. . . .
Copyright 2011, pp. vi + 706
ISBN 978-1-58044-150-6 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited and translated by R.F. Yeager
Gower's "Traitié" and "Cinkante Balades" are the only extant formes fixes ("fixed forms," that is, fourteenth-century French lyrics, essentially the balade, rondeau and virelai, developed as literary styles from thirteenth-century dances) that we can be assured were written by a native Englishman, those of "Ch" (and Chaucer's "many a song and many a leccherous lay" - presumably in French) notwithstanding.
Copyright 2011, pp. viii + 188
ISBN 978-1-58044-155-1 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by David J. Parkinson
In this new edition of the poems of Robert Henryson, David Parkinson offers editions of Henryson's "Fables," "The Testament of Cresseid," "Orpheus and Eurydice" and twelve shorter poems (grouped according to the strength of their attribution to Henryson), as well as the glosses and explanatory and textual notes characteristic of Middle English Texts series volumes.
Copyright 2010, pp. viii + 294
ISBN 978-1-58044-139-1 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by David N. Klausner
"The Castle of Perseverance," like the other surviving morality plays, deals allegorically with the life of man, his struggle against temptation and sin and his hope of final redemption. The play begins before Mankind's birth and concludes with his salvation after death (presented as a close call), and features the traditional three enemies of Mankind (the World, the Flesh and the Devil) and his two advisors (the Good Angel and the Bad Angel).
Copyright 2010, pp. viii + 150
ISBN 978-1-58044-149-0 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Kathleen M. Ashley and Gerard NeCastro
"Mankind" is without a doubt the most amusing and controversial morality play surviving from fifteenth-century England. As an allegory about the vulnerable situation in which most people find themselves—torn between good judgment and the temptation to misbehave—the play's moral action is conventional.
Copyright 2010, pp. vi + 90
ISBN 978-1-58044-140-7 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Claire Sponsler
This book presents a large sampling of the dramatic texts of John Lydgate, the preeminent poet of fifteenth-century England. These verses are, as Claire Sponsler notes in her introduction, "of great importance for literary and theatrical history."
Copyright 2010, pp. vi + 186
ISBN 978-1-58044-148-3 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by David N. Klausner
This volume completes the presentation of the five surviving Middle English morality plays. In addition to the texts of "The Pride of Life" and "Wisdom," Klausner's edition includes two appendices which provide the texts of primary sources for the two plays as well as appropriate music which may have accompanied performances, especially "Wisdom."
Copyright 2009, pp. viii + 118
ISBN 978-1-58044-134-6 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
John the Blind Audelay
Edited by Susanna Fein
[Audelay's] idiosyncratic devotional tastes, interesting personal life history, and declared political affiliations—loyalty to king, upholder of estates, anxiety over heresy—make him worthy of careful study beside his better-known contemporaries. The Audelay manuscript also contains unique copies of other alliterative poems of the ornate style seen in "Gawain and the Green Knight" and "The Pistel of Swete Susan."
Copyright 2009, pp. x + 394
ISBN 978-1-58044-131-5 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Jenny Adams
Despite its title, Caxton's "Game and Playe of the Chesse" does not, in fact, have much to say about a game or about playing it. Instead, the work uses the chessboard and its pieces to allegorize a political community whose citizens contribute to the common good.
Copyright 2009, pp. viii + 156
ISBN 978-1-58044-130-8 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by James I. Wimsatt, Revised Edition
On several counts, one particular collection of French lyrics made in France in the late fourteenth century, University of Pennsylvania MS 15, is the most likely repository of Chaucer's French poems. It is the largest manuscript anthology extant of fourteenth-century French lyrics in the formes fixes (balade, rondeaux, virelay, lay and five-stanza chanson) with by far the largest number of works of unknown authorship.
Copyright 2009, pp. viii + 166
ISBN 978-1-58044-132-2 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by George Shuffelton
Since its rediscovery by nineteenth-century scholarship, Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Ashmole 61 has never been ignored, though it has also not gained a great deal of notoriety beyond the scholars of Middle English romance. The manuscript has also been singled out as an example of the reading material popular with middle-class English families in the later Middle Ages.
