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Broken cups, men's wrath, and the neighbours' revenge: the case of Thomas and Alice Dey of Alverthorpe (1383).

Literature and sermons about wrath were attractive to medieval people because they mirrored and amplified life in satisfactory ways: villains were punished, insults were avenged, and honour was restored. Tales of wrath and vengeance often drew the medieval audience directly into the intimate relationships and the homes of the characters affected by wrath. A Dominican exemplum recounts how God punished gamblers for defaming his mother Mary within his own home (the temple). (1) The Welsh vengeance-quest of Peredur begins when a knight-errant enters Arthur's home (the court) and assaults Arthur's wife Queen Gwenhwyvar. (2) The Wakefield master allows his audience to view the domestic conflict of Noah and his Uxor as they fight fiercely and comically about the ark. (3) In reality, wrath in the medieval communal sphere was more banal than remarkable. Medieval English manorial court records are replete with unneighbourly ill will and feuding over seemingly trivial issues; a few pence owed here, a fence post stolen there. Despite the large number of cases in which blood was drawn between neighbours and villagers, few court cases were concerned with the forms of insult, violence, and wrath that took place within the homes of manorial tenants. This disparity between the domestic intimacy of literature and sermons and the realities of the local courts is curious. This article considers how one community's intervention into the wrathful relations of a local family illustrates the complex intersections between beliefs about gender, wrath, and vengeance, and the barrier between domus and communitas.

Historians of domestic conflict, a term which many continue to read as a polite way of saying wife-beating, have tended to explain the paucity of cases of domestic assault in terms of women's social subordination and coverture within the household and under the law. (4) Patriarchs, even petty ones, were expected to govern their households actively, and wives were not exempt from their correction. In other words, what we would consider assault was understood as correction: it was both a man's duty and his right. In broad terms, there is no quarrel with the subordination explanation for the low numbers of husband contra wife cases presented in medieval English courts. However, an examination of the discourse on domestic anger in moral and didactic literature suggests that husbands, as well as wives, operated under considerable patriarchal constraint. If medieval men were reluctant to interfere with the right of other men to govern their families, the moral literature concerned with wrath and angry husbands helps us to understand why this might be the case. Reading legal cases in conjunction with this literature is particularly useful.

Let us look at the late-fourteenth-century case of publicly fined wife-beater Thomas Dey. In 1383, John de Southwood, constable for the township of Alverthorpe in the manor of Wakefield, reported at the tourn that Thomas Dey had beaten and drawn blood (traxit sanguinem) from his wife Alice Dey. (5) The jury were in agreement with the constable, yet fined Thomas the rather inconsequential amount of three pence. Had Thomas drawn blood from another man's wife, the Wakefield jury would normally have fined him between four and six times that amount. Fine aside, the unusual nature of Thomas Dey's presentation cannot have been lost on the Alverthorpe community in which he and Alice lived. Between 1323 and 1410, thousands of men living on the Wakefield manor were reported and fined for fighting with other men and women who were not their wives. (6) Obviously, no one was keeping track of the annual cases of fighting dating back to 1323 as I have done, but within living memory in Alverthorpe Township where Thomas lived, his case was singular. On the day he appeared at court there were nine other men fined for fighting with unrelated people. (7) In the previous ten years, 122 fights had been reported, but none of those fights involved a husband abusing his wife. (8) In fact, I know of only one other case of wife-beating reported in Alverthorpe in 1339, which was unlikely common knowledge so many years later. (9) What had Thomas Dey done to attract the attention of his neighbours?

