The romanz Psalter in England and Northern France in the twelfth century: production, mise-en-page, and circulation.
Since the publication in 1860 of Francisque Michel's edition of the Oxford Psalter, philologists have assigned these Psalter translations a prominent place in the history of the language, but the Psalters have not taken a comparable place in literary histories, possibly as a result of the lingering habit of separating the devotional and the pedagogical from the domain of the literary. (5) But, as we see below, the Psalms were every bit as poetic as they were devotional in the period, and the bustling energies that gave us these translations were inseparable from the new, courtly vernacular literary culture. These romanz Psalters emerged from the same social contexts as other literary works of this early period, sharing similar reading practices, as well as material and even rhetorical forms. As I will argue, just as the "'Englishing,' of the biblical Psalms" would do in "sixteenth- and seventeenth-century England," so the 'romancing' of the Psalms "substantially shaped the [literary] culture" of twelfth-century England and northern France. (6)
Most narrowly, this paper examines the production, mise-en-page and circulation of romanz Psalters in twelfth-century England and northern France. Its primary goal is to describe this vibrant and insufficiently historicized movement in early romanz literature in its basic material, practical and social contexts. It will move chronologically and formally: from the Psalter translations of the early century and their widespread circulation and adaptation, to the vernacular Psalter Commentaries of the last third of the century. As we trace the circulation of these texts and the history of their material forms, we can see how the romanz Psalter operated within broader vernacular literary developments. The chronological movement through the century will reveal three processes shaping both the romanz Psalter and that larger literary culture: first, an early engagement, both imitative and competitive, with the literary traditions of Anglo-Saxon England; second, the adoption of monastic reading practices and the texts appropriate to them by vernacular reading audiences; and, third an intense engagement--in material form, in genre and in style--between the devotional and the courtly. These last two points are particularly crucial. On the one hand, they speak to the social networks within which these Psalters were produced and circulated, where we systematically see the interaction of the aristocratic court and the cloister. On the other, the interaction of the vernacular Psalms with courtly discourses confirms again the point that the literary cannot be separated in this period from other, more 'interested'--devotional, meditational, pedagogical--discursive forms. Even in their most meditational and monastic expressions, the vernacular Psalms are literary and exercised a powerfully shaping influence within the emerging vernacular literary culture.
The Sauter de romance in the twelfth century
At the very dawn of francophone literature in England, we find two distinct translations of the Psalter, extant in two very different material forms. The one is a translation of the Hebrew Psalms extant in the Eadwine Psalter, a deluxe psalterium triplex that contains Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Norman glosses to two of its three Psalters (the Romanum and Hebrew versions respectively); the other is the so-called Oxford Psalter, a prose translation of the entire Gallican Psalter whose earliest, and in this context most important, witness is the rather humble Oxford, Bodleian MS Douce 320 (the Montebourg Psalter). (7) In this manuscript, the romanz Psalms are presented alone, without the traditional apparatus and decoration used to frame the reading of liturgical or exegetical Psalters, and still more strikingly, without any accompanying Latin text whatsoever. Although very different in form, these two romanz Psalters speak to a coherent set of impulses driving the larger emergence of romanz literature in post-conquest England.
Of these two early Anglo-Norman Psalters, the translation found in the Eadwine Psalter (Cambridge, Trinity College, MS R.17.1) most clearly illustrates the response to the precedent of Anglo-Saxon literary culture, in this case the traditions of the Old English Psalter. The Eadwine Psalter is a psalterium triplex produced at Canterbury (ca. 1155), whose complex scriptorial engineering is matched only by the splendor of its pictorial programme. (8) Famous for its portrait of Eadwine, 'prince of scribes,' the Eadwine Psalter contains "one hundred and sixty-six colored outline drawings," derived from the drawings of the Utrecht Psalter (Utrecht, University Library, MS script. eccl. 484), illustrating the Psalms, Canticles and Creeds. (9) Below these illustrations, which occupy the upper register, we find the Latin text of the Gallican Psalms in a central textual column surrounded by marginal Latin glosses. Towards the gutter, we find two smaller columns: the first presenting the Romanum Psalms with an interlinear Old English translation, and the second, closest to the gutter, the Hebrew Psalms with an interlineal Anglo-Norman translation--the only translation of the Hebrew Psalms made in any medieval French dialect. (10) As Dominique Markey shows, this translation, the Cambridge Psalter, clearly predates the manuscript itself, placing it back into the cradle of romanz literature in England. (11) The triplex format of the Eadwine Psalter is not itself unique, but its integral trilinguality is, making the manuscript an eloquent witness to the sociolinguistic dynamics that framed the mid-twelfth-century emergence of Anglo-Norman literature. (12)
Anglo-Norman literature emerges against the backdrop and precedent of Old English literature. Continuities with that past are most tangible here in the Old English gloss. The Romanum Psalms text that it accompanies was the "Psalter par excellence of the Anglo-Saxon Church from the seventh to the mid-tenth century." (13) As F. G. Berghaus has shown, the Eadwine Psalter's Old English glosses "belong to the mainstream of Old English Psalter glosses," showing a composite derivation from several Old English gloss types. (14) Yet the text and mise-en-page of the Old English glosses speak as much to rupture and the displacement of English literary traditions as they do to their continuity. In the course of the monastic reforms of the tenth and eleventh centuries, the Romanum Psalter had already been almost entirely superseded in England by the Gallican Psalter, so that even this Psalter text and its Old English glosses look back to a tradition long outdated. Moreover, the Old English glosses of the Eadwine Psalter are a "linguistic gallimaufry" of forms cobbled together from "several periods and dialects," including a brief use of the Old English Metrical Psalms from Psalm 90.15 to 95.2. (15) The Old English text is peppered with scribal errors that testify to the scribes' difficulties with the archaic English of their source, as well as with "peculiar spellings" that reveal the influence of both "contemporary Middle English" and Anglo-Norman. (16)
The Anglo-Norman gloss to the Hebrew Psalter shows the same mix of continuity and discontinuity that we see in the Old English gloss. Patrick O'Neill notes that, at first glance, "the English and the French gloss" seem to be "so similar in their interlinear form and glossarial function that to explain the presence of one should cast light on the presence of the other." (17) This would suggest that the French translation-entirely unprecedented-and its mise-en-page may have been modeled on its more established, venerable Old English companion. In this respect, the Anglo-Norman text would represent an imitative continuity with Anglo-Saxon traditions. And yet, "even here" O'Neill continues, "there is evidence that the French gloss was regarded as the more important of the two." (18) First, wherever "the English and the French vie for space," the Old English gloss is "sacrificed by being omitted" to maintain the material and discursive integrity of the French text. (19) Second, the effort to maintain that integrity is reiterated in the textual form of the Anglo-Norman gloss. In comparison to the cobbled discontinuities of the inherited Old English gloss, the Anglo-Norman text is written in a syntactically coherent and continuous prose. However, translations are lacking for Psalms 125 to 130, 149 and 150, which effectively divides the Anglo-Norman text into two unequal groups. Dominique Markey, confirming the work of Walter Schumann, concludes that the gloss to Psalms 1-124 is a copy of a preexistent (and probably complete) Anglo-Norman translation of the Hebrew Psalter, while the text of Psalms 131-148 is the work of a second "single author ... who avoids repetition and Latinisms in favour of a more varied" and rhetorically innovative vocabulary. (20) Where Schumann concludes that this second translator was a member of the Eadwine Psalter's scribal team, supplementing a faulty original, Markey suspects, on the basis of paleographic and linguistic evidence, the prior existence of yet another romanz Hebrew Psalter translation. (21)
Regardless of whether we are dealing with one original or two, the central facts remain: the manuscript is evidence of a vast project of literary vernacularization, undertaken well before 1155, that is discursively continuous, rhetorically innovative and, in many important ways, entirely new. This is the only Old French translation of the Hebrew Psalter, and neither is there a prior tradition of Old English glosses to the Hebrew Psalter from which it could take precedent. (22) These characteristics suggest that the Anglo-Norman text was not only preferred in relation to the Old English, but also that it was opportune, newly useful in this moment for a specific kind of reading. In O'Neill's assessment, the Old English gloss ought to be understood, not "as a text to be read and studied in its own right," but "as a formal parallel to the French" translation and a sign of cultural continuity. (23) This suggests, of course, that the French text was designed "to be read and studied in its own right." What this use might have been is suggested by the fact that, unlike the Gallican and Romanum Psalters, the Hebrew Psalter never found common use in liturgical or devotional practices, but was valued primarily as "a hermeneutic instrument" in the context of study and exegesis. (24) Its Anglo-Norman gloss, in turn, "reflects the desire to establish a good vernacular translation" that would aid in the study of the Latin text. (25) Yet the drive to maintain the material integrity and discursive continuity of the Anglo-Norman text, as well as the rhetorical innovations of the last eighteen Psalms, all suggest that the romanz text was something more than just a handmaiden to a Latin original, and rather, that it enjoyed pedagogical utility and literary value in and of itself. Thus, the Cambridge Psalter shows us that by mid-century romanz had acquired a precedence over Old English as Latin's principal handmaiden and in so doing had acquired a sociolinguistic prestige that it had not enjoyed prior to the Conquest. This new rhetorical elevation, in large part a sociolinguistic effect of the Conquest, made Anglo-Norman suitable to the texts, reading practices and social desires of education (very broadly imagined). In fact, it made the language literary.
More characteristic than the almost singular Cambridge Psalter--a very rarely copied translation of the relatively rare Hebrew text, tied to sacra pagina in an extraordinary manuscript--is a contemporaneous translation of the Gallican Psalms: the Oxford Psalter (ca. 1 100-1 1 15). (26) Not only is the Oxford Psalter the oldest work of biblical translation in French and quite possibly the oldest extant work of Anglo-Norman literature but, as we see below, it is also among the most widely circulated of all Anglo-Norman texts. (27) The widespread popularity of this translation may be a function of the Gallican's Psalter's pre-eminence in the Western liturgy but at least as important is the fact that the translation seems to have been designed to furnish meditational and devotional reading practices rather than exegesis. As we know from other contexts, devotional reading was one of the great engines of vernacularization on both sides of the Channel in the twelfth century. Yet we can also see in the wide course of its transmission and adaptation--again in stark contrast to the Cambridge Psalter--an increasing engagement of the Oxford Psalter and its devotional practices with the styles and forms of the new courtly aesthetic. We might argue that this engagement between meditative reading and courtly entertainment, between Psalms and romance, structures both the history of the vernacular Psalms and the broader field of romanz literature in the period of its emergence.
