John Mirk's Festial: edited from British Library MS Cotton Claudius A.II
Oxford University Press, 2009 - Literary Collections - 188 pages
The Festial, most probably composed in the late 1380s by the Augustinian canon, John Mirk, of Lilleshall Abbey, Shropshire, was the most popular and influential collection of sermons in English in the late medieval and early Tudor period, surviving in many copies, and printed by Caxton and his successors. The collection was designed to be accessible and entertaining, as well as orthodox, to counter the success of Lollard preaching, and taught both the priests who used the sermons, as well as their audiences, the fundamentals of the Christian faith and doctrine, illustrated by many stories. The Festial is is the only English sermon collection to be printed in England before the Reformation and is probably the most frequently printed work of its time, before religious change made it unacceptable.
This new edition, in two volumes with full editorial apparatus, supersedes the incomplete EETS edition by Theodor Erbe (E.S. 96 (1905)). Volume 1 contains the Introduction and the first half of the text; Volume 2 (to be published in 2010) will contain the remainder of the text, Explanatory Notes, and Glossary.
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LIST OF PLATES
THE FESTIAL MANUSCRIPTS AND SIGLA
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3e schul 3ere 3ode 3oure a3eyne aftyr anone b>an b>en badde blode byfore byschop chyld comen comforde comyn criston Cryste dayes dede deth doun emperoure ensaumpul fadur faston fende furst fyre Goddes Goddus Goddys gode gret grete Group A manuscripts Hand hath haue herte heuen heven Holy Chyrch Holy Gost hure hymself Iewes Ihesu Criste Iohn kyng Lady leue Lilleshall loue lyue makuth makyth mekely mercy Middle English Mirk Mirk's modur myche myght Narracio neuer nyght obur opur owte p>an p>en paraph pepul pere Petur pis day poght priest redy ryght Sanctorale sayde sayth schal scheo schewed schulde segh sermons Seynt sone sory St Winifred synne Thomas toke tyme vche vpon watur weren weron whan Wherefore whyl wolde womman worchep wyche wylle wyst wyth wyth hym wythoute