The fact that we are dealing with neighbours is significant. The manor court was more than a group of unknown officials handing down fines upon unfamiliar tenants. Only the Wakefield steward was an outsider. Jurors, especially inquest jurors, constables, bailiffs, and reeves were all elected or appointed from within the community. Although not all of these men were from the same township within the large manor of Wakefield, those from Alverthorpe and its neighbouring townships would have known personally either Thomas and his wife Alice or members of their family. Moreover, since all tenants were obliged to attend their lord's court, all of the heads-of-households, which included widows and single landholding women, were also present at the manor court. Hence, on his day in court, Thomas was in the company of his Alverthorpe neighbours and relations, along with the tenants from the surrounding townships. It must not escape our notice that this group of people were assembled in their parish church of All Saints. (10) In other words, Thomas Dey was publicly presented for abusing his own wife in the same space where his parish priest set out the essentials of the faith and the mortal dangers of failing to practice them. Even before arriving at his church, Thomas had to pass through the crossroads and market centre, perennial venues for mendicant preachers, who also admonished the vice-ridden to repent of their ways.

In such a setting the clerical litany on the vices must have hovered just beneath the surface of the court proceedings, entering the thoughts of many in attendance, especially since so many tenants' offences--quarrelling with ones' neighbours, fighting, and bloodshed--were also well-known vices. For this reason, and because it sheds light on the social conceptions of anger, we must examine the description in vernacular moral treatises of the angry man who beats his wife.

From the late thirteenth century on, the vernacular description of wrath nearly always combines the following elements: a man consumed with anger becomes so irrational that he destroys his drinking vessels, pots, and pans. In this state he beats his wife, children, servants, and sometimes even his loyal dog. Clearly he is a raving madman.

Consider the description of wrath in the Speculum vitae, which was in circulation in the last quarter of the fourteenth century and roughly contemporary with Thomas Dey's case.
 Ire styrs a man agayn his men?e ... [his] wyf and barnes ... And
 his seruants ... / Bot when a man ys moued thurghe ire / Agayn pam
 pan fares he as fyre, / He bannes, and betys, and lays on pam, /
 And fares as he ware a wode man / What wesselle he brekys he gyfs
 neuer tale, /Bath pottys and coppys he lynes nan hale / He fares as
 he ware in wodnes. (11)

 [Ire stirs a man against his household ... {his} wife and children
 ... and his servants ... when a man is moved through ire against
 them, then he behaves as one enflamed. He curses and beats and
 reigns blows on them and he behaves as though he was a mad man. He
 pays no heed to which vessels he breaks, both pots and cups he
 leaves in shards. He behaves as if he was a lunatic.] (Unless
 otherwise stated, translations are by the author.)


That this description was standard fare for moralists is clear from its longevity. It was repeated in countless fourteenth- and fifteenth-century expositive texts that were drawn directly or indirectly from the Somme le Roi, which was itself among the most widely copied and translated works of the late middle ages.

In the Kentish Ayenbite of Inwit (1340) Michael Northgate translated the word ire as "hatred." Northgate's translation indicates that internalized hatred produces inner torment, which leads to spiritual and physical emaciation and possibly suicide. (12) When inner torment is turned outward the result is loss of reason, followed by a kind of dementia that leads a man to abuse his inferiors, namely his wife, children, and servants. A man in this state breaks pots, cups, and dishes as though he has lost his wits. (13) Wrath and violence in the domestic sphere is followed by outward strife, quarrelling between neighbours and the desire for vengeance, all of which lead to manslaughter and eventually warfare. (14)

The late-fourteenth-century Book of Vices and Vertues describes wrath as a "felonie of herte" which results in self-destruction, God hatred, beating one's mein, and fighting:
 The third war that and angry man has is against those that are
 under him, that is his wife and his mayne, because such a man
 is so mad (oberwhile wod) that he smites and beats his wife,
 children and servants and breaks pots, cups and dishes and all
 that he may set his hand on, like a man who was out of his
 wits. (15)


The Myrour to Lewde Men and Wymmen (ca. 1400) repeats the story: "Anger stirs a man against ... his wife, children and servants; for when a man is stirred, then he fares as if on fire: he curses, he beats, he chides, breaks vessels, pots, and cups and he behaves like a mad man." (16) Although there are many more examples, the late-fifteenth-century Middle English Mirroure of the Worlde will offer a conclusion: "Far whan ire bereth on hym he beteth women and childer, the which hatthe not trespassed to hym; his dogge and his carte he torneth vppe so downe; he breketh pottes and cuppes and al that euer he may kacche in his handes. Is he not owte of his witte?" (17) [For when ire bears down on him he beats women and children who have not injured him; he topples his dog and cat; he breaks pots and cups and everything on which he can lay his hands. Is he not out of his senses?]

