Medieval English Literature Week 13

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Medieval English Literature Week 13

  1. 1. Manuscripts and Print <ul><li>Medieval English Literature Week 13 </li></ul>
  2. 2. Making books in the Middle Ages <ul><li>Manuscripts versus Books </li></ul><ul><li>Printing versus Scribes </li></ul><ul><li>Generations of copying texts </li></ul><ul><li>Stemmatics - the study of manuscript </li></ul>
  3. 3. Holograph/Autograph Archetype Exemplar Implied exemplar Relatives/cousins Incunabula
  4. 4. Making medieval manuscripts <ul><li>http://www.getty.edu/art/exhibitions/making/ </li></ul><ul><li>Preparing parchment </li></ul><ul><li>Preparing binding </li></ul><ul><li>Preparing quires </li></ul><ul><li>Writing </li></ul><ul><li>Decorating </li></ul>
  5. 5. Parchment Parchment (sheep) Vellum (cows) Stretch hide Treat/curate Hair side Flesh side
  6. 6. Binding Often leather or wood slats Clasps Jewels/decorations Metal protectors Unbound “booklets”
  7. 7. Quires <ul><li>Nested versus folded </li></ul><ul><li>Bound with strings </li></ul><ul><li>Catchwords </li></ul><ul><li>Collected as booklets </li></ul><ul><li>Quires of 4, 8, 16, 32, etc </li></ul>
  8. 8. Writing <ul><li>Two main writing styles: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Textura </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cursiva </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Mise-en-page </li></ul><ul><li>Single or double-column </li></ul>
  9. 9. Illuminating <ul><li>Illustration vs. illumination </li></ul><ul><li>Decorations: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Historiated initials </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Marginal decoration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Miniatures </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Print <ul><li>First comes to England in 1474 </li></ul><ul><li>William Caxton, ex-patriate, French-speaker </li></ul><ul><li>Saw printing press in Europe </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Johannes Gutenberg: 1441 press </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Moveable type vs. Printing <ul><li>“Printing” invented in China </li></ul><ul><li>Moveable type (use of stamp to create ink imprint); invented in China </li></ul><ul><li>Printing press (mechanical device to repeat printing of single page); invented by Gutenberg </li></ul>
  12. 12. Caxton <ul><li>ca.1420-ca.1492 </li></ul><ul><li>Settled in Bruges by 1453; visited Cologne and saw press </li></ul><ul><li>Relationship to Mercers’ company </li></ul><ul><li>Translated a number of works into English </li></ul>
  13. 13. Le Morte d’Arthur <ul><li>Written by Thomas Malory in prose </li></ul><ul><li>Title “the death of Arthur”, about much more </li></ul><ul><li>English, largely based on French source material </li></ul><ul><li>Tales of Arthurian knights </li></ul>
  14. 14. Parataxis And then Sir Marhaus rode unto his shield, and saw how it was defouled, and said, 'Of this despite I am a part avenged...' and so he hanged it about his neck. Then he rode straight unto Sir Uwain, and asked what they did there. They answered him that they came from King Arthur's court for to see adventures.
  15. 15. Le Morte d’Arthur <ul><li>Paratactic style </li></ul><ul><li>Episodic narrative </li></ul><ul><li>No fictional affectation </li></ul><ul><li>History or myth? </li></ul>
  16. 16. Caxton’s Preface <ul><li>Nationalist narrative </li></ul><ul><li>Affirmation </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction of doubt </li></ul><ul><li>Network of readers and printer </li></ul>

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