Anglo-Saxon Prognostics

January 2011
305 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
Anglo-Saxon Texts
ISBN: 9781843842552
Format: Hardback
Library eBook
BISAC LIT011000, HIS037010, HIS015000

Anglo-Saxon Prognostics

An Edition and Translation of Texts from London, British Library, MS Cotton Tiberius A.iii.

Translated by R.M. Liuzza

Edited by R.M. Liuzza

Edition and translation of prognostic guides and calendars, intended as an effort to foretell the future.
Winner of the Beatrice White Prize, 2013.

Medieval prognostic texts - a survival from the classical world - are the ancestors of modern almanacs; a means of predicting future events, they offer guidance on matters of everyday life, such as illness, childbirth, weather, agriculture, and the interpretation of dreams. They give fascinating insights into monastic life, medicine, pastoral care, the transformations of classical learning in the middle ages, and the complex interconnections between orthodox religion, popular belief, science and magic.
This volume provides the first full critical edition, with a facing-page translation, of a diverse and peculiar group of prognostic guides and calendars, in Latin and Old English, found in an eleventh-century manuscript from Christ Church, Canterbury; they are collated with related versions in both Anglo-Saxon and continental manuscripts. A lengthy introduction and commentary examine the transmission and translation of these texts, and shed light on their origins and uses in late Anglo-Saxon monastic culture.

ROY LIUZZA is Professor of English at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

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Table of Contents

List of Manuscripts Referred to by Sigla
Note on Editorial Principles


A handsome and scholarly [volume] that will facilitate research into this fascinating corner of Anglo-Saxon learning. SPECULUM

Liuzza's edition is a major contribution, not only to the study of Anglo-Saxon prognostics themselves, but to our understanding of pre-Conquest intellectual culture more generally. [...] a significant scholarly achievement, one which will help open up for Anglo-Saxonists a new area of study. THE MEDIEVAL REVIEW

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