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Susan M. Johns

example the countergift apparently functioned as payment of relief. Matilda de Avranches in the late twelfth century received one gold mark for making recognition by charter of a vassal entering lands by right of inheritance.26 When Basilia, daughter of Ailrich, c. 1210–15 quitclaimed lands to Robert, son of Matilda, she finalised the agreement in the court of her lord. For the quitclaim and her abjuratione Robert gave her 6s and his wife, Anne, gave Basilia a robe, peplum.27 This example shows that both husband and wife were involved in giving countergifts to seal a

in Noblewomen, aristocracy and power in the twelfth-century Anglo-Norman realm
Open Access (free)
Susan M. Johns

tenant to Holywell Priory, London, in which Earl William received seven marks and Hawise two bezants.3 The other charter records the enfeoffment of Richard de Lucy, a justiciar of Henry II, on Gloucester lands. Both Hawise and Earl William received a gold ring in return for recognition.4 Not only was Countess Hawise a regular witness to the acta of her husband, Earl William, in 1185 she witnessed a charter of Margaret, the widow of Henry II’s eldest son, Henry the Younger.5 How can we account for such a high level of visible public activity by a twelfth

in Noblewomen, aristocracy and power in the twelfth-century Anglo-Norman realm
Open Access (free)
Susan M. Johns

of Worcester portrays both the countess Mabel and Stephen’s queen Matilda as proactively involved in the negotiating process. Both the queen and Mabel are portrayed as supporting their husbands, negotiating with each other through messengers. It is striking that there is no disparaging comment, only recognition of their actions as peacemakers, and indeed power brokers, involved in careful diplomacy.41 Later in the twelfth century Petronella countess of Leicester was also involved in the military campaigns of her husband.42 The main subject of Jordan Fantosme

in Noblewomen, aristocracy and power in the twelfth-century Anglo-Norman realm
Open Access (free)
Susan M. Johns

the countesses of Chester in the affairs of the honor may have declined through the twelfth century. A statistical breakdown illustrates this apparent decline. The figures show involvement as either witness or (co-) alienor, since both represent proactive behaviour, authority, recognition and influence. No distinction is made between types of grant, or beneficiary. The earliest record sources show that Ermentrude was involved in three out of her husband’s five charters – i.e. a participation rate of 60 per cent. Lucy was involved in 11 per cent of her husband

in Noblewomen, aristocracy and power in the twelfth-century Anglo-Norman realm
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Old things with new things to say
James Paz

artefacts and in the scholarship that has circled those lives. At the same time, this is not a conversation that can be easily contained by human discourse; when we talk with things, something always has eluded, and always will elude us. The fact that Anglo-​Saxon writers and craftsmen so often employed riddling forms or enigmatic language balances an attempt to speak 217 Afterword: Old things with new things to say 217 and listen to things with a tacit recognition that these nonhuman wihtu often elude, defy and withdraw from us. What are the outcomes of this study of

in Nonhuman voices in Anglo-Saxon literature and material culture
Open Access (free)
On Anglo-Saxon things
James Paz

(ontology): our recognition of nonhuman others that can speak (‘I am’) and be spoken about (‘it is’) helps us to ‘enlarge both our sense of human perception and our understanding of alternate ways of being in the world’.41 But riddling speech relies on the skilful deployment of silence for its effect. Silence can conceal key clues which, if spoken, would demystify the riddles and make the thing familiar again. Additionally, silence is as crucial as the incitement to ‘say what 15 Introduction: On Anglo-Saxon things 15 I am called’ in making the reader talk. Those

in Nonhuman voices in Anglo-Saxon literature and material culture
Unreadable things in Beowulf
James Paz

displaying of Æschere’s head is noteworthy in itself. Bill Griffiths, for instance, finds evidence for a cult of the head in Anglo-​Saxon tradition, and what lies behind this cult (and similar ones elsewhere in time and place) is the ‘importance of voice, as messenger between different levels of existence, in combination with a practical recognition of the head as the source of hearing, speech and sight (and perhaps intelligence)’.34 A beheading episode also occurs in Ælfric’s Life of St Edmund.35 Here, the Vikings attempt to sever the dead king’s head from his body in an

in Nonhuman voices in Anglo-Saxon literature and material culture
Ad Putter

permit effective repetitions of diverse kinds, because only the distinctness of some “unit” (person, act, place, or even phrase) allows sharp recognition of recurrence’.22 Percyvell’s obvious segmentation has precisely this virtue of highlighting a pattern of recurrence. Especially noticeable, thanks to the spareness of the poem’s time-place coordinates, is the recurrence of a season and a setting. I quote the lines that follow on directly from the passage quoted above: He thoghte on no thyng Now on his moder that was – MUP_McDonald_09_Ch8 181 11/18/03, 17:05 182

in Pulp fictions of medieval England
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Geoffrey Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde and John Lydgate’s Troy Book
Heather Blatt

constructing authorship also implicitly constructs readership as well. Thus, even though emendation invitations predate Chaucer, his adoption of the emendation invitation signals both recognition of its influential work in constructing readership through a participatory reading practice, and promotes to other writers its utility in constructing relations among writers, texts, and readers – a promotion traceable through how Lydgate and Norton, and many other authors influenced by Chaucer, adopt the emendation invitation even as they use variations of it. That these examples

in Participatory reading in late-medieval England
Open Access (free)
Reading practices and participation in digital and medieval media
Heather Blatt

ownership of a text, has been well studied, the reader plays an often overlooked, albeit central role. For, among the topics to which late-medieval English writers repeatedly turn when considering both their authority and that of their texts, the issue of what readers, not just writers, should do develops as a central concern. This both recognizes the identity of an English reading public, as Katharine Breen has discussed, while building on that recognition to consider what the lay vernacular reader could and might do.2 Hoccleve’s friend did not volunteer this response to

in Participatory reading in late-medieval England