Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Nicholas Love: The Mirror of the Blessed Life of Jesus Christ

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Nicholas Love: The Mirror of the Blessed Life of Jesus Christ

Article excerpt

Nicholas Love: The Mirror of the Blessed Life of Jesus Christ, ed. Michael G. Sargent (Exeter: University of Exeter Press, 2005). 163 + 433 pp. ISBN 0-85989-740-0. £60.00. Current interest in medieval English vernacular theology and Lancastrian material culture make Michael G. Sargent's new edition of The Mirror of the Blessed life of fesus Christ by Nicholas Love particularly timely. Sargent has wresded with this text before, producing his Garland edition in 1992 (his recent 'reading text' for Exeter Medieval Texts and Studies is essentially an extract of the present volume). Since 1992 Sargent has radically revised his views about the Mirror's textual tradition. Having previously identified two groups of manuscript witnesses (authorial and scribal), he now distinguishes diree: Love's original version, Love's revised version, and scribal revisions of the text. Although the present edition is based on the same manuscripts as the Garland best-text edition, the critical apparatus now reflects all three manuscript groups (no pages of variants). Sargent's persistence in disentangling these textual affiliations, and his perseverance in re-editing the text in accordance with his discoveries, demonstrates the inherent difficulties of dealing with large-corpus texts.

Sargent's lengthy introduction provides descriptions of the two base manuscripts, and brief summaries of the rest, and oudines the textual and physical characteristics of each manuscript group. …

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