In another expression of the literary self-sufficiency that we see in the Cambridge Psalter, the Oxford Psalter is written in a continuous prose that conforms, not to Latin word order, but "a la syntaxe de la langue vulgaire [to the syntax of the vernacular language]." (28) It is an organic vernacular literary text, readable in and of itself, and not a word-by-word translation; as the mises-en-page of its subsequent manuscripts attest, it could not, as a result, easily service interlinear reading of any kind. In the six twelfth-century copies that come after Douce 320, the Oxford Psalter appears interlineally in only a single manuscript (London, British Library MS Harley 5102); however, the romanz text in this manuscript breaks off after the twenty-fifth Psalm-an indication of the difficulty of trying to align the two texts. (29) Given its antiquity, the material and poetic independence of the vernacular in this text is an extraordinary testament to the prestige of romanz in twelfth-century England. The mise-en-page of its earliest extant manuscript, the rather modest Montebourg Psalter (Oxford, Bodleian MS Douce 320b), confirms the vernacular text's independence in the simplest possible manner: the Oxford Psalms are presented in a single prose column, without any accompanying Latin text. It offers no prologue to justify or praise the benefits of vernacular, as we see in so many early romanz works, and most dramatically there is no accompanying Latin text of the Psalms in any form. Indeed, there is barely a word of Latin in the entire manuscript.
The inspiration for both the prose form and this particular mise-en-page may have come in part from Old English Psalter traditions. The connection is made particularly tantalizing if we accept Canterbury Cathedral Priory as the Oxford Psalter's provenance. (30) The only precedent for a prose Psalter in any European vernacular is the Old English Prose Psalter, prose itself being extremely rare in French in this period. (31) In his genealogy of French prose, Omer Jodogne cites the Montebourg copy of the Oxford Psalms as the earliest witness, but shows that prose composition did not really become common in any form until the last third of the twelfth century. (32) Moreover, the Old English Prose Psalter is "several ... steps removed from the word-for-word cribs of the glossed psalter tradition," is typically arranged in parallel prose columns rather than as interlinear gloss, and exhibits "clear connections with. the prose and poetry of the period," despite its liturgical and devotional origins--all characteristics shared by our Oxford Psalter. (33) But in its material and literary independence from the Latin, the Oxford Psalter in its earliest witness also seems like a radical innovation in vernacular literary culture.
As a complete translation of all 150 Psalms of the Gallican Psalter, the Oxford Psalter is a vast project of literary vernacularization. In the Douce 320 manuscript, it takes up thirty-seven folios (fol. 37a-73a), or seventy-three pages, and is followed by six Anglo-Norman canticles (Isaiah, Ezechias, Anne, Moses, Abacuc and Moses to the Children of Israel), similarly written in prose and taking up another six folios (fol. 73b-78b). These 73 pages of prose text are, moreover, presented in a format that is relatively large for twelfth-century Anglo-Norman manuscripts. The manuscript page itself is typically 29.3 x 20.4 centimeters (or approximately 11.5 x 8 in.), and the mise-en-page leaves very little marginal space. The frame ruling presents the text as a single, wide prose column measuring, generally, 25 x 16.5 centimeters, leaving only a little more than 2 centimeters along the top and bottom, and a little less than 2 centimeters for lateral margins, almost filling the relatively large page (see fig. 1). The ruling provides forty lines per page, thus making a total of almost three-thousand long prose lines for the entire text. In comparison, the Vie de saint Alexis, a work of contemporary Anglo-Norman provenance, takes up six folios (fols. 29a-34b) in the St. Albans Psalter (Dombibliothek Hildesheim, MS St. Godehard 1) and, although written in verse, is arranged on the page as a single prose column measuring 21.6 x 14.4 centimeters. (34) The only early Anglo-Norman or Old French works of comparable scale are the massive mid-century chronicle-romances, Geffrei Gaimar's Estoire des Engleis (ca. 1140) and Wace's Roman de Brut (ca. 1155). (35) As a result of the scale and literary complexity of its source, the Oxford Psalter demanded a range of lexical and rhetorical invention that expanded both the written francophone lexicon, as philologists have shown, as well as vernacular literary practice. (36)
The question of how this prodigious, innovative vernacular literary text was conceived and read remains to be answered in full, but many partial answers can be gleaned from its mise-en-page in the Douce 320 manuscript. First and foremost, the Oxford Psalms do not seem to have been intended for liturgical performance or chant. This is suggested, most immediately, by the lack of a liturgical apparatus (antiphons, calendar, and so on) or any accompanying Latin text, if not by the fact of its vernacularity alone. (37) What we do see, however, in both the layout of the individual Psalms and the division of the Psalter into discrete groups, suggests that the Montebourg Psalter was designed to furnish a meditational or devotional reading of the Psalms of a kind first practised in the monastic otium and increasingly imitated and cultivated by lay readers of the period. (38) These reading practices, conducted outside the opus of the Divine Office in varying degrees of withdrawal, combined meditation and study with a leisure that was thought to refresh the reading mind. (39) As in all forms of monastic study, the Psalms were the principal text of otium reading, but the practice ideally included a "healthy alternation" of diverse, salutary works: Old Testament histories, saints' lives, the Fathers, even acceptable classical authors, such as Seneca and Livy. (40) Regardless of the text employed, otium reading demanded specific literary forms and textual arrangements: brief, "didactically compact, self-contained units" of text arranged in a sequence. (41) These qualities of brevity and sequentiality accommodated both the practical demands of an "economy of daily readings," by providing brief texts for each day's limited period of study, and the cognitive demands of meditative reading. (42)
First, we see evidence of meditational use in the layout of the individual Psalms as continuous prose paragraphs. The beginning of each Psalm is marked at the left-hand margin by litterae notabiliores that alternate red and green. Smaller colored litterae notabiliores, continuous within the prose paragraph of each Psalm and also alternating in color, mark off individual verses within the prose paragraph of each Psalm. This arrangement conforms to neither of the two mise-en-page systems developed to aid in the liturgical performance of the Psalms: neither to the older per cola et commata arrangement of the Psalms, where each element of a grammatical period is given a new line, nor to the later stichic verse arrangement, where each verse begins on a new line with a littera notabilior (43) Where these patterns divide the Psalms into a series of grammatical or metrical units suitable to chant, the Douce 320 Psalter arranges each Psalm as a distinct, self-contained unit of continuous prose. This basic prose unit is thus disposed for a leisurely, continuous act of reading, what Samuel Berger describes as "la lecture courante": the slow, fluid, quiet reading of private meditations and entertainment, rather than the performance of a liturgy sung communally and aloud ("chant a haute voix"). (44)
The impulse towards offering brief, self-contained units of reading can also be seen in Douce 320's division of the Psalms into groups. Traditional methods for organizing the Psalms, signaled by the enlargement and rubrication of litterae notabiliores, change according to the Psalter's intended use. So-called 'Biblical Psalters' typically enlarge the initials to Psalms 1, 51 and 101 so as to divide the Psalms into three groups (1-50, 51-100, 101-150) and are typically associated with exegesis and sacra pagina. (45) More common is the monastic division of the Psalms into eight groups or nocturns, which provided the sets of Psalms to be performed during the offices of each day of the week. (46) In this system, the initial of the first Psalm of each nocturn group is enlarged: 1, 26, 38, 52, 68, 80, 97 and 109. (47) Just as with its atypical presentation as prose paragraphs, so the Psalms in the Montebourg Psalter follow neither of these traditional systems. Rather, through a variety of means, planned and for the most part ruled in advance, the Montebourg Psalter enlarges the initials to Psalms 1, 26, 51, 80, 101, 109, and 118. (48) This arrangement inconsistently mixes both biblical and monastic divisions and, by offering a new division at Psalm 118 (119), introduces at least one very practical ad hoc innovation. (49)
[FIGURE 1 OMITTED]
Rather than the eightfold division of monastic traditions, this arrangement divides the Psalms into seven groups (1-25, 26-50, 51-79, 80-100, 101-108, 109-117, 118-150) of approximately the same length. This creates a sequence of manageable groups that could service a weekly "economy of daily readings," although not in any traditional liturgical form. The ad hoc and innovative arrangement is signaled in particular by the division at Psalm 118 (119), which accommodates that Psalm's unparalleled length and gives the final form of seven groups. (50) Interestingly, it is this very Psalm's own praise of a sevenfold division of Psalm reading--"Seven times a day I have given praise to thee, for the judgments of thy justice" (118: 164)--that was used to justify the Hours of the Day in the Benedictine Rule (chap. 16), with the eighth hour, Vigils, added onto the basic pattern on the authority of Psalm 118:62 ("I rose at midnight to give praise to thee"). By the twelfth century, the liturgical division of the Psalms into the eight groups had long been firmly codified, but in these same chapters on psalmody, Benedict invited other divisions of the Psalms to suit the demands of other practices; he writes, "Above all else we urge that it anyone finds this distribution of the psalms [into eight Hours] unsatisfactory, he should arrange whatever he judges better, provided that the full complement of one hundred and fifty psalms" be "carefully maintained every week." (51) Benedict here authorizes what would become a pattern in high and later medieval Psalm culture: the ad hoc re-organization of the Psalm divisions to suit non-liturgical, and particularly devotional and meditational, purposes.
The ultimate expression of this widespread desire for organized rounds of contemplative Psalm reading is the Book of Hours, which provides readings for the canonical hours of the day, most of which are principally comprised of Psalms: the Office of the Virgin (thirty-five complete psalms), the Penitential Psalms, and the Office of the Dead (twenty-one psalms). (52) After the late thirteenth century, Books of Hours are the most commonly privately owned books in England, and had a particular vogue among aristocratic families, especially women, as the guides to private contemplation, as symbols of a refined even courtly piety, and as primers for the instruction of children. (53) However, prior to the mid-thirteenth century, the Psalter itself was the preeminent text of private devotions, both for lay aristocrats and for the monks and canons whose reading practices they were studiously imitating. As Eamon Duffy has shown, by the late eleventh and early twelfth century, monks and canons were employing the Psalms in a round of private devotions that "were. arranged round the liturgical 'Hours,'" but remained outside the formal offices of the liturgy. (54) These private monastic devotions of the otium or vacantes libros, authorized by Benedict's permission to re-organize the Psalms to suit the occasion, had an effect on the form of Psalters, giving us the various "utilitarian collections" of the Psalms that are "the ultimate ancestors of. the Book of Hours." (55)
Lacking illumination, a colophon or any distinctive markings by which we could firmly locate its production, the Douce 320 Psalter cannot with any certainty be assigned to either monastic or lay readers. M. Dominica Legge has shown that monastic readers eagerly produced and consumed texts en romanz throughout the period, and by the fourteenth century, the manuscript was being held at the Norman monastery of Montebourg and had been bound with a late-thirteenth-century Norman prose version of the Benedictine Rule (fols. 1-36). (56) This Benedictine milieu is enticing because of the possible connection to Canterbury Cathedral, which we know from the Eadwine Psalter was a center of both Psalter production and vernacular innovation. However, given the prominence in the early twelfth century of lay-monastic literary sociabilities, which encouraged lay readers to imitate monastic reading practices and had a decisive influence on the development of vernacular literature, it is quite possible that the text could have been produced with a more fluid sense of the permeability between the two groups of readers.
