Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Governance of Kings and Princes: John Trevisa's Middle English Translation of the 'De Regimine Principum' of Aegidius Romanus

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Governance of Kings and Princes: John Trevisa's Middle English Translation of the 'De Regimine Principum' of Aegidius Romanus

Article excerpt

The Governance of Kings and Princes: John Trevisa's Middle English Translation of the 'De regimine principum' of Aegidius Romanus ed. David C. Fowler, Charles F. Briggs, and Paul G. Remley, Garland Medieval Texts 19 (New York and London: Garland Publishing, 1997). xxix + 439 pp. ISBN 0-8153--1454-x. $85.00. This is Volume I of the first edition of the sole surviving manuscript (Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Digby 233) of John Trevisa's late fourteenth- or early fifteenth-century translation of the thirteenth-century De regimine principum of Aegidius Colonna, here entitled by the editors The Governance of Kings and Princes. The Latin work itself was extremely influential in medieval 'advice to princes' writing. Its three books, dealing with kingly rule of self, household, and realm, offer a strikingly wide-ranging distillation of advice and comment, from the merits of hereditary or elective kingship to the discipline of children. It was an important source for the promulgation and discussion of Aristotelian political principles. The work was widely known in England, but strikingly little translated, Trevisa's translation being the only one unlike the equally popular pseudo-Aristotelian Secretum secretorum, of which numerous fifteenth-century English renditions survive. This first of two volumes presents the whole text along with a short introduction examining the dating of the work itself and this manuscript of it, and setting out editorial conventions. …

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