Literature of Satire in the Twelfth Century a Neglected Mediaeval Genre

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Recent anthologies give the impression that formal satire faded with Juvenal or Apuleius and did not reappear until Erasmus. This neglect of the entire medieval period omits the most prolific era for Latin verse satire in literary history, an oversight this study rectifies.


"In this mature study of Latin satire, Pepin moves from his earlier interest in John of Salisbury's Entheticus to subtle analyses of a humorous and influential but neglected genre of the richly productive period Charles Haskins identified in The Renaissance of the Twelfth Century (1927). The first chapter surveys generic influences of classical satire, cross-genre adaptations from nonsatirical literature, and parodic uses of liturgy and Scriptures. Four subsequent chapters focus on broader satirical themes, which encompass whole populations: kings, courtiers, bishops, as well as women. Liberal quotes and translations from Bernard of Cluny's De contemptu mundi, the poems of Hugh of Orleans, and Walter of Chatillon, and Nigel of Salisbury's Speculum stultorum are set in their cultural context ... endnotes for each chapter are thorough, and readers may enjoy the large typeface and interlinear white space. Essential for graduate school and scholarly libraries." - CHOICE

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