Regardless of its intended audience, the Oxford Psalter in the innovative and ad hoc Douce 320 form is a remarkable and early witness of that evolution of the Psalter into "well-structured series of texts for private devotion" which ultimately produced the Book of Hours. Both in its decorative divisions and its mise-en-page as prose paragraphs, it furnishes the needs of a private, contemplative Psalter. It presents the Psalms as self-contained units of continuous prose, suited to leisurely, meditative reading, and it organizes them into a complete but extraliturgical sequence of daily readings. Just as important is the simple fact of its vernacularity. As Nicholas Watson and Jocelyn Wogan-Browne have argued, romanz would become the preeminent language of devotional reading in late medieval England. (57) The Oxford Psalter suggests that these developments were well rooted very early in the twelfth century.
Yet more broadly significant, the Oxford Psalter translation shows that by the first quarter of the twelfth century, romanz was already thought of as a linguistic medium sufficient to the high literary and spiritual refinements of the Psalms. This conclusion is as important to literary histories as it is to the history of devotional reading, not least of all because the Psalter was never just a devotional or liturgical text. As all great patristic and medieval Psalms commentaries will show, the Psalms were thought of as both a garden of all Christian belief and the medium of liturgical celebration, and a summa of poetry, a compendium of rhetorical tropes and literary forms, including verse history, lament, encomium, pastoral and love-song. (58) Thus the Psalms shaped medieval theories of genre and style, as well as models of poetic performance and authorship. (59) Although the facts of authorship may have vexed theologians, David's role as author of the Psalms was widely accepted in the medieval literary imagination. Looking back on a long tradition, Petrarch, for example, could refer to David as the very model of Christian poet: "Christianorum poetam," and particularly in the high Middle Ages, David is vividly imagined in both image and text as God's jongleur (ioculator dei), a courtly poet singing songs of praise and lament in specific historical circumstances. (60) Thus the translation of all 150 Psalms into a syntactic, discursively continuous prose so early in the development of literary romanz has to be understood as much as a literary event as a devotional one. The translation demanded literary innovations--in lexicon and grammar, as philological studies have shown, but also in style and genre--entirely without precedent in this vernacular.
The closer analysis of the specifically literary qualities of the individual Oxford Psalms lies beyond the scope of this paper, but there are ways in which we can document its literary character and significance. With surprising consistency, the Psalms provided the direct material and performative contexts for some of the earliest works of Old French and Anglo-Norman literature. The Chanson de Sainte-Foy (second half of eleventh century), for example, was produced at Conques as a narrative song to accompany a liturgical procession, while the Jeu d'Adam (ca. 1146), the "earliest surviving dramatic work in the French vernacular," is a "semiliturgical play" that contains seven "Gregorian chants.. .usually sung as part of Matins, the most substantial service in ... the Divine Office," alternately quoting and alluding to the Psalms. (61) More typical, however, than these quasi-liturgical contexts are texts associated with the Psalter in its meditational and devotional forms. The most notable example is probably the Vie de saint Alexis, a saint's life, long seen as a proto-romance, that is one of the very earliest works of romanz literature. The earliest extant copy of the Alexis is found in the St. Albans Psalter (ca. 1125), one of a series of notable twelfth-century English Psalters produced "at monastic centers for clerical or lay patrons who were not members of the monastic community," in this case, for the recluse Christina of Markyate. (62) The Vie de saint Alexis appears in this manuscript between a cycle of forty full-page images (presenting a serial Christian history that focuses on the events of Christ's life) and the text of the Psalms, with the effect that the Alexis prologue (p. 57) faces the final of these full-page images, an image of David with his harp (p. 56) that is oddly out of its historical sequence. (63) Thus, not only is the Alexis paired with the Psalms for Christina's reading, but David in his role as ioculator dei presides over her reading of a narrative that is at once both an "estoire" and an "amiable cancun." (64) The 150 "amiable cancuns" of the Oxford Psalter might be thought of as the boldest early expression of this pattern of literary production that links new forms of vernacular literature and reading with the practices and sociabilities of monastic meditational reading.
Throughout the twelfth century, a remarkable concentration of cultural energy was devoted to the copying and adaptation of the Oxford Psalter. These texts and manuscripts, largely the product of monastic scriptoria, attest to the romanz Psalter's broad popularity as a devotional text. Yet they also show that the romanz Psalter maintained a very close and active engagement with secular and courtly literature. Ruth Dean counts no fewer than twelve complete extant copies of the Oxford Psalter that predate 1300, all of English provenance; seven of these date from the twelfth century, and to this list we must add dozens of partial or fragmentary texts from the same period. (65) In this first generation of transmission, we continue to see romanz Psalters emerging from institutions that had long-standing traditions of Old English composition, including Canterbury, Salisbury and Peterborough, suggesting a continuation of the kinds of interaction between Old English and Anglo-Norman that produced the Eadwine Psalter. (66)
The most prominent of these twelfth-century insular manuscripts comes from Winchester, another center of Anglo-Saxon Psalter production. The Winchester Psalter (London, BL Cotton Nero C.IV, ca. 1150-1160) was produced at St. Swithun's before it made its way later in the twelfth century to Shaftesbury Abbey. First produced for the great prince-bishop Henry of Blois, this is another of that series of prominent Psalters "made at monastic centers for clerical or lay patrons" which includes the St. Albans Psalter, as well as the romanz Psalter commentary produced at Durham later in the century for Hugh de Puiset (to which we will return). (67) Unlike the Montebourg Psalter, this is a deluxe Psalter conspicuous for its social, rhetorical, and material elevation--and indeed, in keeping with its patron, for its courtliness. As is signaled by its prayers, calendar and apparatus, as well by as its division into the standard nocturn groups, the Winchester Psalter was designed as a liturgical and, above all, a ceremonial manuscript. The Psalms are surrounded by a vast and luxurious visual program, which includes a prefatory cycle of thirty-eight full-page images (fols. 2-39) as well as inhabited initials for all 150 Psalms. (68) The kinds of elevation we see in the patronage, decoration and use of this manuscript are reiterated in the mise-en-page of the Psalms texts themselves, where we find a copy of the Oxford Psalter translation.
The Psalms are here laid out in parallel columns, carefully arranged so that the Latin and vernacular texts mirror one other. Each littera notabilior in the romanz text is presented in the same color and at the same position in the column as its corresponding Latin initial, thus making the prose French translation conform in decoration and form with the stichic verse arrangement of the Latin. The effect is to assert a horizontal equivalence between the two texts. The decorative programme similarly asserts a horizontal rather than hierarchical relationship between Latin and vernacular. For example, the 'B' initials of 'Beatus Vir' in Latin and 'Beonuret Barun [Blessed is the baron]' in romanz (fol. 46r) are of equal size and similar design; the only distinction--and it is indeed significant, since it associates David's voice with the Latin text--is found in the change from the leaf-scroll decoration of the French 'B' to the image of David as Psalmist that inhabits the bows of the Latin 'B'. (69) Similar decorative repetitions of initial letters can be seen at Psalms 80 (81) ('Exultate deo' and 'Esleecez a deu,' fol. 88v) and 109 (110) ('Dixit dominus' and 'Dist li sire,' fol. 105v), but the producers are equally happy to reproduce decorative patterns in different letters, as in the cases of Psalms 26 (27) ('Dominus illuminatio mea' and 'Li Sire,' fol. 57v) and 51 (52) ('Quid gloriaris' and 'Pur quei,' fol. 72r). Where the Montebourg Psalter had expressed the elevation and independence of the vernacular Psalms by material and textual means (e.g. the exclusion of any Latin text), the Winchester Psalter does so by arranging them as visual and textual metonyms. The vernacular in the Winchester Psalter is a sibling rather than a handmaiden to the parallel Latin text.
The Winchester Psalter also adapts its source text, shifting the register and lexicon of the vernacular text upwards, as it were, towards the courtly and the feudal. This shift is signaled from the very first words of the first Psalm. The Montebourg Psalter's first Psalm begins "Beneurez li huem chi ne alat el conseil des feluns" (fol. 37a), a translation that already casts the problem of virtue and sin into a familiar feudal lexicon of counsel and felony. The Winchester Psalter's text is still more comprehensively feudal and courtly. It begins:
Beonuret Barun qui ne alat el cunseil des feluns et en la veie des pecheurs ne stout et en la chaere de pestilence ne sist. Mais en la lei de notre seignor la volunted e en la sue lei purpenserat pur jurn e par nuit. Enpur co ne surdent li felun en juise ne li pecheor el conseil des dreituriers Par nostre sire cunuist la vere des justes e l'eire des feluns perirat. (70) [Blessed is the baron who accepts not the counsel of felons, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the chair of pestilence. But whose will is in the law of our seignor, on whose law he meditates by day and by night. Because of this the felon will not rise again in justice, nor the sinner [in] the council (counsel) of the righteous. For our sire knows the path of the just, and that the eire [both path and eyre] of the felons will perish.]
"Beatus vir" has been transformed into a "Beonuret barun," announcing the relocation of the voice, the ethical drama and even the reading of the Psalms into the social, literary even legal domains of the feudal aristocracy. The first Psalm seems now to address "li baruns" directly, instructing them that aristocratic value is founded on the submission of "li felun [felons]" to justice and of the loyal to "la lei de notre seignor [the law of our seignor]," both of which are achieved through "el conseil des dreituriers [the counsel of those who act justly]." (71) Both the ethos of feudal justice and the voice of courtly instruction are characteristic of contemporary courtly literature, chansons de geste and courtly romances especially. An interesting parallel to this adaptation is found in London, British Library MS. Add. 35283, an early thirteenth-century bilingual Psalter, also associated with Durham, which adapts the opening of the Oxford Psalms to "Beneit seit li ber ki ne ala el conseil des feluns" (fol.7r) ("Blessed be the barons [or chevaliers] who do no follow the counsel of felons"). (72) These patterns of stylistic adaptation, although (again) beyond the scope of this paper, make the Psalms themselves read as courtly lyrics or as 'romanced.' From mid-century, then, the generally literary qualities of the Oxford Psalter started to assume the literary features of the emerging courtly aesthetic.
