Medieval Institute Publications at Western Michigan University publishes the series Publications of the Richard Rawlinson Center for Anglo-Saxon Studies and Manuscript Research as well as volumes of the Old English Newsletter Subsidia.This series reinforces the Center's mission to foster teaching and research in the history and culture of Anglo-Saxon England and in the broader field of manuscript studies.
This monograph examines the practice of Anglo-Saxon prayer outside of the communal liturgy. With a particular emphasis on its practical aspects, it considers how small groups of prayers were elaborated into complex programs for personal devotion, resulting in the forerunners of the Special Offices. With examples being taken chiefly from major eleventh-century collections of prayers, liturgy, and medical remedies, the methodologies of Anglo-Saxon compilers are examined, followed by five chapters on specialist kinds of prayer: to the Trinity and saints, for liturgical feasts and the canonical hours, to the Holy Cross, for protection and healing, and confessions. Analyzing prayer in a wide range of different situations, this book argues that Anglo-Saxon manuscripts may have included far more private offices than have so far been recognized, if we see them for what they were.
This collection of essays examines the motifs of darkness, depression, and descent in both literal and figurative manifestations within a variety of Anglo-Saxon texts, including the Old English Consolation of Philosophy, Beowulf, Life of Saint Guthlac, the Junius manuscript, the Wonders of the East, and the Battle of Maldon. Essays deal with such topics as cosmic emptiness, descent into the grave, and recurrent grief. In their analyses, the essays reveal the breadth of this imagery in Anglo-Saxon literature as it is used to describe thought and emotion, as well as the limits to knowledge and perception. The volume investigates the intersection between notions of darkness and the burgeoning interest in representations of the mind and of emotion within Anglo-Saxon literature.
Rhonda L. McDaniel
In The Third Gender, McDaniel addresses the idea of the "third gender" in early hagiography and Latin treatises on virginity and then examines Ælfric's treatment of gender in his translations of Latin monastic Lives for his non-monastic audiences. She first investigates patristic ideas about a "third gender" by describing this concept within the theoretical frameworks of monasticism provided by the four Latin Doctors and illustrated in the early Latin Lives of Roman martyrs, revealing the importance of memory in the construction of the monastic "third gender." In the second section McDaniel turns to creating a historical and theological cultural context within which to locate an interpretation of Ælfric's portrayals of male and female saints in his Old English translations of Lives of Saints, applying this context to Ælfric's Lives and providing insights into the ideas about monastic gender that Ælfric translated (or declined to translate) for his non-monastic audience.