Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Dream of Bernat Metge

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

The Dream of Bernat Metge

Article excerpt

The Dream of Bernat Meige, trans. with introd. and notes by Richard Vernier (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2002). xxxvii + 87 pp. ISBN 0-7546-0691-0. L35.00.

This curiously disjointed but intriguing text by the fourteenth-century Catalan bureaucrat Bernat Metge (no doctor himself, but son of an apothecary and purveyor to the royal court of Peter the Ceremonious) combines, in the form of a fictional dream or vision, self-justification in the face of political and religious embarrassments, an exhibition of classical and patristic learning, and some entertainingly extreme examples of medieval misogyny and its possible (if qualified) refutation. Probably composed between December 1398 and April 1399, when Metge was 58-64 years old, its interest lies partly in its value as a historical document, ranging as it does from matters of court intrigue, royal politics, and papal schism to the reading culture of late fourteenth-century Catalan intellectuals and the fashions and cosmetics of the time. …

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