That this description, set out in the late-thirteenth-century Somme reappears with slight embellishments in successive translations of the work may only prove that medieval translators were faithful to their source. However, it is instructive that similar and expanded descriptions of the angry man continued to be written into works that were not direct translations, but were new compilations, such as The Mirroure of the Worlde and Jacob's Well. (18) A man's destruction of the cups, pots, and other vessels along with physical abuse of his family, even his domestic animals clearly conveyed something of significance about the nature of male anger to medieval moral writers and, through their texts to a wider audience of preachers and their flock.

In a world where work was divided by gender, why was it important to the discourse on wrath that men shatter the cups, pots, and drinking vessels associated with the hearth, cooking, and women's work, rather than knocking down their neighbours fences, or demolishing farming implements and other tools or weapons associated with men's trades? The two explanations must be considered different, but not mutually exclusive. First, male anger was associated with the destruction of the domestic wares traditionally linked with women and women's work in order to convey power of anger to reduce men to an irrational and more feminine state of existence. Second, the destruction of cooking pots and drinking vessels symbolized the shattering of both domestic and communal conviviality, which were fundamental to cooperative civil and Christian society. In both cases, the destruction of cups and vessels signified a man's inability to govern himself and, therefore, his inability to govern others.

By the fourteenth century, wrath had long been explained in terms of unnatural internal transformation or, in medical terms, by an internal imbalance, an excess of passions, or illness. The author of the Ancrene Wisse wrote that wrath was a shape shifter (Wreadde is a forschuppilt). It drew reason out of a man and changed him completely; he was no longer a man but had the nature of a beast. "By nature man is mild, but when he loses his mild heart he loses his nature and then wrath, the shape-shifter, changes him into a beast." (19)

At the beginning of the fourteenth century, Robert Manning of Brun wrote in Handlying Synne, that wrath was the result of a melancholic nature, suggesting that anger stemmed from a constitutional proclivity. (20) A century and a half later the explanation of melancholy still made sense to Peter Idle, who, although he heavily edited his source, repeated Handlyng Sin's explanation of melancholy as one root of rage, when preparing a book of advice for his son. (21)

In the middle of the fourteenth century, the Archbishop Thorseby advised that wrath was "a wiked stirryng of bolnyng of hert / Whare-thrugh a man wilnesse for to take wrake / Or wickedly to venge him opon his euen-cristen." (22) [... a wicked stirring of a boiling hart, which causes a man to wish to take vengeance or wickedly to revenge himself upon his fellow Christians.] By describing--in English and Latin--this boiling and stirring within the sinner Thorseby intended his Yorkshire curates and their parishioners (men like Thomas Dey) to recognize that anger was an inner physical state, a passion, which when unchecked, literally moved the person experiencing it to act aggressively. "And of this syn comes struyng, and flityng, / With mony fals and mony foule wordes; Sklaundir, for to fordo a mannes gode fame, / Feghtyng, and felony and oft mannes slaughter." [And from this sin comes quarrelling and arguing accompanied by many false and foul words, also slander for the purpose of ruining someone's good reputation and also fighting and felony and often manslaughter.]

