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Harvey Miller
L. Fagin Davis
La Chronique Anonyme Universelle
Reading and Writing History in Fifteenth-Century France

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VI+439 p., 97 colour ill., DVD, 220 x 280 mm, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-905375-55-4
Languages: English
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Retail price: EUR 175,00 excl. tax
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The first comprehensive study of the Chronique Anonyme Universelle, a lavishly illustrated scroll history of the world from Creation to the fifteenth century.

This volume presents the first comprehensive study of the Chronique Anonyme Universelle, a lavishly illustrated scroll history of the world from Creation to the fifteenth century. Working in a French noble library around the year 1410, the anonymous compiler of the Chronique told the story of humanity – nearly six thousand years by his reckoning – by editing historical texts at his disposal, arranging them in parallel columns on a vertical scroll, and filling the inter-columnar space with complex genealogical diagrams. The Chronique reflects a particular and particularly French self-image and worldview that become increasingly apparent as the reader traverses its direct and unbroken line from the Bible, Egypt, Greece and Troy to the histories of the Papacy, the Roman and Holy Roman Empires, the Crusades, and the royal houses of France and England. The present volume includes an extensive study of the sources, origin, transmission and illustration of the Chronique along with a critical edition, facing translation, and the entire  miniature cycle of manuscript W (ca. 1465, now in private hands). Using an innovative image-annotation platform, the DVD insert provides access to a complete digital facsimile of the manuscript, giving the user wide-ranging search and browsing functionality along with complete access to the manuscript, transcription, translation and genealogical diagrams.

«(…) on doit se féliciter de l’importance de cet ouvrage, tant pour la mise a disposition d’un texte et d’un cycle iconographique très significatifs, que pour les modalités de publications retenues. Dans les débats actuels sur les choix a faire entre des éditions imprimées et des supports numériques, l’équilibre trouve ici est remarquable.» (Christian Heck, dans le Bulletin Monumental 174.2, 2016, p. 234)

Review

"(...) her magisterial book (...) It is a tribute to Lisa Fagin and to her stimulating book that I want to know still more about these rolls as objects and about their production and consumption." (Anne D. Hedeman, in: The Medieval Review 16.03.11)

"Such a monumental work devoted to the critical edition, accompanied by an eclectic and compelling study of one of the most successful universal chronologies spread in fifteenth-century France, is without doubt of the greatest interest from a historical, sociological, philological, codicological, and art historical standpoint." (Michela Cecconi, in Renaissance Quarterly, LXIX, 2, 2016, p. 722)

“Overall, this is a luxurious and exhaustively detailed critical edition and translation of immense value to scholars of medieval French historiography, particularly of the Hundred Years’ War, as well as of the history of the material text and of the medieval reader, especially the female reader.” (Elizaveta Strakhov, in Manuscript Studies, 1/2, 2016, p. 368)

"Lisa Fagin Davis's edition of the fascinating and little-known Chronique Anonyme Universelle is nothing short of a tour de force (...) Davis delivers an exhaustively researched and meticulously designed final result (...) Overall, this is a luxurious and exhaustively detailed critical edition and translation of immense value to scholars of medieval French historiography (...)" (Elizaveta Strakhov, in Manuscript Studies, 1/2, 2016, p. 364-368)

“This is a magnificent volume (…) Lisa Fagin Davis is to be congratulated. She has brought to light a wonderful new resource that will be of tremendous interest to scholars of late medieval France, to those interested in chronicles in general and to those keen to explore the potential of chronicle rolls in particular. It also raises important questions for those interested in the digital humanities.” (Chris Jones, in H-France Review, 17/7, 2017)

Interest Classification:
Book History, Manuscript Studies & Palaeography
Palaeography, Scripts & Manuscript Studies
Roman scripts & Western manuscripts
Fine Arts & Performing Arts
Painting
Medieval painting

This publication is also distributed by: ISD, Marston
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