Alongside the energetic circulation and adaptation of the Oxford Psalter, several other romanz Psalter translations were produced in the twelfth and thirteenth century. These other translations show both the centrality of the Psalter to vernacular literary culture in the period and its continuing engagement with more secular, courtly literary forms. Prior to 1170, three, and possibly four, other translations of the Gallican Psalter were made in England and northern France. There is, first, the fragmentary (but once complete) Orne Psalter (Paris, Archives Nationales AB xix, 1734), whose single remaining folio contains the Latin text of three Psalms with an interlinear prose Anglo-Norman translation distinct from the Oxford and Cambridge versions. (73) Both Charles Samaran and Yves Le Hir date this translation to the same era as the Cambridge and Oxford Psalters--that is "au commencement du XIIe siecle"--but also observe that it seems freer and less conservative ("moins traditionaliste") in its grammar and style. (74) Second is the Arundel (or sometimes London) Psalter (London, BL MS Arundel 230), a mid-century manuscript whose Calendar and Litany suggest connections to Croyland and Peterborough Abbeys respectively. Although seemingly related to the Oxford Psalter, the Arundel 230 translation of the Psalms (fols. 7-146) is a more literal, word-by-word rendering, apparently adapted to suit its role as an interlinear gloss on the Latin text. (75) The scribe of the original text, who wrote both the Latin and romanz texts, also wrote the first three verses of the Oxford translation in the right-hand margin of fol. 7, since damaged by the binder's knife. (76) This bilingual Psalter is accompanied by many other vernacular texts, including a poem on the Incarnation, as foretold to David (fol. 6), a table of unlucky days (fol. 6), a list of herb names (fol. 181), and much more significantly, Philippe de Thaon's Comput (fol. 1 and fol. 182r-fol. 194v), among the earliest Anglo-Norman literary works, and a now-fragmentary Romance of Alexander--a combination that speaks to the continuing convergence of the literary and the devotional in twelfth-century vernacular reading. Leena Lofstedt has recently drawn attention to the extensive quotation of the Psalms in the Old French translation of Gratian's Decretals (Brussels, Bibliotheque Royale MS 9084), which dates from the period 1164-1170 and seems to have had some connection to the coterie surrounding Thomas Beckett. She argues that the text for these romanz Psalms was drawn from another (third) independent translation of the Gallican Psalter that preexisted the Decretals translation. (77)
Arguably the most significant, and certainly the most monumental, of the independent twelfth-century translations is the one found within the body of a complete romanz Psalter commentary produced for Laurette d'Alsace (ca. 1165). (78) This text contains a complete translation of the Gallican Psalter up to Psalm 50 (51), with each verse presented en romanz at the head of its commentary (see fig. 2), and then a "loose translation" of the remaining Psalms "incorporated within the commentary as part of the exposition" that may have been produced at a slightly later date. (79) Gregory Stewart argues that this text, and especially the later, looser translation, is independent of "the [other] French translations of the twelfth century," although, echoes of the Oxford Psalter have long been observed. (80) The translation of the entire Psalter is itself a daunting task, but in this case the vernacular Psalter is embedded within a vast Old French Psalter Commentary. In its best copy, Durham Cathedral Library A.II.11-13, the commentary takes up three separate codices in a relatively large format, totaling 628 folios: a truly massive undertaking of vernacular composition and copying. (81) Here labor and material costs confirm cultural value: the production of a complete vernacular Psalter Commentary reveals the intensity of the desire to read the Psalter and to participate in its broader literary and devotional sociabilities through the vernacular. Fortunately, we know a fair bit about the intended audiences in this case; and as we will see, the Commentary, written for readers whose lives enact the engagement between court and cloister, itself engages directly with the aesthetics of courtly literature.
Laurette d'Alsace was the daughter of Thierry count of Flanders, and by the 1160s, she had been wife to no fewer than three prominent barons of northeastern France: Iwan of Alost, Raoul I of Vermandois, and Henry the Blind of Namur (Count of Luxembourg), all of whom are named in the commentary on Psalm 36 (37). In the 1160s, Laurette retired to the convent of Forestlez-Bruxelles, and as Stewart Gregory has shown, the Psalter Commentary seems to have been initiated from within her household to accompany this retirement from the aristocratic court to cloister. (82) Claiming in the commentary on Psalm 24:7 that ignorance of Scripture and of Latin is no "escusatiun [excuse]" for not knowing "que est biens [e] que est mals [that which is good and that which is evil]" the author asserts that "Se vos ne savez latin, vos saviez romanz u alvernaz. En teil language cum vos savez demandez, si aprendez de vostre creanz que vos devez faire, que vos deveiz laier [If you do not know Latin, you do know either romanz or alvernaz. In such language as you know how to, ask, and so learn from your faith (or doctrine) what you ought to do, what you ought to read]." (83) As in many romanz works of the twelfth century, the vernacular Commentary is justified by the need to make the biens of the Latin source, and the kinds of ethically formative, studious reading it carries, available to a courtly audience that reads only "romanz u alvernaz," two forms of the vernacular, most likely (as Gregory suggests), the northern langue d'oil or the southern langue d'oc. (84)
[FIGURE 2 OMITTED]
This is a "complete [vernacular] commentary on the whole of the Psalter," drawn principally from Gilbert de la Porree's Media Glossatura, to which, Gregory says, our author is "faithful in content rather than in style." (85) The author liberally supplements the Media Glossatura with material drawn from devotional works such as the Homilies of Gregory the Great and Bernard of Clairvaux's Sermons on the Song of Songs. But the most significant adaptations come in the increased use of narrative exempla and in what Gregory describes as the author's "impassioned" style. (86) Significantly, both of these changes are most evident in those places where the author praises Laurette's rejection of the secular court. (87) The author repeatedly uses the poles of Laurette's passage from court to cloister to frame the reading and interpretation of the Psalms. Thus, Laurette's archetypically courtly life becomes an essential part of the reading and even the 'story' of the Psalms, and with it comes an intense engagement between the Psalms and the courtly literary aesthetic.
The author's initial attempt to establish a clear opposition between court and cloister, with each pole characterized by distinct values, styles and texts, simply falls apart in the execution. His denunciation of worldly "vanities" systematically and paradoxically confirms the value of the courtly life he rejects. Denouncing the worldly "vanities" of Psalm 30:7, for example, he writes:
Or le metons donques au vacue por ce que peu aide. Or prenduns cinc cens mars d'or fin, or prenduns tot l'or d'Arabie, toz les pailes d'Aumarie, le plus beel ami del siecle et le plus bele amie, le plus gentil dame del siecle, toz les castels de Lumbardie. Que valent a l'estroit besoi[n]g? Certes, nient. (88) [Now we shall therefore understand vacue as that which aids little. Let us take 500 marks of refined gold, let us take all the gold of Araby, all the silk of Almaria, the most beautiful lover in the world and the most beautiful beloved, the most noble lady in the world, and all the castles in Lombardy. What is it all worth to our true needs? Certainly, nothing.]
Despite his final answer, these courtly desires retain their value for the author. The repetition of superlative adjectives and the reiterative accumulation of courtly biens suggests that the language and surplus value of courtly desire has not been converted by the language of homily: "tot l'or d'Arabie ... et le plus bele amie, le plus gentil dame ... toz les castels." Moreover, these accumulating phrases are drawn directly from the lexical repertoire of the courtly romance, where they typically occur in just this reiterative form. (89) The effect appears again in the rejection of "la prosperite del siecle [worldly prosperity]" in the commentary on Psalm 31:11, where the author hopes that the powerful might distance themselves ("s'esleecent") from the objects of courtly desire. But he again gets trapped, reiterating the most characteristic tag phrasings of the courtly style: "l'or, l'argent, le vair et le gris, et les dames et les beaus barons [the gold, the silver, the gray and the white miniver, and the ladies and the beaux barons]." (90) The paradox of value leads to a series of verbal paradoxes--"Ohi! Povre richoise, doleros deliz! [Oh! Impoverished wealth, dolorous delights!]"--that not only confirm the value of secular wealth and erotic love-"les povres deliz de la chambre [the impoverished delights of the chamber]"--but which are characteristic or even, as Sarah Kay has recently argued, generative of the courtly style. (91)
The reliance on the "impassioned" courtly style within the homiletic commentary confirms the author's understanding of the genre of the Psalms. Just as Jerome and his contemporaries imagined the Psalms as pastorals and love songs, so our author here looks to contemporary poetic practice for terminology to describe the Psalms as literary texts. In a telling commentary on the "mirabilia" of Psalm 39:6 (40) ("Multa fecisti tu, Domine Deus meus, mirabilia tua"), a term that by the early twelfth century had come to designate a type of narrative (a merveille), the author condemns the "encantemenz [enchantments]" of popular entertainments and encourages Laurette to read the Psalms instead. But in praising the Psalms as poems, the author draws directly upon a courtly literary terminology, imagining them as "plus beles miracles [more beautiful miracles]" and "plus hautes aventures [greater adventures]," as "caroles" that are in no way generically different from courtly songs, but are rather "mult plus belement cante [much more beautifully sung]." (92) The author prefers the Psalms, not as a wholly distinct mode of literature, but as more aesthetically perfect--"plus beles" and "plus hautes"--forms of courtly song and narrative.
This passage echoes the more famous example of the prologue to Denis Piramus's Vie seint Edmund le rei (ca. 1180), where, citing the courtly examples of Hue de Rotelande's Partenopeu de Blois (ll. 25-31) and the "lais" of Marie de France (ll. 35-48), Denis tries to turn an audience of courtly readers, "prince ... courtur,/ cunte, baruns e vavasur [princes, courtiers, counts, barons and vavasours]" (ll. 5-7), away from the "cuntes, chanceuns e fables [stories, songs and fables]" (ll. 50-51) they love. Instead, he encourages them to read this vernacular saint's life, which he describes, not as a generically different form, but rather a "deduit," a common term for pleasurable, courtly narrative, "qui mielz valt asez [which is worth much more]" and which is "plus delitable a oi'r [more delightful to hear]." (93) Clearly, for both authors, vernacular devotional texts, whether Psalms or saint's life, operate within the same generic field as vernacular "cuntes, chanceuns e fables." They cannot be distinguished by categorical definitions of style or form, but only qualitatively and aesthetically as mielz and plus beles.
