Member Publications

  • 8 Mar 2020 2:06 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Publisher's description:

    This volume presents editions of two fascinating anonymous and untitled manuscripts of magic produced in Elizabethan England: the Antiphoner Notebook and the Boxgrove Manual. Frank Klaassen uses these texts, which he argues are representative of the overwhelming majority of magical practitioners, to explain how magic changed during this period and why these developments were crucial to the formation of modern magic.

    The Boxgrove Manual is a work of learned ritual magic that synthesizes material from Henry Cornelius Agrippa, the Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy, Heptameron, and various medieval conjuring works. The Antiphoner Notebook concerns the common magic of treasure hunting, healing, and protection, blending medieval conjuring and charm literature with materials drawn from Reginald Scot’s famous anti-magic work, Discoverie of Witchcraft. Klaassen painstakingly traces how the scribes who created these two manuscripts adapted and transformed their original sources. In so doing, he demonstrates the varied and subtle ways in which the Renaissance, the Reformation, new currents in science, the birth of printing, and vernacularization changed the practice of magic.

    Illuminating the processes by which two sixteenth-century English scribes went about making a book of magic, this volume provides insight into the wider intellectual culture surrounding the practice of magic in the early modern period.

  • 8 Mar 2020 1:51 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Publisher's description:

    Seeking Sanctuary explores a curious aspect of premodern English law: the right of felons to shelter in a church or ecclesiastical precinct, remaining safe from arrest and trial in the king's courts. This is the first volume in more than a century to examine sanctuary in England in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Looking anew at this subject challenges the prevailing assumptions in the scholarship that this 'medieval' practice had become outmoded and little-used by the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Although for decades after 1400 sanctuary-seeking was indeed fairly rare, the evidence in the legal records shows the numbers of felons seeing refuge in churches began to climb again in the late fifteenth century and reached its peak in the period between 1525 and 1535. Sanctuary was not so much a medieval practice accidentally surviving into the early modern era, as it was an organism that had continued to evolve and adapt to new environments and indeed flourished in its adapted state. Sanctuary suited the early Tudor regime: it intersected with rapidly developing ideas about jurisdiction and provided a means of mitigating the harsh capital penalties of the English law of felony that was useful not only to felons but also to the crown and the political elite. Sanctuary's resurgence after 1480 means we need to rethink how sanctuary worked, and to reconsider more broadly the intersections of culture, law, politics, and religion in the years between 1400 and 1550.

  • 25 Feb 2020 12:47 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)


    From the publisher:

    The Hussites, as the Bohemian reformists have come to be called, became one of the most vocal and influential reform movements of the late Middle Ages, with significance for the reformations of the sixteenth century and later. They represented an interchange between “town and gown” that was largely unprecedented in medieval Europe. Scholarship on the Hussites has a long and distinguished tradition, and current studies must continually contend with a historiography that is implicated in the nationalism, confessionalism, and politics of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. This volume gives students and scholars a clear sense of the historiography and current trends in Hussite studies, as well as concise statements on major emphases in Hussite theology, ecclesiology, philosophy, and religious practice. Contributors are: Eliška Baťová, Pavlína Cermanová, Dušan Coufal, Phillip Haberkern, Ota Halama, David Holeton, Stephen Lahey, Jindřich Marek, Pavel Kolář, Olivier Marin, Petra Mutlová, Pavlína Rychterová, Pavel Soukup, Michael Van Dussen, and Blanka Zilynská. 



  • 25 Feb 2020 12:45 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)


    Publisher's description: 

    Medicine at Monte Cassino offers unprecedented insights into the revolutionary arrival of Arabic medicine to medieval Europe by exploring the oldest manuscript of Constantine the African’s Pantegni, which is identified here, for the first time, as a product of the skilled team of scribes and scholars working directly under the supervision of Constantine himself at the eleventh-century abbey of Monte Cassino.

    Fleeing his North-African homeland for Italy, Constantine the African arrived in Salerno and then joined the abbey of Monte Cassino south of Rome in c. 1077. He dedicated his life to the translation of more than two dozen medical texts from Arabic into Latin. These great efforts produced the first substantial written body of medical theory and practice in medieval Europe. His most important contribution, an encyclopedia he called the Pantegni (The Complete Art), was translated and adapted from the Complete Book of the Medical Art by the Persian physician ‘Ali ibn al-‘Abbās al-Mağūsī (d. 982). This monograph focuses on the oldest manuscript of the Pantegni,Theorica, which represents a work-in-progress with numerous unusual features. 

    This study, for the first time, identifies Monte Cassino as the origin of this oldest Pantegni manuscript, and asserts that it was made during Constantine’s lifetime. It further demonstrates how a skilled team of scribes and scholars assisted the translator in the complex process of producing this Latin version of the Arabic text. Several members of this production team are identified, both in the Pantegni manuscript and in other copies of Cassinese manuscripts. 

    The book breaks new ground by identifying a range of manuscripts produced at Monte Cassino under Constantine’s direct supervision, as evidenced by their material features, script, and contents. In rare detail, this study explores some of the challenges met by ‘Team Constantine’ as they sought to reveal new knowledge to the West, which in turn revolutionized medical understanding throughout medieval Europe.

