Gildas’s De Excidio Britonum and the early British Church
Title Details

212 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

Series: Studies in Celtic History

Series Vol. Number: 26

Imprint: Boydell Press

Gildas's De Excidio Britonum and the early British Church

by Karen George

  • Description
  • Contents
  • Reviews
A study of a contemporary witness to the transformation of post-Roman Britain into Anglo-Saxon England.
Gildas's De excidio Britonum is a rare surviving contemporary source for the period which saw the beginning of the transformation of post-Roman Britain into Anglo-Saxon England. However, although the De excidio has received much scholarly attention over the last forty years, the value of the text as a primary source for this fascinating if obscure period of British history has been limited by our lack of knowledge concerning its historical and cultural context. In this new study the author challenges the assumption that the British Church was isolated from its Continental counterpart by Germanic settlement in Britain and seeks to establish a theological context for the De excidio within the framework of doctrinal controversy in the early Continental Church. The vexed question of the place of Pelagianism in the early British Church is re-investigated and a case is put forward for a radical new interpretation of Gildas's own theological stance. In addition, this study presents a detailed investigation of the literary structure of the De excidio and Gildas's use of verbal patterns, and argues that his use ofthe Bible as a literary model is at least as significant as his well-documented use of the literary techniques of Classical Latin.

Dr KAREN GEORGE is currently a tutor at the Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education.
Introduction
The Preface
Gildas and the Lamentations of Jeremiah
The construction of the patterns in the DEB
The Historia
The Kings
Gildas and the British Church
The DEB and the Vita Germani
Conclusions
Epilogue
List of sources and bibliography
Appendix
"An important book." SPECULUM
"It will appeal to the theologian, historian and classicist [and] provides essential reading for those studying De Excidio Britonum or the early British Church." ARTHURIANA
"A tightly written new book which explores exciting new aspects of [Gildas's] major surviving work. [...] This is a useful new work which sets out new thinking on the structuring of Gildas's work and seeks to position him within the doctrinal debates of the day. It achieves both aims succinctly and opens interesting new avenues to explore." THE MEDIEVAL REVIEW
"A tightly written new book on the subject of Gildas's De Excidio which explores exciting new aspects of this, his major surviving work. [...] This is a useful new work, therefore, which sets out new thinking on the structuring of Gildas's work and seeks to position him within the doctrinal debates of the day. It achieves both aims succinctly and opens interesting new avenues to explore, and that is an important service in itself, given the problematic nature of this most difficult of early British texts." THE MEDIEVAL REVIEW

Hardcover

9781843834359

February 2009

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Title Details

212 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

Series: Studies in Celtic History

Series Vol. Number: 26

Imprint: Boydell Press