English Literature in the Age of ChaucerBook - 2001
Written in an engaging and accessible manner, English Literature in the Age of Chaucer serves as both a lucid introduction to Middle English literature for those coming fresh to the study of earlier English writing, and as a stimulating examination of the themes, traditions and the literary achievement of a number of particulary original and interesting authors. In addition to detailed and sensitive treatment of Chaucer's major works, the book includes chapters on his chief contemporaries, such as John Gower, William Langland and the Gawain-poet. It also examines the often underrated contribution to the English literary tradition of his successors John Lydgate and Thomas Hoccleve, as well as the interesting and original work of the Scottish poets, Robert Henryson, William Dunbar and Gavin Douglas, who also claim Chaucer as their model. Apart from the narrative poetry of Chaucer and his followers, the book also contains chapters on the Middle English lyric; Middle English prose, including Mandeville's travels; the most original and imaginative writings of the Middle English mystics, in particular Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe; and Thomas Malory's impressive prose compilation of Arthurian stories.