Similarly, wherever the author situates Laurette's reading of the Psalms in relation to her other reading, similar effects can be seen. Although the commentary's exegesis clearly presumes the reader's knowledge of other biblical texts, the Gospels in particular, the author seems only to draw Laurette's direct attention to saints' lives (Dionysius and Maurice in Psalm 36 (37); and Cecilia, Lucie, and Agnes in Psalm 40 (41)); to classical authors, Ovid in particular stands out; and to legendary narratives like the story of "li set dormant," the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus, "cum vos bien avez oi't dire [as you have certainly heard recited]." (94) These texts and genres populate the literary field within which the author measures and understands Laurette's reading of the Psalms-and they are all familiar sources of courtly, vernacular literature. Just as the "impassioned style" of Laurette's Psalter, with its paradoxes and its aestheticized catalogues of courtly biens, is produced by a close engagement between the devotional and the courtly, so in the larger context, the Oxford Psalter is not to be understood as a devotional text poised against a field of courtly literature, but one rather that competes for attention and value within a single constituency of readers and within a single vernacular literary field.
Where the text might take us away from our immediate geographical and social parameters, the earliest and best copy of Laurette's Commentary takes us directly back to twelfth-century Durham, and provides a concrete location for the engagement of the devotional and the courtly. Durham, Cathedral Library, A.II.11-13 was made and held at Durham Cathedral during the episcopacy of Hugh de Puiset (1153-1195). Hugh was nephew to King Stephen and had long served in the curia of Stephen's brother Henry of Blois, the patron, we recall, of the Winchester Psalter. De Puiset, also earl of Northumberland between 1189 and 1194, was a great prince-bishop who maintained his court in aristocratic splendor. This immense and costly copy of Laurette's Commentary was in all likelihood made for De Puiset himself. De Puiset's patronage of conspicuously luxurious books was very clearly a mechanism of social refinement and distinction, and this copy of Laurette's Psalter Commentary should be thought of as part of the rich bequest of books that he left to his cathedral. (95) The Commentary receives the same kind of decoration and mise-en-page we see in other Latin Psalters and Psalter Commentaries from Durham, including those that so conspicuously count among De Puiset's bequests. (96) Thus, this manuscript belongs to a social environment very much like Laurette's own, where the impulses of the cloister and the aristocratic court converge. Not surprisingly, De Puiset's Durham was a major center for the production and reading of Anglo-Norman books, including some major works of courtly literature. Consider the example of Durham Cathedral Library C.IV.27, a manuscript produced in exactly this same period that contains the earliest and best witnesses of Wace's Brut, Geffrei Gaimar's Estoire des Engleis, Jordan Fantosme's Chronicle, the anonymous Description of England, and Helias's translation of the Prophecies of Merlin. The broader context of romanz reading at Durham would have brought this romanz Psalter Commentary into close contact with exactly the sorts of aventures and deduits that the author imagines.
While the best, and most, copies of Laurette's Psalter Commentary are Anglo-Norman, there is another avenue of transmission that is useful for reaffirming the broader conclusions of this paper. In the last decade of the twelfth century, Laurette's Commentary was copied and adapted at Troyes by the so-called Manerius atelier, a group of professional scribes and artisans working loosely together in the city of Troyes, and named after Manerius of Canterbury, a scribe who signed his name in a Latin Bible. The Manerius atelier produced a mixture of sacred and secular, Latin and vernacular, books for a network of local aristocratic readers that included members of the Champegnois court, including most prominently, Marie de Champagne. (97) Among these manuscripts are three separate copies of a romanz Psalter Commentary that, as Patricia Stirnemann observes, ultimately derive from Laurette's Commentary but have been adapted in a manner so consistent that they "form a separate textual family." (98) In the workshop of the Manerius atelier, and in the broader tastes of this aristocratic social network, these vernacular commentaries came into contact with some of the most important manuscripts of twelfth-century romance, including a copy of the Roman de Troie (London, BL Add. 30863); the Annonay fragments of Chretien de Troyes; and the so-called Guiot manuscript (Paris, BnF 794). This last manuscript, "one of the most fetishized manuscripts of the entire French Middle Ages," is "an anthology of the works of Chretien [de Troyes] and other romance authors arranged chronologically" and contains an inhabited initial (fol. 27) that "portrays Marie de Champagne" as an idealized reader of courtly romances. (99)
This portrait, along with the praise of Marie as reader and patron in the prologue to Chretien de Troyes's Chevalier de la Charette, have encouraged us to see Marie as an idealized but also exemplary reader of courtly romance. But we must take account of the fact that Marie is praised in nearly identical terms in the prologue of Evrat's Genese, a verse romanz translation of Genesis (1192) reputedly undertaken at the direct request of "ma dame de Chanpaigne." (100) (The manuscript containing Evrat's Genese, Paris, BnF fr. 900, is also a product of the Manerius atelier.) Yet more directly pertinent is the Eructavit cor meum, a vernacular translation and adaptation of the Psalm 44 (45), produced by a monk at the abbey of St. Pierre-le-Vif in Sens (see ll. 769-786) for Marie, "ma dame de Champaigne" (l.3). (101) In a direct allusion to the monastic meditational reading practices, the Eructavit author offers the "biaus saumes le roi David [beautiful Psalms of David]" (l. 2072) as a "Chancon de chambre" (l. 2075), a song of the bedchamber, in which she might "met son cuer a bon escole [set her heart to a good school]" (l. 2093). The Psalm translation, which appears to be entirely independent of the Oxford Psalter translation, is here embedded within a dream narrative in which David, in his role as God's jongleur--"'Juglerre sui,'" he says at line 235--finds himself presented before God and his barons (ll. 869-94) to sing at a wedding feast. This narrative, more courtly narrative than Psalms Commentary, is written in octosyllabic couplets, the romance's characteristic verse form, and is repeatedly described in terms familiar from Laurette's Commentary and the courtly idiom. It is a "chanconete" (l. 137) and a narrative "desduiz [or deduit]" (l. 236) sung before "barons et princes" (l. 27). In both its style and its circumstances of production, Marie's 44th Psalm, which was by tradition both royal Psalm and epithalamium, fully expresses the give-and-take between the courtly and the devotional that firmly places the vernacular Psalter at the center of the developing field of romanz reading.
The Circulation of the Romanz Psalter in the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries
The broadest measurements of literary taste--book ownership and production--show not only the continuing popularity of romanz Psalters throughout the Middle Ages, but their systematic association with works of courtly literature, most particularly romances. In their "Liste Provisoire de Manuscripts du XIIe Siecle Contenant Des Textes en Langue Francaise," Brian Woledge and Ian Short identify 120 manuscripts definitively or possibly attributable to the twelfth century, nineteen (or 16%) of which contain Psalters or Psalter commentaries in French. (102) The Psalter is the most numerous of any individual text, rivaled numerically only by the total number of all romances (20), whole or fragmentary. This rough picture remains largely the same in Madeleine Blaess's catalogue of "French" manuscripts in medieval English monastic libraries. As she observes, wherever we can measure what medieval English monks were reading en romanz, biblical works and in particular Psalters "sont toujours en tete de liste [are always at the head of the list]." (103) Blaess's catalogue shows a great variety in the ways monks read their Psalters en romanz:, from the simple "Psalterium in gallico" to bilingual Psalters, such as the "Psalterium in latino et gallico" donated by a "Hugonis de Plukele" to Canterbury Cathedral, to numerous Psalters "glosata gallice" and "expositi in gallico." (104) Blaess observes that these same monastic institutions are also, like Durham, generously endowed with romances: typical in this respect would be the library of Canterbury Cathedral, which contained two Psalters in latino et gallico, as well as three vernacular Brut narratives ("Brutus gallice"). (105)
Recent work by Christopher de Hamel, Jenny Stratford and Teresa Webber has also shown that, although relatively scarce, evidence of private and particularly aristocratic book collections (largely from inventories and wills) consistently shows high and late medieval audiences reading and inheriting the Psalter, frequently en romanz, alongside romances. (106) Perhaps most famous is the example of Guy de Beauchamp's donation of books to Bordesley Abbey (ca. 1305), where, among the first items, we find "Un sauter de Romaunce" lodged perfectly between "le premer livere de Launcelot [the first book of Lancelot]" and the "quatres principals Gestes de Charles [four principal gestes of Charlemagne]." (107) De Hamel cites the example of Joan Mortimer, Countess of March, who in 1322 held "a Psalter and four volumes of secular romances in Wigmore castle, Herefordshire ... apparently the only books in this substantial house." (108) Similar evidence comes from the royal household. On the basis of the accounts left behind by John Flete, Keeper of the Privy Wardrobe between 1324 and 1341, Juliet Vale concludes that there was "in effect a royal library. within the privy wardrobe in the Tower" under the control of the Keeper. (109) The first recorded issue of books in Flete's tenure was in 1324, when "14 'romances' and a French Psalter" were sent to William Langley, Clerk of Edward II's Chamber, suggesting that these books may have been for "use in the King's household." (110) Flete's accounts also record the delivery of seven books in French to Queen Isabella in March 1327, including romances such as Renard and Meraugys et Sado. (111) Isabella was an assiduous reader of romances; at her death she owned a "liber Tristram & Isolda" and a "liber ... de Perceual & Gauwayn," as well as a group of books that she kept in her chamber that included a bilingual French and Latin Psalter. (112) As Stratford and Webber note, this bilingual Psalter is in all probability the Psalter of Queen Isabella (Muniche, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Cod. Gall. 16), which contains a copy of the Oxford Psalter. (113)
Individual manuscripts localize and materialize these general trends. One vivid example is the Oscott Psalter (BL MS Add. 50000, ca. 1265-1270), a lavishly illustrated bilingual Psalter that is considered a masterpiece of the 'Court School' style and one of the "two finest illuminated manuscripts of the Early Gothic period in England." (114) The manuscript is famous for its full-page prefatory images, but just as striking is that the Anglo-Norman Psalms are, not in the prose of the Oxford Psalter, but in tail-rhyme stanzas, a verse form typically associated with Middle English romances. This tail-rhyme translation, also extant in London, British Library MS Harley 4070, consists of 2460 hexasyllabic sizains rhyming aab aab. (115)
Another important adaptation of the Oxford Psalter, many steps away from its original, is found in London, British Library MS Harley 273 (ca. 1314-1315), and with this text we come to the very heart of fourteenth-century English literary studies. The Psalter in Harley 273 has received scholarly attention in the reflected light of London, British Library MS Harley 2253--'the Harley manuscript'--a trilingual anthology, whose mix of poetry and narrative, romance and devotion, has placed it among the most important of all late medieval English literary manuscripts. The Harley scribe, who produced these two (Harley 273 and 2253) and one other extant manuscript (BL MS Royal 12.C.xii, ca. 1329-1340), worked in the area of Ludlow, copying legal documents and compiling literary manuscripts for a number of "local families of country-magnate status" who were tied together in a "network of social relationships." (116) Harley 2253 is famous for its Middle English lyrics and its fabliaux, but "numerically over half" of Harley 2253's contents are religious items, including three separate sets of instructions on prayer (items no. 101, 110, 111), all of which are exclusively focused on the use of the Psalms--once again documenting the affinities between secular poetry and the Psalms. (117)
The central feature of our Harley 273 is its romanz Psalter (fols. 8a-53b), which is here illuminated and combined with a romanz Hours of the Virgin (fols. 59c-67c). However, the Harley 273 Psalms are also bound, inter alia, with Nicholas Bozon's La Plainted'Amour (fols. 199a-203b), written in six-line stanzas, and William of Waddington's Le Manuel des Pechiez (fols. 113a-190d), an "aid to confession" written in octosyllabic couplets, whose many exempla bear close affinities to secular narrative forms, including fabliau. Thus, in all three Harley manuscripts, we see contrapuntal engagements between the devotional and the courtly, the Psalms and popular deduits, in a manner that Carter Revard likens to the "oppositional thematics" of the Canterbury Tales. (118)
However, the most dramatic development in the later history of the romanz Psalms draws us back to the Oxford Psalter. In keeping with its largely devotional uses, the Oxford Psalter tends to circulate in the early period without the company of other biblical texts. But in the thirteenth century, it was incorporated into the larger context of French Bibles, giving the Oxford Psalter a circulation so vast that it would become, almost certainly, the most widely read of all Anglo-Norman texts. The first step in this process was its inclusion in the "Bible du XIIIe Siecle," compiled in Paris between 1225 and 1230; from there, it would become the base text for the Psalms in all great medieval French biblical translations, including Guyart de Moulins's Bible historiale and its later elaboration as the Bible historiale completee. (119) In this form the Oxford Psalms would remain in use as the standard French Psalms translation until the sixteenth century, and in the form of the Louvain Bibles until 1690. (120) Echoing Samuel Berger's reflections on its unprecedented longevity and "innombrables" copies in French Bibles, De Poerck and Van Deyck describe the Oxford Psalter as "un veritable texte recu," a kind of romanz "vulgate" within "la litterature biblique en langue francaise." (121) And recalling its earliest engagements with English biblical translation, the Oxford Psalter rather than the Latin text of the Gallican Psalter itself, as Raymond St. Jacques has shown, served as the base text for the Middle English Glossed Prose Psalter (1325-1350). (122)
University of Ottawa
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(1.) I use 'romanz' to designate the francophone vernacular of northern France and England. If a romanz text was produced in England or Normandy, I will describe that text or manuscript as Anglo-Norman. The term 'Old French' anachronistically presumes modern national categories--as, in its way, 'Anglo-Norman' does. See Jocelyn Wogan Browne, "What's in a Name: the 'French' of 'England'," in Language and Culture in Medieval Britain: The French of England, c. 1100-c.1500 (York: York Medieval Press, 2009), 1-16.