The Ayenbite of Inwit, Book of Vices and Virtues, and the Speculum vitae, all connect wrath with illness, spiritual atrophy, and the reduction of reason. (23) At the end of the fourteenth century, William Langland's personification of Wrath, in the B and C versions of Piers Ploughman, connected illness with the cooler and moister constitution ascribed to the female body. Langland's Wrath was a paragon of the phlegmatic disposition, with his white eyes, running nose (niuilyng[e] nose), and gnawed lips (nippynge his lippes). (24) Like angry men destroying objects associated with women's work, Langland's wrath gravitates towards the women's side of the church: "Among wives and widows / I'm used to sitting / Parked in the pews." (25)

In the late fifteenth century the author of Mirroure of the Worlde was still thinking in humoural terms: just as all illness comes form the "distempering" of the four humours in the human body, all the vices come from the "distempering" of the virtues. (26) This idea, passed down for centuries, communicated that an overabundance of passion and lack of self-control resulted in a man's loss of reason. Moral writers copied or retold the story of the angry man raging in the female sphere of duty and destroying the very cups and pots necessary for the provision of his own daily nourishment, because the story clearly and swiftly communicated the degree to which excessive passion had altered his physical constitution from one who governs to one who ought to be governed. For a medieval audience the story would have readily called to mind other scenes of domestic discord, like the smashing and banging of pots and pans that accompanied rough music and rough justice of a neighbourhood or village against foolish husbands dominated by their wives.

While the evidence supports such a gendered reading of the message conveyed to medieval audiences through the story of the wrathful husband tossing his wife's cups, pots, and pans, It is possible to suppose that gender transformation was only part of the tales' messages. The hearth or kitchen was a female space, but it could also be a metaphor for hell, with its boiling cauldrons, smoke, and fire. An irrational, wrathful sinner, breaking cups in the kitchen was almost certainly a man en route to hell. The evidence of his damnation was in the act of destroying the very vessels which contained his daily sustenance and which also symbolized his largess among his peers and his own fellowship at the Christian table.

In both Old and Middle English literature, drinking cups and other vessels were symbolic of both prosperity and peace. Ideally, passing the drinking cup or horn in a communal feast strengthened the bonds between men. (27) One might even argue that the literary ideal of the largess of cups was embodied in actual late-medieval church-ales or charitable-ales. (28)

Aside from the famous cups and grails of Middle English literature, which were intended to be objects of note, the cups and vessels passed round at communal feasting, drinking, and celebrating were so much a part of the represented fabric of noble largess and friendship that one scarcely takes note of them. In the tale of Peredur, when the knight-errant arrived at Arthur's hall the court was feasting as usual. It was the knight's rejection of the feast which was unusual and, in addition to his aggression toward Gwenhyvar, it was his misuse of the shared cup that defined him as truly errant. To speak of a man angrily and irrationally smashing his own cups and pots, and beating his wife and familia is to speak of his rejection of his duty as the founder of the feast. His wanton destruction disorders the space into which he might have welcomed relatives, friends, and neighbours. It indicates his rejection of communitas.

In our time of plenty we may easily overlook the significance of the shared meal, but medieval people were better acquainted with the vagaries of the harvest and more familiar with the suddenly empty chair. The wrathful man's breaking of his family's cups and pots rendered them useless for the daily gift of the shared meal, which, in a very basic way, re-enacted the Passover feast and the last supper. Within the Christian communitas the cup symbolized acceptance of responsibility and God's will; just as Jerusalem accepted the cup of God's wrath, Christ accepted the cup of martyrdom (Matthew 26:39). Hence, in breaking his own cups, pots, and pans, the sinner symbolically rejected the redeeming cup of Christ, the Eucharist, and his own place within the Christian community.

Amidst these thoughts, let us not forget about Thomas Dey, fined before his community, while standing in the nave of his parish church. Since we know that generations of preachers drew on the stock images of wrath found in the great mendicant collections and in vernacular expositive treatises, we should not rule out the possibility that the wrathful moral failings of Thomas Dey weighed on the minds of more than one of his neighbours, although perhaps not for the reasons medieval moralists might have hoped. In forming this opinion, it is well to remember that in medieval villages it was almost always the neighbours, who reported one another's offences to their local constables or bailiffs. At some point, some of Thomas Dey's neighbours questioned his customary right to discipline his wife. Thomas had crossed the line from domestic governor to commonly governable.

