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Assembling Ælfric: Reconstructing The Rationale Behind Eleventh And Twelfth-Century Compilations

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Chapter Summary

Focusing on the manuscript context of three works by Ælfric-De duodecim abusivis, De falsis diis, and the Interrogationes Sigeuulfi in Genesin-this chapter examines a few factors that may have played a role in the compilation of the manuscripts in which they were transmitted. Most Ælfrician works survive in four or fewer copies. Some of the exceptions are obvious, such as his major collections: the Catholic Homilies, or the Lives of Saints. CCCC 178, pp. 1-163 + CCCC 162, pp. 139-60, written in the first half of the eleventh century, is a collection of two books of homilies by Ælfric, followed by Latin and Old English versions of the Benedictine Rule. The manuscript is instructive for the study in two key respects: the presence alongside Abusivis, De falsis diis, and the Interrogationes first of De auguriis, and then of possible selections from one of Ælfric's Commonplace Books.

Keywords: Ælfric; Catholic Homilies; De duodecim abusivis; De falsis diis



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