Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Latin Learning and English Lore: Studies in Anglo-Saxon Literature for Michael Lapidge

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Latin Learning and English Lore: Studies in Anglo-Saxon Literature for Michael Lapidge

Article excerpt

Latin Learning and English Lore: Studies in Anglo-Saxon Literature for Michael Lapidge, ed. Katherine O'Brien O'Keeffe and Andy Orchard (Toronto and London: University of Toronto Press, 2005). 2 vols: xvii + 460 pp.; xvii + 431 pp.; 6 plates. ISBN 0-8020-8919-4. £96.00.

This impressive two-volume, forty-essay collection celebrates the outstanding scholarly achievements of Michael Lapidge, who retired as Notre Dame Professor of English in 2004. Before moving to the USA in 1998, he was Elrington and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at the University of Cambridge. He also served for over twenty years as editor of Anglo-Saxon England, unquestionably the foremost journal devoted to the Old English period; while the list of his own publications (as it appears usefully in an appendix to this Festschrift, II, 395-406) runs to no fewer than 180 items, many of them very substantial indeed (as in the case of his recent monumental study of the cult of St Swithun). Much of his work, whether alone or in fruitful collaboration with other scholars, has been pioneering; and his influence on the field has been immense, as the contributors to this collection repeatedly testify. In particular, Lapidge has probably done more than anyone else to 'demonstrate the benefits to be gained from seeing Old English and Anglo-Latin texts as intimately connected parts of the same literary tradition', as Andy Orchard puts it (I, 299-300). This is clearly a recurrent theme throughout the two volumes of the Festschrift, giving it an intellectual coherence that is perhaps unusual in such collections, and certainly all the more striking given the sheer size of this one. …

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