Middle Ages

New PDF release: A Cosmos of Desire: The Medieval Latin Erotic Lyric in

By Thomas C. Moser Jr.

Thomas C. Moser, Jr. explores the interesting physique of medieval Latin erotic poetry present in English manuscripts. His learn describes the highbrow and social context from which the good erotic songs of the 12th century emerged, and examines numerous erotic poems, from tuition workouts to the terrific lyrics present in Arundel 384. He additionally illuminates the effect of neoplatonic philosophy in this poetry, explicating key neoplatonic texts and employing that evaluation in shut readings of erotic lyrics from a similar interval and milieu.

A Cosmos of wish will curiosity students of medieval literature in addition to experts in Latin poetry and philosophy. scholars of center English literature will locate that it fills an enormous hole in our realizing of English highbrow lifestyles among the 12th and the fourteenth century. All Latin prose and poetry is translated, a few works for the 1st time, and the ebook is generously illustrated with pictures of the manuscripts discussed.

Thomas C. Moser, Jr. is affiliate Professor of English on the college of Maryland, collage Park.

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Additional resources for A Cosmos of Desire: The Medieval Latin Erotic Lyric in English Manuscripts (Studies in Medieval and Early Modern Civilization)

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They are philosophical in the sense that they examine the nature of heteroerotic attraction as it might be mediated through letters, but they are not moralistic and offer no clear criticism of eros of the sort we just observed in three of the four poems from the Zurich collec- tion. Like "De puero," they have the air of the schoolroom and the literary exercise about them. If, as critics have imagined, these epistles were actually sent to young women, the most likely recipients were women, not necessarily nuns, living at the convent of Le Ronceray in Angers during the time the poet taught in that city,86 although there is no compelling reason to suppose these poems were composed for any individual.

30 He moves on to the sort of detailed description of the face that becomes stan- dard among the twelfth-century rhetoricians. Certain details speak specifically to Bathsheba's erotic power: the eyes "micant; 'coeamus' sunt quasi dicant" [sparkle; they are as if they say "let us go together"] and the mouth "os lactet, ... 31 Whatever she is, Bathsheba came about through Nature's mediation: Vt breuiter noscas totum qui noscere poscas: Hac nihil in forma natura dedit sine norma. Nil minimum, nichil est nimium per corpus.

38 30 A COSMOS OF DESIRE Odo banishes to the wintry woods those humorless contemporaries who reject the classical past for its religious errors. The grace and moderation Odo shows in his own character-his "facies mitis" and "clemens," his "forma modesta" are reflected in the style and content of carmina that avoid anything "quod corda oneret, quod pregrauet aurem" [that would oppress the heart, that would burden the ear]; permit neither "aspera, difficilis obscenaque dictio" [harsh, difficult, and obscene speech] nor the "turpis hiatus" [deformed hiatus]; and strive to flow "lepido, facili, pronoque...

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