  • 25 Feb 2020 12:41 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)


    Publisher's Description: 

    Since the 1970s, the craft brewing industry has grown in popularity. However, with the introduction of the Internet and the consequent globalization of cultures and economies, craft beer marketing has increasingly evoked the medieval past in order to appeal to our collective sense of a lost community, and even a lost purity. This book discusses the desire for the local, the non-corporate, and the pre-modern in the discourse of craft brewing, which has become a form of ideological resistance to corporate capitalism, forming a strong counter-cultural narrative. However, such discourses also reinforce colonial histories of purity and conquest while effacing indigenous voices, and there are troubling intersections between the desire for a medieval past and the desire to preserve the imaginary “whiteness” of that past. Such considerations are particularly relevant now, during a time in which white nationalist groups (many of which turn to a medieval past for inspiration) are increasing in influence and visibility. Moving from beer in the Middle Ages to beer in 2019, this book deploys analysis of literary and historical texts, advertisements, labels, and interviews with craft brewers and writers to argue that craft beer is much more than a delicious drink and a social connector; its marketing, its appeal, and its ubiquitous presence in middle class North America reveals a powerful cultural desire for the past in a world that privileges the present.

  • 13 Jan 2020 1:56 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)


    Congrats to editor Ruth Wehlau and her contributors on the publication of Darkness, Depression, and Descent in Anglo-Saxon England, out now from Medieval Institute Publications! See the publisher's note below:

    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, 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 the burgeoning interest in trauma studies and darkness and the representation of the mind or of emotional experience within Anglo-Saxon literature.


  • 2 Jul 2019 10:01 AM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Congrats to Erik Kwakkel on the publication of Books Before Print, out now from ARC Humanities Press.



    From the publisher:
    This beautifully illustrated book provides an accessible introduction to the medieval manuscript and what it can tell us about the world in which it was made and used. Captured in the materiality of manuscripts are the data enabling us to make sense of the preferences and habits of the individuals who made up medieval society. With short chapters grouped under thematic headings, Books Before Print shows how we may tap into the evidence and explores how manuscripts can act as a vibrant and versatile tool to understand the deep historical roots of human interaction with written information. It highlights extraordinary continuities between medieval book culture and modern-world communication, as witnessed in medieval pop-up books, posters, speech bubbles, book advertisements, and even sticky notes.

    https://arc-humanities.org/products/b-66111-110116-18-6912-2/


  • 26 Apr 2019 7:55 AM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Congrats to Natalie M. Van Deusen on the publication of The Saga of the Sister Saints: The Legend of Martha and Mary Magdalen in Old Norse-Icelandic Translation, out now from Brepols.

    From the publisher:

    This book examines the cults and legends of Martha and Mary Magdalen in medieval Scandinavia, especially Iceland. While a number of parallels may be drawn between Iceland and mainland Scandinavia in terms of liturgical and artistic representations of Martha and Mary Magdalen, the Old Norse-Icelandic literary tradition stands apart from its Scandinavian counterparts in the cultural significance and relevance it gives to each of the "sister saints" in medieval Iceland, where the composite Mǫrtu saga ok Maríu Magðalenu was compiled in the mid-fourteenth century.

    The historical study that opens the volume treats the manuscripts and Latin sources of the saga, lending insight into authorship and provenance; it also details representations of Martha and Mary Magdalen in liturgical materials, art, and literature from medieval Scandinavia, before turning to the saints’ cults and legends in medieval Iceland.

    All the available evidence for the "sister saints" in Iceland from its Christianization in 1000 until around the time of the Reformation in 1550 is analyzed in detail, especially evidence from church inventories (máldagar) but also from literary works in prose and verse, as well as from charters and letters. Special attention is given to issues of style and content in the saga and, in particular, to views on women preachers in medieval Iceland.

    The book concludes with a normalized edition of the only complete redaction of Mǫrtu saga ok Maríu Magðalenu, followed by its first English translation.


  • 1 Jun 2018 4:46 AM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Alison More, Fictive Orders and Feminine Religious Identities, 1200-1600 (Oxford UP, 2018)


    From the publisher:

    Any visitor to Belgium or the Netherlands is immediately struck by the number of convents and beguinages (begijnhoven) in both major cities and small towns. Their number and location in urban centres suggests that the women who inhabited them once held a prominent role. Despite leaving a visible mark on cities in Europe, much of the story of these women - known variously as beguines, tertiaries, klopjes, recluses, and anchoresses--remains to be told. Instead of aspiring to live as traditional religious, they transcended normative assumptions about religion and gender and had a very real impact on their religious and secular worlds. The sources for their tale are often fragmentary and difficult to interpret. However, careful scrutiny allows their voices to be heard.

  • 16 Nov 2017 4:04 PM | CSM Webmaster (Administrator)

    Jennifer Garrison, Challenging Communion:  The Eucharist and Middle English Literature (Ohio State UP, 2017)

    From the publisher:

    “An important book on a subject many medievalists think we already understand but do not.” —Rebecca Krug, University of Minnesota

    In this book, Jennifer Garrison examines literary representations of the central symbol of later medieval religious culture: the Eucharist. In contrast to scholarship that depicts mainstream believers as enthusiastically and simplistically embracing the Eucharist, Challenging Communion: The Eucharist and Middle English Literature identifies a pervasive Middle English literary tradition that rejects simplistic notions of eucharistic promise.

    Through new readings of texts such as Piers Plowman, A Revelation of Love, The Book of Margery Kempe, and John Lydgate’s religious poetry, Garrison shows how writers of Middle English often take advantage of the ways in which eucharistic theology itself contests the boundaries between the material and the spiritual, and how these writers challenge the eucharistic ideal of union between Christ and the community of believers. By troubling the definitions of literal and figurative, Middle English writers respond to and reformulate eucharistic theology in politically challenging and poetically complex ways. Garrison argues that Middle English texts often reject simple eucharistic promises in order to offer what they regard as a better version of the Eucharist, one that is intellectually and spiritually demanding and that invites readers to transform themselves and their communities.

    Jennifer Garrison is Associate Professor at St. Mary’s University in Calgary, Canada.

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