Copyright 2008, pp. viii + 659
ISBN 978-1-58044-129-2 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Anne B. Thompson
Composed in rhyming English verse, the Northern homily cycle is the earliest and most complete work of its kind (Gospel paraphrases with homilies on the theme of the Gospel texts), its widespread and enduring popularity witnessed by three distinct recensions and twenty surviving manuscripts ranging from the early fourteenth to the mid-fifteenth centuries.
Copyright 2008, pp. viii + 296
ISBN 978-1-58044-126-1 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Edward E. Foster, Second Edition
In "A Manual of the Writings in Middle English," "Amis and Amiloun," "Robert of Cisyle" and "Sir Amadace" are classified by Lillian Herlands Hornstein as legendary romances of didactic intent, which does not mean that they are devoid of liveliness or interest.
Copyright 2007, pp. viii + 136
ISBN 978-1-58044-125-4 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by J. Allan Mitchell
"The Temple of Glas" takes the form of an elusive and suspenseful—but for that reason all the more sensational—dream vision that demands close attention to detail and the dynamic way in which the meaning of events unfolds. Seducing readers with possibilities remains what the poem does best, and that special magnetism speaks not only to the provenance and textual history of Lydgate's text but also to its literary qualities.
Copyright 2007, pp. viii + 100
ISBN 978-1-58044-117-9 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Tamarah Kohanski and C. David Benson
"The Book of John Mandeville" has tended to be neglected by modern teachers and scholars, yet this intriguing and copious work has much to offer the student of medieval literature, history and culture. [It] was a contemporary bestseller, providing readers with exotic information about locales from Constantinople to China and about the social and religious practices of peoples such as the Greeks, Muslims and Brahmins.
Copyright: 2007, pp. viii + 180
ISBN 978-1-58044-113-1 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Douglas Sugano with assistance by Victor I. Scherb
In the late 1400s in eastern England, a scribe was in the process of compiling a large dramatic manuscript of over two hundred vellum folios. The manuscript contains components of an independent Mary Play, parts one and two of an independent Passion Play and an independent Assumption of Mary Play, as well as ten play subjects that appear in no other English cycles.
Copyright 2007, pp. viii + 506
ISBN 978-1-58044-116-2 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Clifford Davidson, Martin W. Walsh and Ton J. Broos
Faced with death's certainty—and the uncertainty of the time of its coming, particularly in a historical period of widespread plague and other afflictions—as well as the inevitability of the hereafter, what is one to do? "Everyman" speaks to this dilemma.
Copyright 2007, pp. viii + 108
ISBN 978-1-58044-106-3 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by John William Sutton
At the forefront of the medieval wisdom tradition was "The Dicts and Sayings of the Philosophers," a long prose text that purports to be a compendium of lore collected from biblical, classical and legendary philosophers and sages. "Dicts and Sayings" was a well-known work that traveled across many lands and was translated into many languages.
Copyright 2006, pp. viii + 168
ISBN 978-1-58044-105-6 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Four Middle English Romances: Sir Isumbras, Octavian, Sir Eglamour of Artois, Sir Tryamour, Second Edition
Edited by Harriet Hudson
"Sir Isumbras," "Octavian," "Sir Eglamour of Artois" and "Sir Tryamour" are important works in a major literary development of the fourteenth century: the flourishing of Middle English popular romance. These four narratives were among the most popular; all survive in multiple manuscripts and continued to circulate in print through the sixteenth century.
Copyright 2006, pp. viii + 210
ISBN 978-1-58044-111-7 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Sentimental and Humorous Romances: Floris and Blancheflour, Sir Degrevant, The Squire of Low Degree, The Tournament of Tottenham, and The Feast of Tottenham
Edited by Erik Kooper
This volume presents a unique collection of Middle English romances, each with a different view of society, ranging from a tale of oriental wonders ("Floris and Blancheflour") to excellent examples of the burlesque ("The Tournament of Tottenham" and "The Feast of Tottenham").
