Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Marner-Studien

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Marner-Studien

Article excerpt

Jens Haustein, Marner-Studien, Munchener Texte und Untersuchungen zur deutschen Literatur des Mittelalters log (Tubingen: Max Niemeyer, i995). ix + 285 pp. ISBN 3-484-8909-z. DM 8200.

Under the heading 'Marner', the Codex Mane.rse contains a collection of eightyone important German Spruche (monostrophic poems of a generally didactic nature) from the thirteenth century. Its author(s) cannot be traced in any charters, but must have belonged to the rank of itinerant poets competing for the patronage of nobles and princes. Haustein's monograph, a Gottingen Habilitationsschrift from 1991, has two aims: to give an interpretation of the 'Marner'-eu/re focusing on its literary coherence, and to deal with problems of authorship in the light of recent theoretical discussions. Haustein stresses that he is not interested in biographical questions, but in the aesthetic qualities of the poems. Well aware that in the thirteenth century literary individuality is strongly bound to limits of genre, he judges Der Marner's poetic achievement in terms of the way in which he adapts conventional topics to fit the specific formal requirements of his various Spruche.

The analytical part of the book starts with an examination of Der Marner's self-conception, as expressed by his comments on fellow poets. A cautious chapter is dedicated to the famous strophe XI.3 that accuses Reinmar von Zweter of being a doenediep, a thief of melodies and songs, who has not only stolen but falsified the creations of his more knowledgeable and truthful colleagues (such as Der Marner himself). Haustein draws parallels with a sermon by the contemporary Franciscan Berthold von Regensburg, in which - as in strophe XI. …

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