Academic journal article Parergon

Middle English Religious Writing in Practice: Texts, Readers, and Transformations

Academic journal article Parergon

Middle English Religious Writing in Practice: Texts, Readers, and Transformations

Article excerpt

Rice, Nicole R., ed., Middle English Religious Writing in Practice: Texts, Readers, and Transformations (Late Medieval and Early Modern Studies, 21), Turnhout, Brepols, 2013; hardback; pp. x, 278; 2 b/w illustrations; R.R.P. [euro]75.00, ISBN 9782503541020.

This collection of eight essays considers various later Middle English devotional texts (mainly prose) and their uses and adaptations during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Part I, 'Continental Religious Women in English Practice', opens with Jennifer N. Brown on the fates, in manuscript and print, of three English translations of texts associated with Catherine of Siena: a letter from the head of the Grande Chartreuse, supporting her canonization, Raymond of Capua's life of the saint, and the Orchard of Syon. Michael G. Sargent unravels the complexities of the French and English textual traditions of Marguerite Porete's Mirouer des simples ames, and details the extraordinary story of the text's treatment in the twentieth century. Martha W. Driver considers John Audelay's verse prayer to St Birgitta of Sweden, found in Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Douce 302, in its liturgical and devotional contexts.

In Part II, 'Manuscript Compilation and the Adaptation of Religious Practice', Mary Agnes Edsall writes on the fifteenth-century Fyler Manuscript (San Marino, Huntington Library, MS HM 744), belonging to a family of merchants, and its antecedents. …

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