Vita Edwardi secundi [electronic resource] : the life of Edward the Second /
re-edited text with new introduction, new historical notes, and revised translation based on that of N. Denholm-Young by Wendy R. Childs.
[Rev. ed.].
Oxford : Clarendon Press, 2005.
lx, 270 p. ; 23 cm.
More Details
series title
Oxford : Clarendon Press, 2005.
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
language note
Text in English and Latin on facing pages.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. [viii]-xiii) and indexes.
A Look Inside
Bowker Data Service Summary
Written by an anonymous monk of Malmesbury, the 'Vita Edwardi secundi' is one of the most important sources for early 4th century history. This edition provides a more substantial historical introduction, as well as improved annotations, in line with modern standards of textual editing.
Main Description
The Vita Edwardi Secundi is the best and most readable of the chronicles of the reign of Edward II, and throws a fascinating light on the world of high politics. The anonymous author was close to the centre of politics, probably a royal clerk, and possibly John Walwayn (or someone with asimilar career). His focus is largely on domestic politics and the relationship of the king and his barons, and he records the clashes and reconciliations of the period 1311-22 in valuable detail. He also has much to say on the Scottish war, the appointment of bishops, and the outbreak of the Frenchwar. The work ends in the winter of 1325/6 with Queen Isabella's refusal to return from France while Despenser remained with the king. The work is much more than a simple chronicle. The author consciously wrote history and so commented extensively on personalities, and also on causation, motivation, and the vices of his age. He was generous to Gaveston despite his pride, more condemning of the Despensers' greed, and lamentedLancaster's wasted gifts. His reports on the arguments of both sides in the clashes between the king and his opponents are particularly enlightening, and show how serious were the threats to the king's authority, especially those voiced in 1321. The author's fear of civil war and attempts to definethe fine line dividing resistance and treason probably reflect the concerns of many close to the court at that time. Recent research has emphasized that the Vita should be seen as a 'journal' rather than a 'memoir', and this enhances its value further, allowing historians to chart the changing views of a well-placed observer during the dramatic events of Edward's reign.The Vita has been edited three times before, once in each century since its discovery in 1728, but the last edition of 1957 has long been out of print. This new edition revises the Latin text and translation, provides a completely new introduction and historical notes to take account of recentscholarship, and includes a new and full apparatus and indices.
Table of Contents
Abbreviationsp. viii
Introductionp. xv
The Manuscriptp. xv
Hearne's transcriptp. xv
The date of West's manuscriptp. xvii
The date of composition of the Vitap. xix
Contemporary historical sources of the Vitap. xxiii
The authorship of the Vita, and its literary sourcesp. xxiv
The Reign of Edward II and the Value of the Vitap. xxxii
The reign of Edward IIp. xxxii
Recent historiographyp. xxxii
The value of the Vitap. xxxvii
Chronological contentp. xxxix
Themesp. xlvii
Personalitiesp. xlvii
Kingship, resistance, and treasonp. lii
Previous Editionsp. lviii
Editorial Conventionsp. lviii
Textp. lviii
Translationp. lix
Vita Edwardi Secvndip. 1
Siglap. 3
Concordancep. 249
Index of Quotations and Allusionsp. 251
General Indexp. 256
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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