S O M E Y E A R S A G O the first volume of our edition of the Chester Cycle appeared; i. a second volume providing Explanatory Notes, English Glossary, and Bibliography will be published under the same auspices as the edition. The present volume presents four essays about various aspects of the cycle, a conveniently regularized transcription of the documents that furnish information about the cycle's development and presentation, and an appendix concerning stanza-forms in the cycle. We are deeply grateful to Richard Rastall of the Department of Music, University of Leeds, for contributing the essay on the important specialist subject of music in the cycle.
References throughout the essays are to our edition. Speech Headings, Stage Directions, and Margin Directions within the Plays are abbreviated as SH, SD, and MD. We have used the same abbreviations for manuscript‐ designation that were used in our edition. They are, in chronological order:
|M||Manchester Fragment; MS. 822. IIC2 I5th century (?)|
|P||Peniarth 399 c. 1500 (?)|
|Hm||Huntington 2 1591|
|A||Additional 10305 1592|
|C||Chester Coopers' Guild 1599|
|R||Harley 2013 1600|
|B||Bodley 175 1604|
|H||Harley 2124 1607|
Because of their similarity, as distinct from H, manuscripts HmARB are called the Group.
We are especially indebted to the staff of the University of North Carolina Press for its counsel and assistance during the editing and production of this book. For preparation of the typescript, we are also grate‐____________________