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'Truthe is the beste'

A Festschrift in Honour of A.V.C. Schmidt


Edited By Nicolas Jacobs and Gerald Morgan

The thirteen essays in this book, presented in honour of Dr A.V.C. (Carl) Schmidt, are designed to reflect the range of his interests. Dr Schmidt, who was a Fellow at Balliol College, Oxford from 1972 until his retirement in 2011, is best known for his comprehensive four-text edition of Piers Plowman, the fruit of a lifetime’s work on that text. He has also made a major contribution to the study of Chaucer and the medieval English contemplatives, and these authors also find a place in this collection. The essays presented here are intended to build upon the legacy of Carl Schmidt’s exemplary scholarship.
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Chaucer’s Tellers and Tales and the Design of the Canterbury Tales


← 136 | 137 → GERALD MORGAN

S’io avessi lettor, più lungo spazio

da scrivere i’ pur cantere’ in parte

lo dolce ber che mai non m’avrìa sazio;

ma perchè pieno son tutte le carte

ordite a questa cantica seconda

non mi lascia più ir lo fren dell’arte.

— DANTE, Purgatorio, XXXIII.136–411

Never trust the teller, trust the tale. The proper function of a critic is to save the tale from the artist who created it.

— D.H. LAWRENCE, Studies in Classic American Literature2

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