As a feminist historian, I would like to think that Thomas and Alice's neighbours were engaging in their own version of an intervention in a serious case of abuse. Unfortunately, all the evidence points to his neighbours' desire to report Thomas's abuse of Alice as a method of humiliating him and publicly declaring him an uncontrolled and irrational "girlie man." I suspect this because Thomas was no stranger to the courts in cases which might best be classified under the heading of "public nuisance." He was in debt, he skipped out on the elections of the reeve, he stole firewood, and most outrageously--and it must be noted most immediately before his community reported him for beating Alice--Thomas was reported for depositing, next to the common spring, a large heap of pig manure, which contaminated the water. (29) Manorial court records are extremely spare of detail, so it is impossible to say how intense or prolonged and feud-like the conflict over the manure pile was between Thomas and his Alverthorpe neighbours. Contaminating the local water supply was a serious affair. Until it was determined to be clean, water would have to be hauled from further off, adding to the burdens of the community's women and children who hauled the water for their family's daily needs.

There are many ways one might interpret Thomas's actions and his neighbours' responses. Medieval vernacular literature, particularly the Arthurian tales, emphasize that when insult is added to injury, redress must follow, especially when one's kin suffer insult. Didactic portrayals of the physical alterations brought about through sinful activities (such as expressing excessive anger) reveal widely disseminated attitudes toward power, gender, and reason. Working from the backdrop of these contemporary ideas, Thomas's story might be read in the following way: by contaminating the common spring Thomas contaminated the contents of his neighbours' cups and drinking vessels and offered insult to his neighbours' wives and families, whose domestic burdens would be increased through his actions. His behaviour was an overt rejection of reason and communitas, which adversely affected all people near the spring, including Thomas and his own family. Thomas's abuse of Alice merely confirmed what his community already knew: he was like the "wood-man" in preachers' sermons, who harmed those he was supposed to protect; who offered insult to his neighbours; and who potentially drew the whole community into conflict. Naturally, redress must follow and what better forum for revenge than a legitimate one in the form of the manor court.

It is striking that Thomas Dey is one of only two Wakefield men in seventy-eight years of records to be accused of beating his own wife. That the steward (an outsider to the community) fined him a relatively small amount probably indicates his reluctance to interfere with a man's right to discipline his wife. The people who knew Thomas and reported him had no such hesitation, because they had already formed a low opinion of his character. His fine, which disappeared into their lord's coffers, must have raised little interest; rather it was Thomas's public exposure as a bad husband, one who was unworthy of the powers and privileges attached to that role, which satisfied his neighbours' need for just vengeance.

The enduring motif in vernacular expositive literature of the irrational and irate man attacking his own household and breaking his own cups and pots in the kitchen emphasizes medieval English social awareness of the hazards of allowing passion to overturn reason and interfere with good governance. One can speculate that, among many possible reasons for the paucity of reported domestic disputes, one was the social reluctance to challenge a man's right to express anger or seek redress for perceived injury within his own home. However, the moral teaching that too much anger resulted in the abdication of reason (and, therefore, the loss of authority) opened a man's home and actions to public censure. Not only was the angry man a poor husband, he was a failed man and a failed Christian. When a community did report a man for abusing his wife, as in the case of Thomas and Alice Dey, the proceedings must have been fraught with meaning for all involved.

(1) John Gobi (ed. Anne Polo de Beaulieu), La Scala Coeli de Jean Gobi (Paris, 1991), no. 163, p. 228; see also herein Marc Cels, "God's Wrath against the Wrathful in Medieval Mendicant Preaching," pp. 217-26.

(2) Glenys Witchard Goetinck (ed.), Historia Peredur vab Efrawc (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 1976); see also herein Michael Cichon, "Mishandled Vessels: Heaving Drinks and Hurling Insults in Medieval Welsh Literature and Law" pp. 227-40.

