Literary Variety and the Writing of History in Britain’s Long Twelfth Century
Title Details

272 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

Series: Writing History in the Middle Ages

Series Vol. Number: 10

Imprint: York Medieval Press

Literary Variety and the Writing of History in Britain's Long Twelfth Century

by Jacqueline M Burek

  • Description
  • Contents
A survey of the different literary forms adopted by history writers after the Conquest, exploring why and for what effects they were used.
Histories of Britain composed during the "twelfth-century renaissance" display a remarkable amount of literary variety (Latin varietas). Furthermore, British historians writing after the Norman Conquest often draw attention to the differing forms of their texts. But why would historians of this period associate literary variety with the work of history-writing?
Drawing on theories of literary variety found in classical and medieval rhetoric, this book traces how British writers came to believe that varietas could help them construct comprehensive, continuous accounts of Britain's past. It shows how Latin prose historians, such as William of Malmesbury, Henry of Huntingdon, and Geoffrey of Monmouth, filled their texts with a diverse array of literary forms, which they carefully selected and ordered in accordance with their broader historiographical aims. The pronounced literary variety of these influential histories inspired some Middle English verse chroniclers, including Laȝamon and Robert Mannyng, to adopt similar principles in their vernacular poetry. By uncovering the rhetorical and historiographical theories beneath their literary variety, this book provides a new framework for interpreting the stylistic and organizational choices of medieval historians.
Introduction: Discontinuous History in the Long Twelfth Century

Part I: Varietas in Latin
1: Varietas: From Roman Rhetoric to British History
2: 'I take it that no one will object to some variety': William of Malmesbury's Gesta regum Anglorum
3: 'Since nothing endures here, pay attention': Henry of Huntingdon's Historia Anglorum
4: 'Continuously and in order': Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia regum Britanniae

Part II: Variety in Middle English
5: 'Three texts into one': Laʒamon's Brut
6: 'Of diuers kynd': Robert Mannyng's Story of Inglande
Conclusions: The Rhetoric of Discontinuity?

Bibliography
Index

Hardcover

9781914049101

January 2023

£70.00 / $105.00

Available to pre-order from October 2022

Shipping Options

Sorry,

We can’t fulfil orders to any location in North or South America at the moment – we are improving our customers’ shopping experience.
We apologise for the disruption, we should be back up-and-running again in mid-August.

Please make use of our special 50% off ebooks sale in the meantime.

Use code BB062 in the shopping cart on ANY ebook.

Buy

Purchasing options are not available in this country.

Ebook (EPDF)

9781800108745

January 2023

£19.99 / $24.99

Available to pre-order from October 2022

Shipping Options

Sorry,

We can’t fulfil orders to any location in North or South America at the moment – we are improving our customers’ shopping experience.
We apologise for the disruption, we should be back up-and-running again in mid-August.

Please make use of our special 50% off ebooks sale in the meantime.

Use code BB062 in the shopping cart on ANY ebook.

Buy

Purchasing options are not available in this country.

Ebook (EPUB)

9781800108752

January 2023

£19.99 / $24.99

Available to pre-order from October 2022

Shipping Options

Sorry,

We can’t fulfil orders to any location in North or South America at the moment – we are improving our customers’ shopping experience.
We apologise for the disruption, we should be back up-and-running again in mid-August.

Please make use of our special 50% off ebooks sale in the meantime.

Use code BB062 in the shopping cart on ANY ebook.

Buy

Purchasing options are not available in this country.

Title Details

272 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

Series: Writing History in the Middle Ages

Series Vol. Number: 10

Imprint: York Medieval Press