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Books on Middle English Lyrics

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  Medieval Lyric: Middle English Lyrics, Ballads, and Carols
by John C. Hirsh, ed.
Blackwell Publishing, 2004
"A lively and engaging collection of lyrical poems, carols, and traditional British ballads written primarily between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries, together with some twentieth-century American versions of the ballads. The volume introduces readers to the rich variety of Middle English poetry and includes poems of mourning and of celebration, poems dedicated to the Blessed Virgin and to Christ, poems inviting or disparaging love, poems about sex, and more.In order to make the collection as reader-friendly as possible, modernized letter forms, punctuation and capitalization are used throughout, and side glosses explain difficult words. In addition, the editor provides a substantial introduction to the medieval lyric as a whole, as well as short introductions to each section and each poem. To support further exploration of Middle English poetry, there are three appendices containing lyrics by Chaucer and other Middle English poets, and an annotated bibliography." —The Publisher

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  Middle English Lyrics
by Maxwell S. Luria and Richard L. Hoffman
Published by W.W. Norton & Company, Dec 1974
"[T]he only anthology which includes all thirty-one English lyrics from MS Harley 2253, all the verses by Friar Herebert printed in Brown XIV, and all the important poems given in Robbins' Secular Lyrics.
In all there are 245 lyrics, arranged thematically.... "Critical and Historical Backgrounds" are provided in essays....In all, twenty-five poems are discussed in the essays." —The Publisher

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Cover of the book  Medieval English Lyrics : 1200-1400
(Penguin Classics)
by Thomas G. Duncan (Editor)
Penguin USA, April 1,1996
"These Middle English lyrics, edited anew from
the original manuscripts, are presented in a
readily readable form. An extensive glossary
is provided beside the text to aid readers who
have little or no acquaintance with Middle English.
Thomas Duncan provides a full commentary on
textual and linguistic issues, and in his introduction
he gives an illuminating appraisal of the lyrics,
their forms, themes and context."
—Penguin Books
Synopsis and Table of Contents
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Cover   One Hundred Middle English Lyrics
by Robert D. Stevick (Editor)
Univ of Illinois Pr (Pro Ref), April 1,1994
A great collection of Middle English Lyrics.
"A standard college text and a useful intro-
duction to the medieval lyric in all its variety."
—The Reader's Catalog.
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Cover   Medieval English Lyrics : A Critical Anthology
by R.T. Davies (Editor)
Paperback Reissue edition
Northwestern Univ Pr; December 1988
"A rich sampling of the early English tradition."
—The Reader's Catalog.
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Cover   English Medieval Religious Lyrics
by Douglas Gray (Editor)
Univ of Exeter Pr; June 1992
"Provides a representative sample of the major genres
of English medieval religious lyric. The arrangement of
the texts should be an important part of its value as an
instrument of teaching and understanding, and the notes
are extensive."—Card Catalog.
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Cover   Lyrics of the Middle Ages : An Anthology
(Garland Reference Library of the Humanities, Vol. 1268)
by James J. Wilhelm (Editor)
Garland Pub; July 1990
"The most comprehensive anthology of medieval lyrics
ever published in English. 110 authors, including 9 women;
295 selections, including some hymns and narratives;
11 photographs; and 14 linguistic areas."
—Midwest Book Review.
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Cover   Medieval Ballads : Chivalry, Romance, and
Everyday Life : A Critical Anthology

by Gwendolyn A. Morgan (Editor)
Peter Lang Publishing, December 1996
"A comprehensive selection of these important poems
in modern translation, organized according to theme
and accorded brief synopses of their sources, motifs,
interpretive problems, and cross-references."
—Card Catalog
Synopsis and Table of Contents

Critical Studies:


  A Companion to the Middle English Lyric
by Thomas G. Duncan, ed.
Published by D.S. Brewer, 2005
"The essays in this volume aim to provide both background information on and new assessments of the lyric. By treating Middle English lyrics chapter by chapter according to their kinds - poems dealing with love, with religious devotion, with moral, political and popular themes, and those associated with preaching - it provides the awareness of their characteristic cultural contexts and literary modalities necessary for an informed critical reading. Full account is taken of the scholarship upon which our knowledge of these lyrics rests, especially the outstanding contributions of the last few decades and such recent insights as those of gender criticism." —The Publisher

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  I Have a Young Suster: Popular Song and the Middle English Lyric
by Karen Boklund-Lagopoulou
Published by Four Courts Press, 2001
"Combines a structuralist approach with study of manuscript context to analyse the workings of 'non-courtly, non-ecclesiastical' medieval ballads and potential ballads... the lyrics of Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Rawlinson D.913 (including 'Irlaunde' and 'Maiden in the mor lay'); 'Judas'; lyrics from London, British Library MS Sloane 2593; outlaw ballads, including but not limited to Robin Hood material; comic ballads such as 'King John and the Bishop'; ballads of the Otherworld, such as 'Thomas of Erceldoune'; historical ballads; and items from Richard Hill's commonplace book (Oxford, Balliol College MS 354). She suggests that much of the appeal of Middle English lyric... comes from a basis in folk songs." —Nicole Clifton

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