Copyright 2006, pp. viii + 226
ISBN 978-1-58044-103-2 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Kathleen Forni
The poems in this volume were prized and preserved because of their association with Chaucer’s name and have been, paradoxically, almost entirely ignored by modern readers for the same reason. The various genres represented in this sampler attest to the diversity of late medieval literary tastes and to the flexibility of the courtly idiom.
Copyright 2005, pp. viii + 174
ISBN 1-58044-096-7 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
The Minor Latin Works, edited and translated by R.F. Yeager
In Praise of Peace, edited by Michael Livingston
Gower's achievement in writing substantially in all three primary languages of his time—Anglo-French, English and Latin—was a source of pride to others and, undoubtedly, to him too: into the final years of his life he continued to produce poetry in all three languages. "In Praise of Peace" [is] in the same position as the shorter Latin works edited and translated in this volume: ignored, neglected reduced or relegated to the dusty realm of footnotes.
Copyright 2005, pp. viii + 144
ISBN 1-58044-097-5 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Linne R. Mooney and Mary-Jo Arn
This volume reflects the wide scope of these "prison poems" by bringing together a new edition of "The Kingis Quair," a selection from Charles d'Orleans' "Fortunes Stabilnes," a poem by George Ashby, who was imprisoned in London's Fleet prison, and the poems of two other poets, both anonymous, who wrote about physical and/or emotional imprisonment.
Copyright 2005, pp. viii + 206
ISBN 1-58044-093-2 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by E. Gordon Whatley, with Anne B. Thompson and Robert K. Upchurch
This volume is conceived as a complement to another Middle English Texts series text, Sherry Reames' "Middle English Legends of Women Saints." This selection "is intended to be broadly representative of saints' lives in Middle English and of the classic types of hagiographic legend as these were presented to the lay public and less-literate clergy of late medieval England."
Copyright 2004, pp. x + 378
ISBN 1-58044-089-4 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Michael Livingston
The poem chronicles a historical war, and it is this historical quality that must stand out: the poem not only has resonances of the bloodshed that battle inevitably brings, but it also is, in a very literal sense, history. That is to say, the war is over. The vengeance of Jesus has been accomplished.
Copyright 2004, pp. viii + 146
ISBN 1-58044-090-8 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by John Conlee
Dunbar's poems offer vivid depictions of late medieval Scottish society and serve up a striking pageant of colorful figures at the court of James IV (r. 1488–1513), with which he was associated for much of his adult life. The poems are remarkable both for their diversity and variability and for their multiplicity of voices, styles and tones.
Copyright 2004, pp. x + 478
ISBN 1-58044-086-X (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Dana M. Symons
The poems in this volume were all attributed to Chaucer by early compilers or editors of his work in the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries and were not removed from the Chaucer canon until the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century, when they became identified simply as Chaucerian.
Copyright 2004, pp. viii + 298
ISBN 1-58044-087-8 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Alison Wiggins
The poem, which survives only in the Auchinleck Manuscript, deals with the later years of Guy's life, beginning with his return to Warwick after having established himself on the Continent as a pre-eminent model of knighthood. After his marriage, however, he is stricken by remorse for the very actions that have brought him fame, and he sets out anonymously on a series of pilgrimages of atonement.
Copyright 2004, pp. viii + 172
ISBN 1-58044-088-6 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Edward E. Foster
Through these fourteenth-century Middle English poems, readers can experience something of the controversies that surfaced and resurfaced even after Aquinas had articulated his doctrine of the Communion of Saints. All three poems were quite popular, as was the doctrine of Purgatory itself.
Copyright 2004, pp. viii + 304
ISBN 1-58044-082-7 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by David R. Carlson, with a verse translation by A.G. Rigg
The poem that Richard Maidstone wrote on the metropolitan crisis of 1392 reports information about the royal entry that concluded the crisis in greater detail than any other source. . . . [It] is above all an ideologically driven intervention . . . addressing a particular political circumstance.
Copyright 2003, pp. viii + 136
ISBN 1-58044-080-0 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Anne McKim
"The Wallace" catalogs the sheer brutality of war. We are regaled with such detailed accounts of the sacking of towns and the burning down of buildings full of screaming inhabitants that the smells and sounds, as well as the terrible sights, of war are graphically conveyed.
