Bound Fast With Letters: Medieval Writers, Readers, And Texts by Richard H. RouseBound Fast With Letters: Medieval Writers, Readers, And Texts by Richard H. Rouse

Bound Fast With Letters: Medieval Writers, Readers, And Texts

byRichard H. Rouse, Mary A. Rouse

Paperback | June 15, 2013

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 580 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store

Out of stock online

Not available in stores


Bound Fast with Letters brings together in one volume many of the significant contributions that Richard H. Rouse and Mary A. Rouse have made over the past forty years to the study of medieval manuscripts through the prism of textual transmission and manuscript production. The eighteen essays collected here address medieval authors, craftsmen, book producers, and patrons of manuscripts from different epochs in the Middle Ages, extending from late antiquity to the early Renaissance, and ranging from North Africa to northern England. Their investigations reveal valuable information about the history of texts and their transmission, and their careful scrutiny of texts and of the physical manuscripts that convey them illuminate the societies that created, read, and preserved these objects.
The book begins in Part I with articles on writers from the patristic era through the twelfth century who experimented with, and mastered, various physical forms of presenting ideas in writing. Part II contains essays on patronage and patrons, including Richard de Fournival, Jean de Brienne, Watriquet de Couvin, Pope Clement V, the Counts of Saint-Pol, and Christine de Pizan. Part III, on manuscript producers, discusses the questions, for whom? and by whom? were manuscripts made. The four essays in this section each reflect on a different part of the process of book-making. Throughout, Bound Fast with Letters focuses on the close ties between the physical remains of literate culture—from the wax tablets of the patristic era to the vernacular literature of the wealthy laity of the late Middle Ages—and their social and economic context.
"The common denominator shared by all of these essays is the human dimension, constituting in some ways a people-oriented history of the book and the book trade. The collection emphasizes the experimental nature of book production, the communities of artisans of the book, and the practicalities of life in them, the movement of scribes and artists, and the expectations of patrons. All of the articles place manuscript production in historical, social, and cultural contexts." —Keith Busby, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Richard H. Rouse is professor of history emeritus at University of California, Los Angeles. Mary A. Rouse is former managing editor of Viator. They are coauthors of a number of books, including Manuscripts and Their Makers. Commercial Book Producers in Medieval Paris, 1200–1500 (Harvey Miller Publishers, 2000).
Title:Bound Fast With Letters: Medieval Writers, Readers, And TextsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:720 pages, 10 × 7 × 1.4 inPublished:June 15, 2013Publisher:University of Notre Dame PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0268040338

ISBN - 13:9780268040338

Look for similar items by category:


Editorial Reviews

“These astonishing episodes, recovered from erasures tucked between books of the Bible, are emblematic of the Rouses’ method. Combining codicology, deep archival research, bibliographical mastery, and, most important, deep sympathy for their historical subjects, their own collaboration uncovers the most varied examples of teamwork in the past. In the process, their persistent, probing scrutiny renders visible a Middle Ages previously lost from view.”—Common Knowledge “[Bound Fast with Letters] a useful and frequently humbling compendium of what one particular approach to manuscript study can reveal as it is exercised over many years and on a broad spectrum of materials. . . The many discoveries about the Middle Ages laid out in Bound Fast with Letters—discoveries made through extraordinarily skilled research and explained with erudite lucidity—demonstrate the value of Richard and Mary Rouse’s approach to the study of the past.” —Modern Philology “Over four decades the Rouses’ prolific work on medieval manuscripts has continuously advanced knowledge in this field by providing convincing answers to and unique examples of the way books were conceived, constructed, copied, illuminated, commissioned, sold, and used. . . . The result is a breathtaking stretch of work ranging from writing practices in fifth-century Northern Africa to fifteenth-century commercial book-making in France and Italy.” —Manuscripta