Pursuing History: Middle English Manuscripts and Their Texts

This volume argues, through a series of selected local studies, for the importance of textual criticism as a fundamental act of historical interpretation and recovery, pointing out the need for attention to the physical bearers of our knowledge of the English Middle Ages, the books themselves, and the ignored and alienating features of manuscript culture. It examines medieval book production, the textual uses of manuscripts, the nature of medieval meditations, and looks in detail at work by Chaucer and Langland. In conclusion the volume considers the problem of textual annotation in the light of both history and literary theory.