Old English Lives of Saints, a series composed in the 990s by the Benedictine monk Aelfric in his distinctive alliterative prose, portrays an array of saints—including virgin martyrs, married virgins, aristocrats, kings, soldiers, and bishops—for a late Anglo-Saxon audience. At a turbulent time when England was under increasingly severe Viking attack, the examples of these saints modeled courageous faith, self-sacrifice, and individual and collective resistance. The Lives also covers topics as diverse as the four kinds of war, the three orders of society, and whether the unjust can be exempt from eternal punishment. Aelfric intended this series to complement his Catholic Homilies, two important and widely disseminated collections used for preaching to lay people and clergy. The translation is presented alongside a new edition of Lives of Saints, for which all extant manuscripts have been collated afresh.
Both the first complete edition and the first complete translation of the Lives of Saints in 120 years…This is a stellar work in all respects…The translation is exceptionally elegant, accurate, and idiomatic…The volumes are not only well suited to classroom use but indeed constitute the new and definitive leading edition.
Filled with deep learning, energy, and good sense. Although the editors wear their learning lightly, these three volumes are the product of extensive knowledge and erudition. Scholars of all levels, as well as generalists interested in the early medieval past, will find much to admire in this accomplished and elegant edition.
- 416 pages
- 5-1/4 x 8 inches
- Harvard University Press
From this author
Sorry, there was an error adding the item to your shopping bag.
Sorry, your session has expired. Please refresh your browser's tab.