(2.) Jerome made three translations of the Psalms into Latin, all of which were available in varying degrees throughout the Middle Ages. They are, in order: the Romanum, the Gallican, which became the standard Latin Psalter of the liturgy and Vulgate Bible, and the Hebrew (so-called because of its Hebrew, rather than Greek, source text).
(3.) Tony Hunt, "The Anglo-Norman book," sec. 1, 367-379, of Tony Hunt, Julia Boffey, A.S.G. Edwards and Daniel Huws, "Vernacular Literature and its readership," in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, Vol. II: 1100-1400 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008), 367-379, 369.
(4.) Only Gaimar's Estoire des Engleis could compare in size, but it is extant in only four manuscripts.
(5.) Francisque Michel ed., Libri Psalmorum versio antiqua gallica e cod. ms. in Bibl. Bodleiana (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1860).
(6.) Hannibal Hamlin, Psalm Culture and Early Modern English Literature (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004), 1.
(7.) I refer to the Douce 320b manuscript itself as the "Montebourg Psalter" and to the translation it contains as the "Oxford Psalter."
(8.) T.A. Heslop, "Decoration and Illustration," in The Eadwine Psalter: Text, Image and Monastic Culture in Twelfth-Century Canterbury, ed. Margaret Gibson, T. A. Heslop, and Richard W. Pfaff (London: Modern Humanities Research Association, 1992), 25-59, 25.
(9.) Ibid., 25.
(10.) Dominique Markey, "The Anglo-Norman Version," in The Eadwine Psalter: Text, Image and Monastic Culture in Twelfth-Century Canterbury, 139-156, 142.
(11.) On the Anglo-Norman text in the Eadwine Psalter generally, see Ibid., 139-156 passim.
(12.) Margaret Gibson, "Introduction," The Eadwine Psalter: Text, Image and Monastic Culture in Twelfth-Century Canterbury, 1-3.
(13.) Patrick P. O'Neill, "The English Version," in The Eadwine Psalter: Text, Image and Monastic Culture in Twelfth-Century Canterbury, 123-138, 124.
(14.) Ibid., 126 and 124. See F. G. Berghaus, Der Verwandtschaftsverhaltnisse der altenglischen Interlinearversionen des Psalters und der Cantica, Palaestra 272 (Gottingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1979), 18-21, 44-64, 73-76.
(15.) S.H. Kuhn, "The Vespasian Psalter Gloss: Original or Copy," PMLA 74:3 (1959): 168. See also, O'Neill, "The English Version," 137.
(16.) O'Neill, "The English Version," 125 and 135.
(17.) Ibid., 136.
(18.) Ibid., 137, quoting H. Kuhn, "The Vespasian Psalter Gloss," 168.
(19.) O'Neill writes, "For example, in the first line of fol. 275 v. the French gloss Beneissiez vos tutes (Latin 'benedicite omnes') is sprawled across the supralinear space; the corresponding English gloss, Bletsige ealle, is parenthetically inserted between Beneissiez and vos tutes. On the same folio, at the top of column B, where the main illumination intrudes on the space allotted to the vernacular glosses, it is the English gloss which is sacrificed by being omitted." O'Neill, "The English Version," 137.
(20.) Markey, "The Anglo-Norman Version," 147. See Walter Schumann, Vocalismus und Konstantismus des Cambridger Psalters Mit einem Anhang: Nachtrage zur Flexionslehre desselben Denkmals. (Heilbronn: Gegr. Henninger, 1883), 7-8.
(21.) Ibid., 151-154.
(22.) Ibid., 142 and 142.n.15.
(23.) O'Neill, "The English Version," 137.
(24.) D. Markey, "The Anglo-Norman Version," 152 and 139; and Charles M. Cooper, "Jerome's 'Hebrew Psalter' and the New Latin Version," Journal of Biblical Literature, 69:3 (1950), 233-244.
(25.) D. Markey, "The Anglo-Norman Version," 152.
(26.) The Eadwine Psalter's Cambridge translation seems only to have been reproduced once, in the 'Paris Psalter' (Paris, BN, MS lat. 8846), which is in effect an incomplete copy of the Eadwine Psalter. For the dating of the Oxford Psalter, I follow Brian Merrilees, who writes, "The Oxford Psalter is considered by some scholars to be oldest surviving Anglo-Norman text, and may date from as early as 1100," "Oxford Psalter," in The Dictionary of the Middle Ages, ed., Joseph R. Strayer (New York, 1982-1989) vol. 9, 319-320, at 319. Ruth Dean follows this dating in her Anglo-Norman Literature: A Guide to Texts and Manuscripts (London: Anglo-Norman Text Society, 1999), 239-242. The Montebourg Psalter is certainly a copy of an earlier text, giving us a terminus ante quem of c. 1115-20.
(27.) See Jean Bonnard, Les Traductions de la Bible en vers francais au Moyen Age (Geneva: Slatkine Reprints, 1967), 130-149; Samuel Berger, La Bible Francaise au Moyen Age: Etude sur Les Plus Anciennes Versions de la Bible Ecrites en Prose de Langue d'Oil (Paris: Champion, 1884; Geneva: Slatkine Reprints, 1967), 3-4 and 16-17; and the introductory materials in F. Michel, ed., Libri Psalmorum versio antiqua gallica e cod. ms. in Bibl. Bodleiana (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1860), as well as No. 445-457 in Ruth Dean, Anglo-Norman Literature: A Guide to Texts and Manuscripts, 239-249. On the unprecedented scale of its dissemination, see Guy de Poerck and Rika van Deyck, "La Bible et l'activite traductrice dans le pays romane avant 1300," in Grundriss der romanischen Literaturen des Mittelalters (GRLMA), (Heidelberg: Carl Winter, 1968) vol. 6:1, 21-57, 26.
(28.) De Poerck and van Deyck, "La Bible et l'activite traductrice," GRLMA vol. 6:1, 26.
(29.) In London, British Library MS Cotton Vitellius E.ix, each complete verse of the romanz text is written below its complete corresponding Latin verse, suggesting that equivalence could only be established on the scale of larger discursive units. In the remaining four manuscripts (Cambridge, Clare College MS Kk.3.6; London, BL MS Cotton Nero C.IV; Paris, BN Latin 768; and Paris, BN nouv. acq. lat 1670), the Oxford Psalter text appears in parallel, facing columns. This arrangement establishes an equivalence between Latin and romanz at the level of the individual Psalm and presumes a self-sufficiency of the vernacular on yet a larger scale.
(30.) The claim for a Canterbury provenance is more commonly made than explained, but it does have prominent supporters; e.g. Hunt, "The Anglo-Norman Book," 372.
(31.) The only other prior tradition of vernacular Psalms translation comes from Germany. See G. W. H. Lampe, "Germany and Low Countries," sec. 4 of "The Vernacular Scriptures," in The Cambridge History of the Bible (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1963-1970), 2:423.
(32.) Omer Jodogne, "La naissance de la prose francaise." Bulletin de la Classe des Lettres et des Sciences Morales et Politiques, Academie Royale de Belgique, 5th ser., 49 (1963): 296-308, 297.
(33.) M. J. Toswell, "The translation techniques of the old English metrical psalter, with special reference to Psalm 136." English Studies 75:5 (1994): 393-407, 393. See also M. J. Toswell, "The Late Anglo-Saxon Psalter: Ancestor of the Book of Hours?" Florilegium 14 (1995-96): 1-24; George Philip Krapp, The Paris Psalter and the Meters of Boethius (New York: Columbia University Press, 1932), x-xi.