Copyright 2003, pp. viii + 290
ISBN 1-58044-076-2 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Sherry L. Reames, with the assistance of Martha G. Blalock and Wendy R. Larson
This book presents a collection of saints' lives intended to suggest the diversity of possibilities beneath the supposedly fixed and predictable surfaces of the legends, using multiple retellings of the same legend to illustrate that medieval readers and listeners did not just passively receive saints’ legends but continually and actively appropriated them.
Copyright 2003, pp. viii + 314
ISBN 1-58044-046-0 (paperback) $29.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Eve Salisbury
The disparate texts in this anthology, produced in England between the late thirteenth and the early sixteenth centuries, challenge, and in some cases parody and satirize, the institution of marriage. The texts bridge generic categories.
Copyright 2002, pp. x + 278
ISBN 1-58044-035-5 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Sarah Stanbury
"Pearl" resists identification by author, date, occasion or place of composition; still it is almost unanimously hailed as one of the masterpieces of our literature, so skilled is its author, so eloquent its language.
Copyright 2001, pp. viii + 112
ISBN 1-58044-033-9 (paperback) $14.95
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Edited by Robert R. Edwards
John Lydgate's "The Siege of Thebes," written c. 1421–22, is the only Middle English poetic text that recounts the fratricidal struggle between Oedipus's sons Eteocles and Polynices as they contend for the lordship of Thebes. The text reflects the problem of poetic authority and the political and ethical themes of Lydgate's poetic career in the 1420s, when he was writing as a Lancastrian propagandist and as unofficial royal poet.
Copyright 2001, pp. x + 198
ISBN 1-58044-074-6 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Robert Hasenfratz
"Ancrene Wisse" or the "Anchoresses' Guide" written sometime roughly between 1225 and 1240, represents a revision of an earlier work, usually called the "Ancrene Riwle" or "Anchorites' Rule," a book of religious instruction for three lay women of noble birth, sisters, who had themselves enclosed as anchoresses somewhere in the West Midlands, perhaps somewhere between Worcester and Wales.
Copyright 2000, pp. xii + 690
ISBN 1-58044-070-3 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Thomas H. Bestul
Walter Hilton's "The Scale of Perfection" maintains a secure place among the major religious treatises composed in fourteenth-century England. This guide to the contemplative life, written in two books of more than 40,000 words each, is notable for its careful explorations of its religious themes and also as a monument of Middle English prose.
Copyright 2000, pp. viii + 296
ISBN 1-58044-069-X (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by James M. Dean
The texts, both anonymous, are "Richard the Redeless," which concerns the governmental style of Richard II, and "Mum and the Sothsegger," which addresses social issues in the reign of Henry IV. Both works reveal that alliterative poetry in the "Piers Plowman" tradition continued to be the chief vehicle for political and social criticism at the turn of the fourteenth century.
Copyright 2000, pp. viii + 175
ISBN 1-58044-068-1 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Karen A. Winstead
In telling the story of the life of the virgin martyr Katherine, Capgrave uses many of the tropes that mark the enormously popular genre of hagiography as it was written throughout the Middle Ages. Capgrave inserts digressions on Greek and Roman history; on just and unjust rule and justifiable vs. unjustifiable rebellion; on child care; on medieval English feasts, jousts and pageants; and on the role(s) of women.
Copyright 1999, pp. x + 322
ISBN 1-58044-053-3 (paperback) $29.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Charles R. Blyth
"The Regiment of Princes," written about 1410–11, was composed at a time when England was still feeling the consequences of the deposition of Richard II. Essentially it is addressed to a prince on the subject of his governance, but it exhibits considerable generic instability and thus raises fundamental questions about how we should understand the tone of considerable portions of the poem.
