The thirteenth century saw a great upsurge in the writing of theology, both general treatises that contained some material on heresy and polemical treatises specifically directed against heresy. The writing of anti-heretical treatises flourished during the 1230s and 1240s, principally in Italy, where they seem to have been connected with intellectually high-level, real-life polemical exchanges between Catholics and heretics. Italy is a region where direct inquisitorial repression was not as effective as it was in Languedoc. Southern France has much less to show, after the four-part treatise written by Alan of Lille, extracts of which are provided in translation by Wakefield and Evans. The Summa of Authorities provides a textual correlative of the authority-bashing polemics in debates between Catholics, heretics and Waldensians of the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries.
This book is a translation of the eleventh-century Latin Annals of Lampert, the monk of Hersfeld. Lampert produced the most detailed account of the events of 1056-77 (the minority of Henry IV of Germany and the first decade of his personal rule), a period of crisis and rebellion culminating in the conflict between the king and Pope Gregory VII. Lampert is widely regarded as the unrivalled master among medieval historians and a superb story-teller, noted for his vivid characterisation and narrative.
This introduction provides historical background to the Annals and a discussion of Lampert of Hersfeld. During the five centuries since the appearance of the first printed edition of the Annals Lampert's work has been more studied and has also been more controversial than any other medieval chronicle. In fact the author of the Annals himself left a clue to his identity in the autobiographical passages in the annals for 1058 and 1059. The instruction in the art of Latin composition in the school of Bamberg made Lampert 'the unrivalled master among medieval historians: even his critics admit that'. In his analysis of the monastic reform movement Lampert identified its origins in a reaction against the recent cases of simony in the imperial abbeys that he associated in particular with Abbot Rupert of Bamberg and Reichenau.
This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book and background on Archbishop Wulfstan and the translated texts. The book introduces the range of Archbishop Wulfstan's political writings and sheds light on the development of English law during the early eleventh century. Understanding the origins of Wulfstan's political thought requires some knowledge of the troubled history of later Anglo-Saxon England. The book contains those homilies and homiletic fragments most closely related to Wulfstan's political writings. It includes sources and analogues of Wulfstan's political writings, such as other instances of his homiletic prose, examples of formal royal legislation produced under his supervision, and texts showing his influence. The homilies offer a useful illustration of what Wulfstan understood this role to entail and how he sought to fulfil his joint legal and episcopal obligations.
The documents in this section consist of Wulfstan’s political tracts, those texts the archbishop composed either for public circulation or as private memoranda with the purpose of articulating or advocating for some aspect of his social vision.
Archbishop Wulfstan of York is among the most important legal and political thinkers of the early Middle Ages. A leading ecclesiastic, innovative legislator, and influential royal councilor, Wulfstan witnessed firsthand the violence and social unrest that culminated in the fall of the English monarchy before the invading armies of Cnut in 1016. This book introduces the range of Wulfstan's political writings and sheds light on the development of English law during the early eleventh century. In his homilies and legal tracts, Wulfstan offered a searing indictment of the moral failures that led to England’s collapse and formulated a vision of an ideal Christian community that would influence English political thought long after the Anglo-Saxon period had ended. More than just dry political theory, however, Wulfstan’s works are composed in the distinctive voice of someone who was both a confidante of kings and a preacher of apocalyptic fervour. No other source so vividly portrays the political life of eleventh-century England: what it was, and what one man believed it could be.
This documents in this section include sources and analogues of Wulfstan’s political writings, such as other instances of his homiletic prose, examples of formal royal legislation produced under his supervision, and texts showing his influence.