George Hardin Brown and Linda Ehrsam Voigts, Eds.: The Study of Medieval Manuscripts of England: Festschrift in Honor of Richard W. Pfaff

By Grindley, Carl James | The Journal of the Early Book Society for the Study of Manuscripts and Printing History, Annual 2012 | Go to article overview

George Hardin Brown and Linda Ehrsam Voigts, Eds.: The Study of Medieval Manuscripts of England: Festschrift in Honor of Richard W. Pfaff


Grindley, Carl James, The Journal of the Early Book Society for the Study of Manuscripts and Printing History


GEORGE HARDIN BROWN AND LINDA EHRSAM VOIGTS, EDS.

The Study of Medieval Manuscripts of England: Festschrift in Honor of Richard W. Pfaff.

Arizona Studies in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance 35.

Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2010. ix + 438 pp. 23 B&W illus.

George Hardin Brown and Linda Ehrsam Voigts's Festschrift for Richard W. Pfaff is an impressive collection of sixteen original essays from an extremely diverse group of scholars ranging from seasoned emeriti to a postdoctoral fellow. The collection is very much in keeping with Pfaff's liturgical and historical interests, and is split almost evenly into two sections, the first comprising seven essays on liturgical studies, the second comprising nine more broadly historical essays. The Festschrift's end matter contains a bibliography of Pfaff's published works, brief biographies of the contributors, and several indices.

The volume's editors took a very light hand in introducing Pfaff and in preparing the reader for the dynamic breadth of articles contained within the Festschrift (downplaying, for example, the number of Pfaff's articles by half a dozen). Though I would have preferred a more leisurely introduction to such an important scholar as Pfaff, the articles do speak for themselves and to Pfaff through the level of professionalism and intense expertise. Some of the essays address Pfaff directly, for example, Christopher A. Jones in his work on a redaction of a treatise by Amalarius, and Jaroslav Folda in his article on the historiated initials in Yates Thompson MS. 12. In both, the personal gesture of acknowledging the festschrift's honoree is touching. Although the first half of the volume is slightly more thematic than the second, the eclecticism of the more loosely themed "history" section is nevertheless extremely strong. In the collection as a whole, Elizabeth C. Teviotdale's study of Pembroke College 302 and Joseph Wittig's consideration of the Old English Boethius are standouts among standouts. …

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