Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Walter of Châtillon: The Shorter Poems. Christmas Hymns, Love Lyrics, and Moral-Satirical Verse

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Walter of Châtillon: The Shorter Poems. Christmas Hymns, Love Lyrics, and Moral-Satirical Verse

Article excerpt

Walter of Châtillon: The Shorter Poems. Christmas Hymns, Love Lyrics, and Moral-Satirical Verse, ed. and trans. David A. Traill, Oxford Medieval Texts (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2013). cxiii + 349 pp. ISBN 978-0-19-929739. £95.00. This new edition, together with a facing English translation, of the poems of one of the most significant Latin poets of the later twelfth century is much to be welcomed. Hitherto we have been reliant on the editions by Karl Strecker, his Lieder Walters von Châtillon from 1925, with the 33 anonymous lyrics attributable to Walter in a Saint-Omer collection (MS 351), and his Moralisch-satirische Gedichte Walters von Châtillon from 1929, which contains some 20 further poems taken from a large number of scattered manuscript sources. The first section of David Traill's edition consists of the poems from the Saint-Omer manuscript, followed by 34 'Poems from various sources', nos 34-54 of which correspond to Strecker's second collection. The attribution of these and the 13 'new' poems for whom Walter's authorship has been claimed in more recent scholarship, and by Traill, is based on a variety of criteria such as manuscript attributions, proximity to well authenticated poems in the manuscripts, and stylistic affinity (of various kinds). Other texts that have been considered to be Walter's (for example the attributions proposed by Wilmart from a previously unknown Charleville manuscript) are excluded on stylistic grounds, or on the basis of the acceptance of competing attributions to other poets such as Philip the Chancellor and in one case Jordan Fantasma. …

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