(34.) The codicological description of the Vie de saint Alexis and its quire is available at the University of Aberdeen's St. Albans Psalter website: http://www.abdn. ac.uk/stalbanspsalter/english/essays/codicology.shtml#rulingandvellum.
(35.) Wace's Brut, which consists of 14866 lines in octosyllabic couplets, takes up 95 folios (fols. 1a-94a) in its best copy, Durham Cathedral Library C.IV.27. Here the text is set out in two columns per page, with the ruled space of each column measuring 19 x 5.3 centimeters. Gaimar's Estoire des Engleis, whose best copy is found in the very same manuscript, takes up 45 folios (fols. 94b-138d) in two columns measuring 18.5 x 6.1 centimeters.
(36.) Since the publication of J. H. Meister's Die Flexion im Oxforder Psalter (Halle, Germany: M. Niemeyer, 1877), the earliest critical assessment of Francisque Michel's 1860 edition, by far the greatest amount of work on the Oxford Psalter has been philological. Even the most cursory search for the citations of the Oxford Psalter in the Anglo-Norman Dictionary, ed. Louise W. Stone and William Rothwell (London: Modern Humanities Research Association, 1977-1992), in which there are 730 separate citations; or standard Old French Dictionaries will confirm its extraordinary place in French lexical and philological history.
(37.) Vernacularity itself is insufficient to rule out liturgical use; there were many common paraliturgical uses of the vernacular, particularly in prayers and hagiographical readings, and some were willing to allow the vernacular within the liturgy itself. Jean Leclercq cites both Peter of Poitiers and the Franciscan Bertrand de la Tour justifying the use of the vernacular in the liturgy--an allowance that would demand romanz translations of the Psalms. Jean Leclercq, "Les Traductions de la Bible et la Spiritualite Medievale," in The Bible and Medieval Culture, ed. W. Lourdaux and D. Verhelst (Leuven: Leuven University Press, 1979), 263-277, 265, n.12 and n. 13.
(38.) On the secular imitation of otium reading in the twelfth century, see Geoff Rector "En sa chambre sovent le lit: Literary Leisure and the Sociabilities of Early Romanz Literature (ca. 1100-1150)," forthcoming.
(39.) The standard work on medieval notions of otium and its classical heritage is Jean Leclercq, Otia Monastica: Etudes sur le vocabulaire de la contemplation au moyen age, Studia Anselmiana 51 (Rome: Herder, 1963).
(40.) Ibid., 77-78.
(41.) R.D. Ray, "Medieval Historiography Through the Twelfth Century," Viator 5 (1974), 33-59, 41.
(42.) Ibid., 41. On brevity and division, see Mary Carruthers, The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990), 81-85. On the cognitive demands of meditative reading see also Carruthers, The Craft of Thought: Meditation, Rhetoric and the Making of Images 400-1200 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998).
(43.) Malcolm Parkes, Pause and Effect: An Introduction to the History of Punctuation in the West (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993), 35-38.
(44.) Berger, La Bible Francaise au Moyen Age, 16.
(45.) The threefold division of the Psalter not only accommodated exegesis, but became in turn a common subject of twelfth-century exegesis, typically involving number symbolism as a way of solving the Psalms' "mosaic of mysteries"; see A.J. Minnis, Medieval Theory of Authorship: Scholastic Literary Attitudes in the Later Middle Ages (London Scolar Press, 1984), 151.
(46.) The eighth group, of Psalms 109-150, was spread out over days of the week at Evensong.
(47.) V. Leroquais, Les Psautiers Manuscrits Latins des Bibliotheques Publiques de France (MAcon: Protat Freres, 1940), I, xliv-lvii.
(48.) The typical space left for the rubrication of Psalm initials in the Montebourg Psalter is two lines. This provides a standard against which to measure the enlargement of other litterae notabiliores. First, the 'B' (fol. 37r) of Psalm 1 is afforded six lines, while the initials of Psalms 51 (fol. 48v) and 101 (fol. 61v) are given each four lines. This arrangement draws on the tradition of the Biblical Psalter. Three lines are given for the initials of Psalms 80 (fol. 56r) and 109 (fol. 64v), which are divisions within the liturgical system, but also to the initial of Psalm 118 (fol. 66v), which is not a traditional division in either one. The only other Psalm to receive a decorative attention that draws it out from the standard two-line enlargement is Psalm 26 (fol. 42r). The original ruling provided only the standard two lines, but the decorator wrote the first two words entirely in red capitals, as "LI SIRE," a decoration not repeated in any other Psalm.
(49.) I follow the numbering of the Latin Vulgate Psalter, since this is the numbering system followed in virtually all medieval European Psalters. This numbering system is still followed in the modern Douay-Rheims version, which I will use as the source of my English translations. Wherever the article discusses the text of a specific Psalm, the Hebrew Psalms numbers, generally employed in post-Reformation Bibles and familiar from the King James and NAB versions, will be indicated in parentheses. The divergence between the two systems occurs at Psalm 9, which becomes Psalms 9 and 10 in the Hebrew numbering system.
(50.) The Benedictine Rule makes its own special arrangements to deal with Psalm 118's unwieldy length, dividing its verses among the Hours of Sunday and Monday; see Benedict of Nursia, The Rule of St. Benedict in English, ed. and trans. Timothy Fry (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 1982), chapter 18: 2 and 7-8.
(51.) Fry, The Rule of St. Benedict in English, chap. 18.22-23, 47.
(52.) Christopher de Hamel, "Books of Hours: Imaging the Word," in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, vol. II, 1100-1400, ed. Lotte Hellinga and J. B. Trapp (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008), 3-21, 13-14.
(53.) Ibid., 13-14.
(54.) Eamon Duffy, Marking the Hours: English People and Their Prayers 1240-1570 (New Haven, CT, and London: Yale University Press, 2006), 6.
(55.) Ibid., 5-6.
(56.) Legge, Anglo-Norman in the Cloisters: The Influence of the Orders upon Anglo-Norman Literature (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1950).
(57.) Nicholas Watson and Jocelyn Wogan-Browne, "The French of England: the Compileison, Ancrene Wisse, and the Idea of Anglo-Norman." The Journal of Romance Studies 4:3 (Winter 2004): 35-59.
(58.) Pierre Riche, Education and Culture in the Barbarian West: Sixth through Eighth Centuries, trans. John J. Contreni (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1976), 167; J.M. Cortes, "Figures et tropes dans le psautier de Cassiodore," Revue des etudes latines xlii (1964): 361-375. The opinion was frequently authorized by reference to Jerome; Paula and Eustochium, in a letter to Marcella that circulated among and as one of Jerome's letters, describe the Psalms as "love songs [amatoriae cantiones]" sung by reapers and shepherds--literally "pastorales"--working in a bucolic Palestine. Sancti Eusebii Hieronymi Epistulae, ed. Isidorus Hilberg, 3 vols. (New York: Johnson, 1970; repr. Vienna: F. Tempsky, 1910-18), epistle 46.
(59.) See A.J. Minnis, Medieval Theory of Authorship, 42-50. See also, Michael Kuczynski, Prophetic Song: The Psalms as Moral Discourse in Late Medieval England (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1995), esp. chap. 4, "The Psalms as Models for Middle English Poetry," 120-148.
(60.) Petrarch, Lettres Familieres VIII-XI (Reum familiarium VIII-XI). Ed. Pierre Laurens and trans. Andre Longpre. Les Classiques de L'Humanisme (Paris: Les Belles Lettres, 2003), X.4, 280. On David's role as ioculatordei, see Jean Leclercq, "'Ioculator et saltator': S. Bernard et l'image du jongleur dans les manuscrits," in Translatio studii: Manuscript and Library Studies Honoring Oliver L. Kapsner, O.S.B., ed. Julian G. Plante (Collegeville, Minn.: St John's University Press, 1973), 24-48.
(61.) On the Chanson de Sainte-Foy, see Michel Zink, Litterature francaise du Moyen Age (Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 2001), 32. Charles T. Downey, "Ad imaginem suam: Regional Chant Variants and the Origins of the Jeu d'Adam." Comparative Drama 36:3/4 (Fall-Winter 2002), 359. See also the remarks of Le Jeu d'Adam's editors, Willem Noomen, Le jeu d'Adam (Ordo representacionis Ade) (Paris: Champion, 1971), 7 and Wolfgang van Emden, ed. and trans. Le jeu d'Adam (Edinburgh: British Rencesvals Publications, 1996), iv.
(62.) Nigel Morgan, "Books for the liturgy and private prayer," in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, vol. II, 1100-1400 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008), 291-316, 312. This group also includes the Winchester Psalter, London, British Library, Cotton Nero C.IV, a manuscript, which we will return to shortly, that contains another early copy of the Oxford Psalms.
(63.) Since the nineteenth century, when page numbers were added in arabic numerals in the top right hand corner of every recto, the editorial convention has been to refer to page rather than folio numbers in the St Albans Psalter.
(64.) The effect of these two facing pages can be seen at the University of Aberdeen's St. Albans Psalter website: http://www.abdn.ac.uk/stalbanspsalter/ images/bifolios/pages56_57.html.
(65.) Dean, Anglo-Norman Literature, no. 445, 239-240; for the list of fragmentary texts, see Brian Woledge and H.P. Clive, Repertoire des plus anciens textes en prose francaise: depuis 842 jusqu'aux premieres annees du XIIIe siecle (Geneva: Droz, 1964), 97.
(66.) Like the Eadwine and Montebourg Psalters, Paris BnF nouv. acq. lat. 1670, another late twelfth-century copy of the Oxford Psalter, seems to have been composed at Christ Church, Canterbury. Similarly, two copies produced early in the thirteenth century, the Corbie Psalter (Paris, BnF lat. 768) and Cambridge, Clare College MS Kk.3.6, have associations with Salisbury and Peterborough, respectively. Woledge and Clive, Repertoire des plus anciens textes, 98.
(67.) Nigel Morgan, "Books for the liturgy and private prayer," 312.
(68.) For a description of the manuscript, with numerous plates, see Francis Wormald, The Winchester Psalter (London: Harvey Miller and Medcalf, 1973).
(69.) An image of fol. 46r appears as fig. 95 in Wormald's The Winchester Psalter, 92
(70.) London, British Library, Cotton Nero C.IV, fol. 46r.
(71.) "Dreituriers," "those who act justly," is difficult to translate because of its many social and legal connotations. Like the other terms in this passage, it associates "the just" with a specific social class: those who exercise and deliver justice. With equal accuracy, we might even have translated "dreiturier" as "justiciar."
