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Book of Middle English, Second Edition
Synopses & Reviews
This authoritative textbook introduces readers to the wide range of literature written in England between 1150 and 1400.
The book opens with an introduction to the language of the time, designed to enable the reader to understand the representative pieces of Middle English literature that follow. The authors describe the language as it was used in different parts of the country, show how it evolved over this period, and offer guidance on pronunciation, grammar, metre and vocabulary.
Already a standard classroom text, A Book of Middle English has been extensively enhanced for the third edition. The authors have revised key works in light of new editions, updated bibliographic entries, and have added two substantial new extracts, from Pearland from Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde.
This revised edition takes account of suggestions and comments from reviewers and from those who have used the first edition all over the world. The main features of the second edition are the inclusion of etymologies in the glossary and the edition of three complete texts by Chaucer: The Parliament of Fowls, The Reeve's Tale and The Prioress's Tale. Part One has been revised to cover English at the time of Chaucer, and suggestions for further reading have been updated throughout the book.
A Book of Middle English in the short time since its first publication has already gone a long way towards establishing itself as the standard text in the field. This new and revised edition takes account of suggestions and comments from reviewers and from those who have used the first edition all over the world. The main features of the second edition are the inclusion of etymologies in the glossary and the edition of three complete texts by Chaucer: The Parliament of Fowls, The Reeve's Tale and The Prioress's Tale. Part One has been revised to cover English at the time of Chaucer, and suggestions for further reading have been updated throughout the book.
Includes bibliographical references (p. -321).
About the Author
J. A. Burrow is Winterstoke Professor of English at the University of Bristol. Thorlac Turville-Petre is Professor of Medievial English Studies at the University of Nottingham.
Table of Contents
List of illustrations.
Preface to the Third Edition.
1 Introducing Middle English.
1.1 The Period.
1.1.1 From Old to Middle English.
1.1.2 From Middle to Modern English.
1.2 Varieties of Middle English.
1.2.1 Regional Dialects.
1.2.2 Early and Late Middle English.
2 Pronouncing Middle English.
2.2.1 The Long Vowels.
2.2.2 The Short Vowels.
2.2.3 Unstressed Final –e.
2.2.4 The Diphthongs.
3.3 English, French and Latin.
3.4 Latin Loan-Words.
3.5 French Loan-Words.
4.1.1 The Inflexional System.
4.1.2 Loss of Inflexional Endings.
4.2.2 Noun Inflexions: Early Southern Texts.
4.2.3 Developments in Noun Inflexions.
4.2.4 Genitive Singular Without Ending.
4.2.5 Unchanged Plurals.
4.2.6 Mutated Plurals.
4.3 Pronouns and Articles.
4.3.1 Forms of the Personal Pronouns.
4.3.2 First and Second Person Pronouns.
4.3.3 Third Person Pronouns: Masculine and Neuter Singular.
4.3.4 Third Person Pronouns: Feminine Singular.
4.3.5 Third Person Pronouns: Plural.
4.3.6 The Definite Article.
4.3.8 The Indefinite Article.
4.4. Adjectives and Adverbs.
4.4.1 Definite and Indefinite Inflexions.
4.4.2 Inflexions for Case.
4.4.3 Comparison of Adjectives.
4.4.4 Comparison of Adverbs.
4.5.2 Present Tense.
4.5.3 Past Tense and Past Participle.
4.5.4 Past of Weak Verbs.
4.5.5 The Verbs ‘Have’ and ‘Say’.
4.5.6 Past of Strong Verbs.
4.5.7 Irregular Verbs.
4.5.8 The Verb ‘To Be’.
5.3 Use of Cases.
5.3.1 Nominative and Accusative.
5.4 Pronouns and Articles.
5.4.1 Þou and Зe.
5.4.2 Non-expression of Personal Pronouns.
5.4.5 Reflexive Pronouns.
5.4.6 Relative Pronouns.
5.4.7 The Articles.
5.5. Adjectives and Adverbs.
5.5.2 Comparatives and Superlatives.
5.5.3 Adjectives as Nouns.
5.6.1 Use of Present Tense.
5.6.2 Use of Past Tense.
5.6.3 Auxiliaries of the Past.
5.6.4 Auxiliaries of the Future: shall and will.
5.6.5 The Infinitive.
5.6.6 The Subjunctive.
5.6.7 The Imperative.
5.6.8 Impersonal Verbs.
5.6.9 Verbs of Motion.
5.6.10 The Passive.
5.9.2 The Object.
5.9.4 Relative Clauses.
5.9.5 Adverbial Phrases.
5.9.6 Verb in Final Position.
5.10 Recapitulation and Anticipation.
6.2 Rhymed Verse.
6.3 Alliterative Verse.
6.4 LaЗamon’s Brut.
7 From Manuscript to Printed Text.
8 Select Bibliography.
8.1 Bibliographies and Indexes.
8.2 Language Studies.
8.3 General Studies of the Literature.
8.4 Studies of Particular Genres.
8.5 Historical and Social Studies.
Part Two: Prose and Verse Texts:.
Note on Treatment of Texts.
1 The Peterborough Chronicle 1137.
2 The Owl and the Nightingale.
3 LaЗamon: Brut.
4 Ancrene Wisse.
5 Sir Orfeo.
6 The Cloud of Unknowing.
7 William Langland: Piers Plowman.
9 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.
11 St Erkenwald.
12 John Trevisa: Dialogue between a Lord and a Clerk.
13 John Gower: Confessio Amantis.
15 The York Play of the Crucifixion.
16 Geoffrey Chaucer: The Parliament of Fowls.
17 Geoffrey Chaucer: Troilus and Criseyde.
18 Geoffrey Chaucer: The Canterbury Tales.
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