Academic journal article Medium Aevum

John Mirk's Festial, Edited from British Library MS Cotton Claudius A.II Vol. II

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

John Mirk's Festial, Edited from British Library MS Cotton Claudius A.II Vol. II

Article excerpt

EDITIONS OF TEXTS

Mirk 's Bestiai, Edited from British Library MS Cotton Claudius All, Vol. II, ed. Susan Powell, English Text Society Original Series 335 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 201 1). viii + 501 pp. ISBN 978-0-19-959037-3. £70.00. This is the second and final volume of Susan Powell's authoritative edition of the Bestial, an important late fourteenth-century collection of sermons composed by the Augustinian canon John Mirk. The first volume appeared in 2009 as number 3341? the Original Series published by the Early English Text Society, and contained the introduction and the first forty-nine sermons of the cycle. This second volume of the set presents the remainder of the text: sermons 50-68, running from the festival of St James the Aposde (25 July) to that of St Katherine (25 November), with a sermon for the Dedication of a Church (no. 68) and six additional items which include sermons for occasions such as marriage and burial. The text is followed by the supporting material for both volumes: this comprises explanatory notes, select glossary, a glossary of proper names, various appendices, with two more plates and some additional bibliography.

Volume I was reviewed by me in MM, 80 (20 1 1), 1 66£, and in that otherwise laudatory review I quibbled that Powell might have provided more in the way of manuscript descriptions: in Volume I only the base manuscript, British Library, Cotton Claudius MS All, was described fully, with the other forty-four manuscripts just briefly listed. …

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