Book Series Medieval Texts and Cultures of Northern Europe, vol. 22

Parisian Confraternity Drama of the Fourteenth Century

The 'Miracles de Nostre Dame par personnages'

Donald Maddox, Sara Sturm-Maddox (eds)

  • Pages: 258 p.
  • Size:160 x 240 mm
  • Illustrations:14 b/w, 3 tables b/w.
  • Language(s):English, Old English, Old French
  • Publication Year:2008

  • ISBN: 978-2-503-52852-6
  • Hardback
  • Available
  • ISBN: 978-2-503-53905-8
  • E-book
  • Available


“Overall, the research presented in Parisian Confraternity Drama of the Fourteenth Century hews to a high standard and offers a first-rate model for the study of late medieval drama.” (Susannah Crowder, in: The Medieval Review, 10.01.07)

"Anyone with an interest in medieval theatre, or in the late medieval reception of twelfth- and thirteenth-century hagiography, epic, and romance, will find much useful and stimulating material here." (in: Medium Aevum, LXXIX (2010), p. 180-181)


Parisian Confraternity Drama of the Fourteenth Century is the first volume of studies devoted solely to the Miracles de Nostre Dame par personnages. These anonymous plays, found in a single luxury manuscript, comprise the only major corpus of dramatic works in French that have survived from the fourteenth century. They derive from a rich diversity of sources: narrative miracle accounts, saints’ lives, epic chansons de geste, vernacular romances, and history. Each play is preceded by a richly detailed miniature, some two dozen include a sermon in prose, and each includes at least one rondel to be sung by the cortege accompanying the Virgin. They constitute both a collective demonstration of the fervent late-medieval devotion to the Virgin, and a substantial archive of contemporary insights into the issues of power, authority, and influence that struggled for dominance in fourteenth-century Paris. As this extraordinary collection has, in its entirety, attracted little critical attention to date, this volume will be of significant interest to scholars wishing to explore the plays in their literary context, as well as those interested in medieval drama, the Marian tradition, and the role of confraternities in fourteenth-century French culture.