By George Hardin Brown
The Venerable Bede is a vital determine for Anglo-Saxonists, arguably crucial, recognized personality from the interval. A student of overseas status from an early interval of the Anglo-Saxon church [c.672-732], he used to be the writer not just of the well known Ecclesiastical historical past of the English People, but in addition of scriptural commentaries, hagiographies, clinical works, admonitory letters, and poetry. This ebook offers an informative, entire, and updated consultant to Bede and his writings, underlining specifically his value within the improvement of eu background and tradition. It areas Bede in his modern Northumbria and early Anglo-Saxon England, dedicates person chapters to his works, and features a bankruptcy on Bede's legacy for next heritage.
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1. 1 – 2. 40 Reworking Isidore of Seville’s Liber rotarum (also called De natura rerum) and pseudo-Isidore’s De ordine creaturarum, Bede created a new text, which also incorporates much from the first half of the Roman encyclopedist Pliny’s Natural History, carefully edited and re-ordered. As was his frequent custom (rare in the Middle Ages) in his biblical commentaries, Bede credited the sources from which he drew his material with a marginal citation. Although much of the book appears simple and even naive to readers in our scientific and technological age, his description of natural phenomena is as intelligent and rational as any to be found in the early Middle Ages, including Isidore’s Liber rotarum (De natura rerum).
Jones, CCSL 123A, pp. 1–57. Unlike Bede’s two systematic grammatical texts just discussed, which are structured according to topics, the little book De orthographia is organized on a different principle altogether. He himself describes it as “a book about orthography, arranged according to the order of the alphabet” (HE, V. 24). , “L by itself stands for Lucius”), it consists entirely of short entries about the meaning and correct usage or spelling of words likely to cause difficulties for a medieval Latinist.
However, Peter Kitson, “Lapidary Traditions in Anglo-Saxon England, Part II: Bede’s Explanatio Apocalypsis and Related Works,” ASE 12 (1983): 73–123 at 88, demonstrates from Bede’s use in that commentary of information in chapter 38 of Pliny’s Natural History that, contrary to Jones’s assertion, Bede also knew the second half of that work. Bede, De natura rerum, ed. Jones, CCSL 123A, p. 189. Not everyone was impressed with Bede’s poetic talents: a later glosser, while questioning whether the final couplet was Bede’s, bestows faint praise: “Fuit enim Beda versificator tolerabilis” [“Bede was a tolerable versifier”], PL 90: 188B; critics with bad judgment exist in every age.
A Companion to Bede by George Hardin Brown