(3) Processus Noe cum Filiis, in A.C. Cawley (ed.), The Wakefield Pageants in the Townley Cycle (Manchester, 1958), I, pp. 14-28; 11, pp. 224-25.

(4) For a discussion of recent scholarship on medieval marital abuse see Sara M. Butler, The Language of Abuse: Marital Violence in Later Medieval England (Leiden, 2007). If the records are rare on wife abuse they are all but nonexistent for husband abuse, although the research on modem partner abuse suggests that women physically abuse their partners far more often than one might imagine, and my research on Wakefield hints at a similar pattern. See Martin S. Fiebert, "References Examining Assaults by Women on Their Spouses or Male Partners: An Annotated Bibliography," Sexuality & Culture, 8 (2004), pp. 140-76.

(5) The bi-annual tourn (a disciplinary court) was normally held at the same time as the regular manor court, which met every third week to deal with seigniorial business. On the function of the Wakefield courts, refer to the introductions to the published rolls, the first of which was edited by William Paley Baildon (ed. and cal.) The Court Rolls of the Manor of Wakefield, vol. 1, 1274 to 1297, Yorkshire Archaeological Society, Rolls Series, no. 29 (Leeds, 1901). For Thomas Dey's presentation see Leeds, Yorkshire Archaeological Society, MD225/1/109 fol.2r [hereafter cited as MD 225/1/etcetera].

(6) 1,948 men were presented for aggression in 74 years of tourns. See Sharon Wright, " 'And They Say She Drew Blood:' Women, Aggression and the Vice of Wrath on the Wakefield Manor, 1323 to 1410" (PhD diss. University of Toronto, 2007); note especially chapters 6 and 7.

(7) MD/225/1/109 fol. 2r..

(8) MD/225/1/98 fol. 13r.; 99 fol. 4d., 11r., and 11d.; 100 fol. 2d.; 102 fol. 2r., and 7r.; 103 fol. 3d., and 4r.; 104 fol. 2d, and 6r.; 105 fol. 2r., and 7d.; 106 fol. 1d, and 8d.; 108 fol. ld., 2r., and 7r

(9) MD 225/1/64 fol. 15r-15d.

(10) The courts of many English manors were held in parish churches or moot halls in their market centres which were also centres of information exchange. See Zvi Razi and Richard Michael Smith (eds.), Medieval Society and the Manor Court (Oxford, 1996).

(11) John W. Smeltz, Speculum vitae: an edition of British Museum manuscript Royal 17c. viii (PhD diss., Duquesne University, 1977), ll, pp. 4669-75.

(12) Richard Morris (ed.), Ayenbite of Inwyt or Remorse of Conscience, Early English Texts Society, Old Series, no. 23 (London, 1866; 1888 reprint), pp. 29-30 [hereafter cited as AI]. "be uerste is / to him-zelue. Uor huanne man/him berp hate / ... an makep him ualle / ine ane feure / oper ine zuiche zor?e : pet he nimp / pane dyap.".

(13) AI, 30 "pe pridde werre / pet pe wrepuolle hep. Is to pan / pet pyep onder him. pet is / to his wyue/ and to his mayne."

(14) AI, 30 "Vor huanne per is werre / betuene tuay men : hit yualp ofte / pet per byep moche uolke dyade."

(15) Dominican Laurent and W. Nelson Francis, The Book of Vices and Virtues: A Fourteenth Century English Translation of the Somme Le Roi. Early English Texts Society, old series, no. 217 (Oxford, 1942), pp. 25-26. "be pridde werre bat a wrop man hap is to hem bat bep vnder hym, as to his wif and his mayne, for such a man is operwhile wod bat he smyt and betep his wif, his children, his seruauntes, and brekep pottes, coppes, and disches, and al pat he may sette hond on, as a man pat were out of his witte."

