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Lessons for the Priest, Lessons for the People: Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Audiences for Handlyng Synne

Lessons for the Priest, Lessons for the People: Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Audiences for Handlyng... Chapter 7 : Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Audiences for Handlyng Synne Skidmore College Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Handlyng Synne (ca. 1338)1 is a compendium of sixty-six colorful exempla: ghost stories, miracle tales, saints' legends, and other accounts of intrusions of the supernatural into everyday life. Mannyng translated the Anglo-French poem Manuel des Pechiez2 for priests to use in order to entertain and educate their lay listeners, whom Mannyng characterizes as lovers of tales, rhymes and games. Mannyng not only renders the French into English (both in language and sensibility), but also freely adds and omits tales, supplements and replaces commentary, shifts the emphasis from homily to narrative, and, in particular, adds to the existing lessons for the lay audience in both exempla and commentary a layer of instruction to the priests who use his book.3 Previous studies of Handlyng Synne have identified the genre and cultural traditions to which the work belongs. Scholars agree that Handlyng Synne was likely to have been used to move and direct hearers to make confession to their priest. Many note Mannyng's tolerance for human folly, his refusal to discuss punishment, and his sympathy with speakers of English as victims of social oppression.4 http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Essays in Medieval Studies West Virginia University Press

Lessons for the Priest, Lessons for the People: Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Audiences for Handlyng Synne

Essays in Medieval Studies , Volume 21 (1) – Mar 31, 2004

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Publisher
West Virginia University Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 Illinois Medieval Association.
ISSN
1538-4608
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Chapter 7 : Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Audiences for Handlyng Synne Skidmore College Robert Mannyng of Brunne's Handlyng Synne (ca. 1338)1 is a compendium of sixty-six colorful exempla: ghost stories, miracle tales, saints' legends, and other accounts of intrusions of the supernatural into everyday life. Mannyng translated the Anglo-French poem Manuel des Pechiez2 for priests to use in order to entertain and educate their lay listeners, whom Mannyng characterizes as lovers of tales, rhymes and games. Mannyng not only renders the French into English (both in language and sensibility), but also freely adds and omits tales, supplements and replaces commentary, shifts the emphasis from homily to narrative, and, in particular, adds to the existing lessons for the lay audience in both exempla and commentary a layer of instruction to the priests who use his book.3 Previous studies of Handlyng Synne have identified the genre and cultural traditions to which the work belongs. Scholars agree that Handlyng Synne was likely to have been used to move and direct hearers to make confession to their priest. Many note Mannyng's tolerance for human folly, his refusal to discuss punishment, and his sympathy with speakers of English as victims of social oppression.4

Journal

Essays in Medieval StudiesWest Virginia University Press

Published: Mar 31, 2004

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