(72.) I suspect there is a direct connection between these manuscripts, since the mise-en-page of the British Library Add. 35283 Psalter is identical to that of London, British Library, Cotton Nero C.IV. The Latin and romanz texts are presented in parallel columns, the two B initials in nearly identical leaf-scroll decoration, and each littera notabilior in the romanz text presented in the same color and at the same position in the column as its corresponding Latin initial.
(73.) Dean, Anglo-Norman Literature, No. 447, 242. Woledge and Clive, Repertoire des plus anciens textes, no.41, 97 and 14; Yves Le Hir, "Sur des traductions en prose francaise du Psautier," Revue de Linguistique Romane 25 (1961), 324-28. Charles Samaran demonstrates the independence of the Orne Psalter from the earlier Oxford and Cambridge versions. Charles Samaran "Fragment d'une traduction en prose francaise du Psautier," Romania 55 (1929), 161-173.
(74.) Samaran, "Fragment d'une traduction," 173; Le Hir, "Sur des traductions en prose francaise du Psautier," 324-38.
(75.) Ruth Dean, Anglo-Norman Literature, no. 446, 242; Woledge and Clive, Repertoire des plus anciens textes, no. 39, 94; Guy de Poerck, Rika van Deyck, "La Bible et l'activite traductrice," GRLMA vol. 6:2, no.1864, 94. See also the partial diplomatic edition of Arundel 230 in A. Beyer, "Die Londoner Psalterhandschrift Arundel 230," in Zeitschrift fur romanische Philologie 11 (1887): 513-534, and 12 (1888): 1-56.
(76.) Interestingly, the text of the first folio's interlinear romanz translation has been replaced, due to either fading or erasure. A seventeenth-century note says that the text was replaced with another romanz translation taken from a manuscript held, due to its beauty and antiquity, at Trinity College, Cambridge--almost certainly the Eadwine Psalter.
(77.) Leena Lofstedt, "Le Psautier en Ancien Francais," Neuphilologische Mitteilungen, 100:4 (1999), 421-432.
(78.) Durham, Cathedral Library, A.II.11-13. S. Gregory, ed. The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary in French for Laurette d'Alsace : an Edition of Psalms I-L. (London: Modern Humanities Research Association, 1990), vol. 1, 6-7.
(79.) Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary, vol. 1, 6.
(80.) Following the convention set by Michel, Berger, Beyer and others, Guy de Poerck and Rika van Deyck state that the Oxford Psalter "a servi de base" for Laurette's commentary. de Poerck and van Deyck, "La Bible et l'activite traductrice," GRLMA vol. 6:2, no. 1480, 63.
(81.) The first two codices, A.II.11 and 12, are contemporaneous and were produced at Durham at the end of the twelfth century; the third codex, A.II.13, is of later Durham production, possibly as late as the mid-thirteenth century. A.II.11 and 12 measure 33.5 x 23.5 centimeters, while A.II.13 measures 36.2 x 25.5 centimeters.
(82.) On the dedication to Laurette, her marital history and the occasion of her retirement to Forest-lez-Bruxelles, see Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary, vol. 1, 18-19.
(83.) Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary, (24.165-170), vol. 1, 277-278.
(84.) Ibid., vol. 2, 655.n.171.
(85.) Ibid., vol. 1, 6 and 11-12.
(86.) Ibid., vol. 1, 12.
(87.) Ibid., vol. 1, 11-12; and Gregory, "The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary in French Attributed to Simon of Tournai," Romania 100 (1979), 289-340.
(88.) Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary (30. 199-216), vol. 1, 322.
(89.) "Pailes d'Aumarie," for example, is a tag phrase repeated throughout all the branches of the Roman ^Alexandre and "Aumarie" occurs as a place name in Chretien de Troyes' Cliges, l. 6248. For the "pailes d'Aumarie," the legendary silks of Spanish Almeria, see Roman d'Alexandre Branch I, ll. 162, 1122, 2437; Branch IV, l. 1146, as well Les Enfances Guillaume l. 1766. For an example of rhetorical reiteration in the description of wealth, see the description of the markets of Carthage in the Roman d'Eneas: "la vendoit an lo vair, lo gris/ coltes de paile, covertors,/ porpres, pailles, dras de color,/ pierres, epices et vaiselle;/ marcheandie riche e bele/ i pooit l'an toz tenz trover," ll. 450-455. Eneas: Roman du XIIe siecle. Ed. J. J. Salvedra de Grave (Paris: Champion, 1985), 14-15.
(90.) Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary (31.333-45), vol. 1, 341.
(91.) Ibid., vol. 1, 341. See Sarah Kay, Courtly Contradictions: The Emergence of the Literary Object in the Twelfth Century (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001).
(92.) Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary (39.136-149), vol. 2, 427-428 and 459.
(93.) Denis Piramus, La Vie Seint Edmund le Rei, ed. H. Kjellman (Goteborg: Goteborg Kungl. Vetenskaps-och Vitterhets-Samhalles Handlingar, 1935; Geneva: Slatkine Reprints, 1974).
(94.) The author cites Ovid, for example, in commenting on Psalm 23.1; Ovid is here cited beside Moses as an authority on Creation. Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary (23.25), vol. 1, 269. Juvenal (Satires, X.276) is quoted, but not named, in the commentary on Psalm 33 (33.373-74), vol. 1, 360. The Seven Sleepers appear in the commentary on Psalm 43:13 (43.235), vol. 2, 459.
(95.) The list is preserved in Durham, Muniments of the Dean and Chapter, Misc. Charter 2622, printed in Catalogi Veteres Librorum Ecclesiae Cathedralis Dunelm: Catalogues of the Library of Durham Cathedral, Ed. James Raine. Publications of the Surtees Society, (London: J. B. Nichols and Son, 1838), 7:118-119, and described in part by R. A. B Mynors in Durham Cathedral Manuscripts to the End of the Twelfth Century (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1939).
(96.) For example, the script of A.II.11 and 12 is closely related to the script of Durham Cathedral Library A.II.2, a Latin Bible that belonged to de Puiset, and as Stewart Gregory observes, it is thus "reasonable to assume that they too were made for de Puiset in the Durham scriptorium." Gregory, The Twelfth-Century Psalter Commentary, vol. 1, 1.
(97.) Patricia Stirnemann, "Some Champenois Vernacular Manuscripts and the Manerius Style of Illumination," in The Manuscripts of Chretien de Troyes, ed. Keith Busby et al. (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 1993), vol. 1, 195-226, 197, 201-202 and 204; see also Keith Busby, Codex and Context: Reading Old French Verse Narrative in Manuscript (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2002), 2: 571.
(98.) Stirnemann, "Some Champenois Vernacular Manuscripts," 197 and 201-202.
(99.) Ibid., 204. See also Busby, Codex and Context, 2: 572.
(100.) Stirnemann, "Some Champenois Vernacular Manuscripts," 197.
(101.) Eructavit, T. Atkinson Jenkins ed. (Dresden: Gesellschaft fur Romanische Literatur, 1909); George Fitch McKibben, The Eructavit, an Old French Poem: the Author's Environment, his Argument and Materials (Baltimore: J.H. Furst, 1907).
(102.) Brian Woledge and Ian Short, "Liste Provisoire de Manuscripts du XIIe Siecle Contenant Des Textes en Langue Francaise," Romania 102 (1981), 1-17, 17.
(103.) Blaess, "Les manuscrits francais dans les monasteres anglais au Moyen Age," Romania 94 (1973), 321-358, 324.
(104.) Ibid., 330, 356, 335 and 328.
(105.) Ibid., 324-25, 330-331, and 356-57.
(106.) de Hamel, "Books and Society," at 14-17; Jenny Stratford and Teresa Webber, "Bishops and kings: private book collections in medieval England," in Cambridge History of Libraries in Britain and Ireland (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006), 178-217. Both of these studies make use of S. H. Cavanaugh, "A Study of books privately owned in England 1300-1450," unpublished PhD thesis, University of Pennsylvania, 1980.
(107.) Madeleine Blaess, 'L'Abbaye de Bordesley et les livres de Guy de Beauchamp,' Romania 78 (1957): 513.
(108.) de Hamel, "Books and Society," 14.
(109.) Juliet Vale, Edward III and Chivalry: Chivalric Society and its Context, 1270-1350 (Woodbridge, UK: Boydell and Brewer, 1982), 49-50 and appendix 9.
(110.) Jenny Stratford, "The early royal collections and the Royal Library to 1461," in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, Vol. 3: 1400-1557, ed. Lotte Hellinga and J.B. Trapp (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 255-266, 257-58.
(111.) London, British Library, Add. MS 60584, fol. 27v. Stratford and Webber, "Bishops and kings," 202.
(112.) Edith Rickert, "King Richard's Books, Library, 4th ser., 13 (1932), 145; and Stratford and Webber, "Bishops and kings," 203.
(113.) Stratford and Webber, "Bishops and kings," 203.
(114.) D.H. Turner, Early Gothic Illuminated Manuscripts in England (London, 1965), 25.
(115.) See Jean Bonnard, Les Traductions de la Bible en vers francais au Moyen Age, 130-131.
(116.) Carter Revard, "Four Fabliaux from London, BL MS Harley 2253, Translated into English Verse," The Chaucer Review 40.2 (2005), 22-23.
(117.) Michael P. Kuczynski, "'An Electric Stream': The Religious Contents," in Studies in the Harley Manuscript: the Scribes, Contents, and Social Contexts of British Library MS Harley 2253, ed. Susanna Fein (Kalamazoo, Mich., 2000), 123-161, 124 and 148.
(118.) Revard, "Scribe and Provenance," in Studies in the Harley Manuscript: The Scribes, Contents, and Social Contexts of British Library MS Harley 2253, ed. Susanna Fein (Kalamazoo, MI: Medieval Institute Publications, Western Michigan University, 2000), 111-140, 111.
(119.) de Poerck and van Deyck, "Bible et l'activite traductrice," vol. 6:1, 29-30; vol. 6:2, no. 1416, 57-58.
(120.) Ibid., vol. 6:1, 26; vol. 6:2, no. 1480, 62-64.
(121.) Ibid., vol. 6:1, 26. See Samuel Berger, La Bible Francaise ay Moyen Age: Etude sur Les Plus Anciennes Versions de la Bible Ecrites en Prose de Langue d'Oil (Paris: Champion, 1884), 3-4 and 16-17.
(122.) Raymond St. Jacques, "The Middle English Glossed Prose Psalter and its French Source," in Medieval Translators and their Craft, ed. Jeanette Beer (Kalamazoo, MI: Medieval Institute Publications, Western Michigan University, 1999), 135-154.
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|Publication:||The Journal of the Early Book Society for the Study of Manuscripts and Printing History|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2010|
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