Contextualising Middle English Liturgical Commentaries

  • Jeremy J. Smith, Dr U. Glasgow
Keywords: Middle English, liturgy, manuscript, codicology, orality and literacy


Important discussions of Middle English miscellanies, with special reference to works of
religious instruction, include, for instance, work by Margaret Connolly (2003, 2011) and
Ralph Hanna (e.g., 1996, 2007, 2010). But much detailed work remains to be done, from
various disciplinary perspectives, to respond to the challenge set inter alia by Thorlac
Turville-Petre forty years ago, viz., to set such works “much more securely and illuminatingly
within [their] local context” (1983, 141). In this paper, part of an ongoing programme
of research into the ‘cultural mapping’ of Middle English writings on the liturgy (see e.g.,
Jasper and Smith 2019, 2023; Smith 2021), a range of verse and prose texts are placed in
their codicological contexts. It will be demonstrated how the forms of these texts correlate
closely with the socio-cultural functions of the manuscripts in which they survive.


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How to Cite
Smith, Jeremy. 2023. “Contextualising Middle English Liturgical Commentaries”. Revista Canaria De Estudios Ingleses, no. 87 (November), 69-86.