Copyright 1999, pp. viii + 280
ISBN 1-58044-023-1 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
The Assembly of Gods: Le Assemble de Dyeus, or Banquet of Gods and Goddesses, with the Discourse of Reason and Sensuality
Edited by Jane Chance
"The Assembly of Gods" is an anonymous English dream vision allegory produced, probably, in the third quarter of the fifteenth century. Within the framework of the dream vision he blends didacticism with the mythological and the courtly, and seeks to bring Reson and Sensualyté into accord by means of an assembly of the classical gods that is called to adjudicate the relative merits of Discorde's desire to overthrow Vertu.
Copyright 1999, pp. viii + 155
ISBN 1-58044-022-3 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Ronald B. Herzman, Graham Drake and Eve Salisbury
The romances in this volume contain some of the finest imaginative work of what is known as the Matter of England, the non-Arthurian romances that deal largely with English subjects and locales. These romances span a broad period of the Middle Ages, from c. 1225 ("King Horn") to c. 1355–99 ("Athelston").
Copyright 1999, pp. viii + 390
ISBN 1-58044-017-7 (paperback) $39.95
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Edited by Stephen F. Page
John Metham's "Amoryus and Cleopes" can be seen as a key piece in the reception of Chaucer's works. Metham does not slavishly imitate Chaucer, however; instead, he adapts features of the master’s works to his own ultimately moral purpose, fusing them with elements of classical tale, courtly and popular romance, encyclopedic compendium, hagiography, mirror for princes and encomium, to create a tightly constructed late-medieval romance.
Copyright 1999, pp. viii + 144
ISBN 1-58044-016-9 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Karen Saupe
The poems selected for this volume provide a sampling of the rich tradition of Marian devotion as expressed in Middle English. They range widely in form, tone and aesthetic quality. Taken together, they express the full range of a people’s effort to voice its anxieties and joys through Mary.
Copyright 1998, pp. xii + 300
ISBN 1-58044-006-1 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by John Conlee
The Middle English "Prose Merlin" gives students of medieval Arthurian literature access—though at one remove—to the Merlin section of the Old French Vulgate Cycle, an interconnected set of Arthurian works composed during the first half of the thirteenth century. Written in the latter half of the fifteenth century, it is a treasure trove of characters, incidents and motifs, many of which are found nowhere else in Arthurian literature.
Copyright 1998, pp. viii + 399
ISBN 1-58044-015-0 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by R. Allen Shoaf
This edition of "The Testament of Love" is the first to be published since W. W. Skeat undertook the task in 1897. . . . [I]n this edition, a diplomatic transcription of Thynne [1532 edition] is printed with, contrapuntally, a pointed version of the text which represents the efforts of R. Allen Shoaf, the editor, to construe it.
Copyright 1998, pp. xiv + 457
ISBN 1-58044-001-0 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Robert R. Edwards
"Troy Book" is one of the most ambitious attempts in medieval vernacular poetry to recount the story of the Trojan war. John Lydgate, monk of the great Benedictine abbey of Bury St. Edmunds in Suffolk, began composing the poem in October 1412 on commission from Henry, Prince of Wales, later King Henry V and he completed it in 1420.
Copyright 1998, pp. x + 430
ISBN 1-879288-99-0 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Susanna Greer Fein
These moral love songs and laments illustrate how, in the devout medieval English sensibility, doctrine was vitally connected to affective receptivity. Narrative moods range from love-longing and passion to bitter grief and sorrowful lament, feelings that devolve from the intimately personal state of being God's created creature, individually answerable to divine law and love.
Copyright 1998, pp. x + 401
ISBN 1-879288-97-4 (paperback) $39.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Stephen Knight and Thomas Ohlgren, with contributions by Thomas E. Kelly, Russell A. Peck, Michael Swanton and Paul Whitfield White
Here is a comprehensive collection of materials that deal with Robin Hood and such other "outlaw" figures as Hereward the Wake, Eustache the Monk and Fouke le Fitz Waryn. In this text the figure of Robin Hood can be viewed in historical perspective, from the early accounts in the chronicles through the ballads, plays and romances that grew around his fame and impressed him on our fictional and historical imaginations.
