Writing in Context

Insular Manuscript Culture 500-1200

Edited by Erik Kwakkel

Edited by Erik Kwakkel

Distributed for Leiden University Press

320 pages | 5 3/4 x 7 2/5 | © 2013
Paper $45.00 ISBN: 9789087281823 Published December 2013 For sale only in the United States, its dependencies, the Philippines, and Canada
Gathering essays from prominent scholars of medieval insular manuscripts, Writing in Context explores various aspects of written culture, with the emphasis on the physical appearance, including the development of insular scripts, book culture in Mercia, the layout of Anglo-Saxon charters, and the transition from Anglo-Saxon to Norman-inspired script and book production. Ultimately, the book highlights, in different ways, the relationship between the paleographical and codicological features of manuscripts and the culture in which the objects were produced and used. 
Elaine Treharne | Stanford University
"This collection represents a very valuable contribution to our understanding of early book history in its most capacious sense." 
Jonathan Wilcox | University of Iowa
"This is a strong collection of essays.  The broad topic of the materiality of Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Norman manuscripts is capacious enough to happily embrace the diversity on offer here and yet tight enough to give some kind of chronological, geographical, and methodological cohesion. . . . All in all, this is an interesting volume that contributes to a burgeoning field of manuscript materiality in relation to medieval studies."


List of Figures and Plates



Writing in Context: Introduction

Erik Kwakkel


Mercian Manuscripts:

The Implications of the Staffordshire Hoard, other Recent Discoveries, and the ‘New Materiality’

Michelle P. Brown


An Insular Copy of Pliny’s Naturalis historia

(Leiden VLF 4 fols 4-33)

Mary Garrison


A Giant Among Scribes: Colophon and Iconographical Programme in the Eadui Gospels

Francis Newton


Reading the Unreadable: Lay Literacy and Negotiation of Text in Anglo-Saxon England

Kathryn A. Lowe


English Manuscripts in the Century after the Norman Conquest:

Continuity and Change in the Paleography of Books and Book Collections

Teresa Webber


Hidden in Plain Sight:

Continental Scribes in Rochester Cathedral Priory, 1075-1150

Erik Kwakkel


Notes on the Contributors

Colour Plates

Index of Manuscripts

General Index

For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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