Books and Libraries in Early England: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Books and Libraries in Early England

1st Edition

By Helmut Gneuss


328 pages

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Hardback: 9780860786023
pub: 1996-12-31
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The essays in this second volume from Helmut Gneuss are devoted to the study of books, their readers, and libraries in medieval England, especially in the Anglo-Saxon period. The selection opens with a survey of the history of the medieval English library, followed by detailed studies of Anglo-Saxon book production. These also examine its relation in the 9th century to King Alfred's plan for educational reform, and to the intellectual history of the 10th century. Two articles deal with liturgical books, and include the standard classified list of liturgical manuscripts. To end, there is an analysis of the earliest modern catalogue of books with Old English texts, that by George Hickes, and an investigation of the history of the Latin hymnal in Britain.


Of Books and Libraries and Language and History: 'I have nothing but praise for these two volumes which make widely available some of the most significant contributions to Anglo-Saxon studies of the last forty years.' Notes and Queries, Vol. 46, No. 1 '…this book conveniently archives the indispensable work, both general and specific, of a prolific and original scholar.' Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America 'Gneuss’s impressive and seemingly comprehensive knowledge of early English book production and libraries permeates every page of the volume….Gneuss [has] compiled a rich and diverse scholarly work that will find its way onto the shelves of all major research libraries.' Libraries and Culture, Vol. 34, No. 4

Table of Contents

Contents: Foreword; Englands Bibliotheken im Mittelalter und ihr Untergang; Anglo-Saxon libraries from the conversion to the Benedictine Reform; King Alfred and the history of Anglo-Saxon libraries; Bücher und Leser in England im zehnten Jahrhundert; Liturgical books in Anglo-Saxon England and their Old English terminology; Linguistic borrowing and Old English lexicography: Old English terms for the books of the liturgy; Zur Geschichte des Ms. Vespasian A. I.; Dunstan und Hrabanus Maurus: Zur Hs. Bodleian Auctarium F.4.32; Die Handschrift Cotton Otho A. XII; Der älteste Katalog der angelsächsischen Handschriften und seine Nachfolger; Latin hymns in medieval England: future research; Index.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General