Baldwin, usually referred to as Baldwin of Forde, was successively archdeacon of Totnes, abbot of Forde, bishop of Worcester, and archbishop of Canterbury until bis death in 1190. His sermones appear to have been fairly widely distributed and were used in the compilation of florilegia; bis De commendatione fidei, while not so widely read, remains an important witness to the monastic view of the nature and importance of faith in the later twelfth century.
Until this edition, the only editions of Baldwin's sermones available - those prepared by Bertrand Tissier (and reproduced in volume 204 of the Patrologia latina) and Robert Thomas (in the series Pain de Cîteaux)-were both unsatisfactory. That of Tissier was based on a single manuscript (Troyes, Bib. Mun., 876) and that of Thomas on two (Troyes, Bib. Mun., 876 and 433). Neither used the oldest and most important manuscript of the collection, Paris, Bib. Nat., lat. 2601, which also includes two sermons not to be found in the Troyes collections. The editor of this present edition has selected the Paris manuscript as the base and has utilized all other surviving manuscripts of Baldwin's sermons in the establishment of the text. For the first time, therefore, we have in a single volume the entire known corpus of the sermones of Baldwin of Forde. In the case of the De commendatione fidei, the situation was even more serious. There was only one edition available, that of Tissier (reproduced in the Patrologia latina) which was based on a single Longpont manuscript now lost. Furthermore, the reproduction of this edition in the pages of Migne was marred by a large number of errors and misprints. The edition in CCCM 99 is based on the two surviving manuscripts of the work (though it takes into account the variants in Tissier's version), and therefore presents for the first time in three centuries a sound and reliable text of this important and neglected treatise.
The critical editions of the sermons and De commendatione fidei are preceded by an introduction describing the manuscripts, analyzing their interrelationships, and placing the various works in their historical context. And, as is customary in the editions of the Corpus Christianorum, the volume is completed by the usual indexes.