Copyright 1997; 2nd ed. 2000, pp. xvi + 726
ISBN 1-58044-067-3 (paperback) $39.95
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Edited by Lynn Staley
Written probably in the late 1430s, "The Book of Margery Kempe" is one of the most astonishing documents of late medieval English life. Kempe examines the fundamental conflicts and tensions of that world by describing her gradual and voluntary movement away from worldly prestige.
Copyright 1996, pp. viii + 263
ISBN 1-879288-72-9 (paperback) $24.95
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Edited by Patrick J. Gallacher
Since it was written "The Cloud" has attracted the attention of a diverse range of readers, from Robert Bateman, an influential seventeenth-century Baptist, to the novelist Aldous Huxley and the psychologist Ira Progoff. Here a new edition makes the work available to contemporary readers.
Copyright 1997, pp. x + 133
ISBN 1-879288-89-3 (paperback) $14.95
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Edited by James M. Dean
The authors of the poems and documents, mostly anonymous or pseudonymous, speak in the traditional language of complaint and satire; but the outlines of their anxiety are fairly clear. This volume contains five sections: Poems of Political Prophecy; Anticlerical Poems and Documents; Literature of Richard II's Reign and the Peasants' Revolt; Poems against Simony and the Abuse of Money; and Plowman Writings.
Copyright 1996, pp. xxvi + 278
ISBN 1-879288-64-8 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Richard H. Osberg
The eleven extant poems attributed to Laurence Minot celebrate a sequence of English victories on the Scottish border and on the continent between 1333, the Battle of Halidon Hill, and the surrender of the French town of Guînes in 1352. The poems appear to have been written shortly after the events they commemorate.
Copyright 1996, pp. viii + 149
ISBN 1-879288-67-2 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Anne Laskaya and Eve Salisbury
Breton Lays—those poems produced by or after the fashion of Marie de France in the twelfth century and which claim to be "literary versions of lays sung by ancient Bretons to the accompaniment of the harp"—served many functions. The poems edited in this volume, were distinctly "English" Breton lays "largely because they point to a renewed interest in the nuclear English family and the shaping of distinctly English family values."
Copyright 1995, pp. viii + 445
ISBN 1-879288-62-1 (paperback) $39.95
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Edited by Thomas Hahn
This volume is the first affordable, modern collection of all eleven of the known Middle English Gawain tales, and aims to make these texts accessible to a wider, contemporary audience. These poems—"The Wedding of Sir Gawain and Dame Ragnelle," "Sir Gawain and the Carle of Carlisle," "The Avowyng of Arthur," "The Awyntrs off Arthur," "The Knightly Tale of Gologras and Gawain," "The Greene Knight," "The Turke and Sir Gawain," "The Marriage of Sir Gawain," "The Carle of Carlisle," "The Jeaste of Sir Gawain" and "King Arthur and King Cornwall"—are united by their common concern with the theme of chivalry. Sir Gawain was by far the most popular of Arthur’s knights in medieval England, and the verses collected here offer a window not only into English views on Gawain but also attitudes towards the knightly ideal and chivalry.
Copyright 1995, pp. xii + 439
ISBN 1-879288-59-1 (paperback) $39.95
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Edited by Mary Flowers Braswell
This volume contains the only known English version of Chrétien de Troyes’s romance of the naïve knight Perceval, "Sir Perceval of Galles." The work uses Perceval’s ridiculous behavior as a late medieval satire of courtliness. Accompanying this tale is "Ywain and Gawain," a translation of a second Chrétien poem, "Le Chevalier au Lion." Unlike "Sir Perceval," this poem extols the virtues of chivalry and honor.
Copyright 1995, pp. viii + 212
ISBN 1-879288-60-5 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Larry D. Benson, revised by Edward E. Foster
Professor Benson's edition of the "Stanzaic Morte Arthur" and the "Alliterative Morte Arthure," has been long out of print. Now his edition of these important Middle English poems, revised and updated by Professor Edward E. Foster to take account of recent scholarship, is again made available to students.
Copyright 1994, pp. xii + 292
ISBN 1-879288-38-9 (paperback) $24.95
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Edited by Alan Lupack
This new edition makes the poems available to students of English romance and of the Matter of Britain and enables us to enrich our sense of the texture of English treatments of the vast body of legends that grew around the court of Arthur.
