, H. Rolfson (eds.)
580 p., 155 x 245 mm, 1996
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Gerlach Peters was a member of the so-called Devotio Moderna. In the second half of the fourteenth century this religious reform movement arose in the Northern Netherlands, and strove after spiritual renewal for everyone. Its influence on the religious life of Northwestern Europe was considerable. Its most famous member was of course Thomas a Kempis. Gerlach Peters was a contemporary and colleague of Thomas. He is considered as the most important mystical author of the Devotio Moderna. We dispose of two Middle Dutch Letters and two Latin workts, Breuiloquium and Soliloquium. His Soliloquium was widely read in the Middle Ages, and it has been reprinted and translated up until today. This is the first critical edition of Gerlach Peters' opera omnia, based on 72 extant manuscripts. The Middle Dutch Letters are accompanied by a modern English translation, whereas the medieval translations of the Latin texts have been critically edited. The book also contains an introduction in which the life and work of Gerlach are treated. Attention is paid to the existing printings (over thirty in more than four centuries and in seven different languages), reception and text history, genre, and literary-historical aspects. A Thesaurus Gerlachi Petri, Series A-B, Formae et Lemmata is forthcoming. In this book historians, theologians, mediaevalists and philologists will find new materials for the study of religious life in northwestern Europe in the fifteenth century. Texts from Jan Van Ruysbroeck and Dionysius the Cartusian have been published in the series Continuatio Mediaevalis before.
“Mikel Kors is to be congratulated for his impressive achievement. One can only hope that it will encourage subsequent editions of the literature of the Devotio Moderna as well as a renewed examination of the religious mentality reflected in its works.”
(O. Gründler, in Speculum, 75, 2000, p. 975)