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Picture of Earthly Honest Things

Earthly Honest Things

Collected Essays on Piers Plowman

Author(s): A. V. C. Schmidt

Book Description

Earthly Honest Things brings together the complete shorter writings of a leading international authority on William Langland. Of A. V. C. Schmidt’s recent two-volume Piers Plowman: A Parallel Text Edition, Derek Pearsall has said in Speculum that ‘By any standards, it is a monumental achievement … resolute, patient, deeply learned … magisterial. … Schmidt … is always interesting and writes with a controlled passion.’ Lawrence Warner in The Medieval Review has called this edition ‘nothing short of awe-inspiring’ and Andrew Galloway in The Yearbook of Langland Studies has noted how ‘under Schmidt’s brilliant attention to the poem’s scenic and poetic originality, an editorial and literary attentiveness shines luminously throughout.’

Including four that are completely new, these twenty-five pieces cover a wide range of topics, from critical essays on the poem’s imagery, structure, themes and intellectual and literary background (including the philosophical, devotional and mystical traditions) to more technical studies of its text and metre.

The previously published essays have been thoroughly revised, updated and cross-referenced, and are provided with a full Bibliography and an Index. Together they represent an indispensable companion to the poem for Langland specialists and an exciting introduction for students to one of the most challenging and rewarding masterpieces of medieval English literature.


ISBN-13: 978-1-4438-3791-0
ISBN-10: 1-4438-3791-1
Date of Publication: 01/06/2012
Pages / Size: 425 / A5
Price: £49.99


A. V. C. Schmidt, MA, DLitt, was until 2011 Bradley-Maxwell Fellow and Senior English Tutor at Balliol College, Oxford where he is now an Emeritus Fellow. His main works on Langland include two major editions of Piers Plowman and a critical study The Clerkly Maker: Langland’s Poetic Art.