Copyright 1994, pp. viii + 282
ISBN 1-879288-50-8 (paperback) $24.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Georgia Ronan Crampton
This first-person account of the visions experienced by Julian of Norwich in May of 1373 is remarkable for its vivid prose and as an example both of early autobiographical writing in the vernacular and of a spiritual document.
Copyright 1994, pp. x + 220
ISBN 1-879288-45-1 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by John M. Bowers
When Geoffrey Chaucer died in 1400, his massive project "The Canterbury Tales" lay unfinished and unpublished. This volume includes five such works that date from the fifteenth century and survive in at least one manuscript collection of Chaucer's Tales: John Lydgate's Prologue to the Siege of Thebes, The Ploughman's Tale, The Cook's Tale, Spurious Links and The Canterbury Interlude and Merchant's Tale of Beryn.
Copyright 1992, pp. viii + 200
ISBN 1-879288-23-0 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by David Parkinson
Gavin Douglas's "The Palis of Honoure" is a fascinating but still rather neglected dream poem from early sixteenth-century Scotland. "The Palis of Honoure" impresses even modern readers by means of its sheer verve and inventiveness.
Copyright 1992, pp. viii + 140
ISBN 1-879288-25-7 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Warren Ginsberg
The poems are complex and provide insight into fourteenth-century culture. As the editor observes, "the poem's perspectives are truly dizzying: on the one hand, economics, politics, ethics and social relations are seen as an interrelated set of universal, timeless principles; on the other, they appear as actual, contingent conditions that have resulted from specific acts in history."
Copyright 1992, pp. viii + 83
ISBN 1-879288-26-5 (paperback) $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by James M. Dean
The six Middle English poems included here attack ecclesiastical corruption; most of the poems were written by disgruntled Lollards about clerics and friars in the late fourteenth or early fifteenth century. "Piers the Plowman's Crede" deals with a poor man trying to learn the Apostle's Creed from friars, who cannot teach him and only want his money; eventually the man can only learn the creed from Piers the Plowman. "The Plowman's Tale" casts an anticlerical tale in the mold of one of the Canterbury Tales. "Jack Upland," "Friar Daw's Reply," and "Upland's Rejoinder" comprise a debate over the hypocrisy of friars. Meanwhile, "Why I Can't Be a Nun" decries the sins of nuns in convents.
Copyright 1991, pp. vi + 250
ISBN 1-879288-05-2 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Russell A. Peck
This volume makes accessible for students of the Middle Ages Middle English verses about heroic women from the Old Testament. Included are "The Storie of Asneth," "The Pistel of Swete Susan," "The Story of Jephthah and his Daughter," and "The Story of Judith." These poems exhibit the attitudes of Late Medieval England towards heroic women, and offer an unusually positive depiction of Judiasm.
Copyright 1991, pp. x + 157
ISBN 1-879288-11-7 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Derek Pearsall
An asset to any study of gender in medieval England, this volume contains three poems that complement each other in their treatments of relations between the sexes. "The Floure and the Leafe" explores the courtly imagery of the flower and leaf, wherein the flower symbolizes the fickleness and shallow attraction characteristic of men, compared to the evergreen persistence of the leaf, likened to the long-suffering of women. Meanwhile, "The Assembly of Ladies" recounts the activities of a group of women while describing the differences between the sexes. Finally, the dream poem "The Isle of Ladies" tells of a male dreamer's interactions with the ladies of an all-female island.
Copyright 1990, pp. vi + 146
ISBN 0-918720-43-5 (paperback), $14.95 Buy book from retailer
Edited by Alan Lupack
This volume serves as an excellent introduction to the tradition of romances dealing with the matter of France—that is, Charlemagne and his Twelve Peers. Of the three groups of English Charlemagne romances, the Ferumbras group, the Otuel group and "detached romances," the editor has selected one of each: "The Sultan of Babylon," "The Siege of Milan," and "The Tale of Ralph the Collier."
Copyright 1990, pp. viii + 207
ISBN 0-918720-44-3 (paperback) $19.95 Buy book from retailer