(16) Venetia Nelson (ed.), A myrour to lewde men and wymmen: a prose version of the Speculum vitae, Middle English Texts, volume 14 (Heildelberg, 1981), p. 116. "?it ire stireb a man a?enst his meyne, as his wyf, his children and his seruantes, for when a man is stired [wip ire a?enst hem] pan farep he as fuyre: he corseth, he betith, he chidep, brekep vesselles, pottis & cuppis & all pat he may mete with as a wood man as he is."

(17) Robert R. Raymo, Elaine E. Whitaker, and Ruth E. Sternglantz (eds.), The Mirroure of the Worlde: A Middle English Translation of Le miroir du monde. Medieval Academy Books, no. 106 (Toronto, 2003), volume II, pp. 3443-50: "[Of the Werre That He Hath to Hys Meny] The iii were that the irous man hath is to thoo that be vner hym: to his wife, to his meny, yea and yet to doumbe beestys. Far whan ire bereth on hym he beteth women and childer, the which hatthe not trespassed to hym; his dogge and his catte he torneth vppe so downe; he breketh pottes and cuppes and al that euer he may kacche in his handes. Is he not owte of his witte? It were grete almes to bynde hym."

(18) Mirroure, 2003; Arthur Brandeis (ed.), Jacob's Well: An English Treatise on the Cleansing of Man's Conscience, Early English Text Society, 115 (London, 1900).

(19) J.R.R. Tolkien (ed.), Ancrene Wisse: The English Text of the Ancrene Riwle, Early English Text Society, no. 249 (Oxford, 1962), p. 64. "for ha reaued mon his wit & changed al his chere. & forschupped him from mon; in to beastes cunde ... Mon cundelich is milde. Sone se he loesed mildheortnesse; he leosed monnes cunde. Ant wreadd pe forschuppilt forschupped him in to beast".

(20) Robert Mannyng of Brunne, Robert of Brunne's 'Handlyng Synne', A.D. 1303: With those Parts of the Anglo-French Treatise on which it was Founded. William of Wadington's 'Manuel des Pechiez', Early English Text Society, Original series, no. 119 (London, 1901) II, pp. 3711-13 "pe man bat wrappyp hym lyghtly / for lytyl, as yn malencoly,/ pat synne ne ys nat ryght gref."

(21) Peter Idley, Peter Idley's Instructions to His Son, Modern Language Association of America. Monograph Series, no. 6 (Boston, 1935) II, pp. 380-82 "The nexte synne and the seconde is Ire / Replete with malencolie, suche is his nature; / A brennyng stomake as hoote as the fire.

(22) John de Thorseby, Archbishop of York, The Lay Folk's Catechism, Early English Text Society, old series, 118 (London, 1901), 90. ll. pp. 483-91.

(23) Speculum vitae II, pp. 4660-62 "Ne confort in his heft my synke, / Bot falles perchance in seknes sone / For his wille loan may no?t be done."

(24) William Langland, Piers the Plowman: Will's visions of Piers Plowman, do-well, do-better and do-best, vol. 2, Piers Plowman: the B Version, ed. George Kane and E. Talbot Donaldson, and vol. 3 Piers Plowman: The C Version, ed. George Russell and George Kane (London, 1975, 1997), C Version, Pas. VI, ll. pp. 103-4.

(25) Verse translation by George Economou, William Langland's Peirs Plowman: The C Version (Philadelphia, 1996), pp. 52-53.

(26) AI, 151-152. "Thus when the two sides of the heart are well ordered (acorded) and governed (y-ordayned), that is when reason (scele) governs will, then a man is properly ordered."

(27) Hugh Magennis, "The Cup as Symbol and Metaphore in Old English Literature" Speculum, 60 (1985), pp. 517-36.

(28) Judith Bennett "Conviviality and Charity in Medieval and Early Modern England" Past and Present, 134 (1992), pp. 19-41.

(29) MD 225/1/106 fol. 1r, 2r; MD 225/1/108 fol. 1r and 1d.

Sharon Hubbs Wright (PhD Toronto) is an assistant professor of medieval history and member of the Classical, Medieval and Renaissance Studies program at St. Thomas More College, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon.
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