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Latin Verse Inscriptions in Anglo-Saxon Art
Gesta (1996)
  • Elizabeth C Teviotdale, Western Michigan University

This article identifies the corpus of surviving Anglo-Saxon works of art with newly composed Latin verse inscriptions: 19 paintings and drawings in seven manuscripts, one carved stone, and one engraved portable altar. A significant flourishing of the practice of including verse in works of art is associated with the Benedictine monastic reform movement of the mid-10th century. The nature of the relationship, both denotative and spatial, between the inscriptions and the images they accompany is explored through the examination of selected representative examples. It is proposed that the Anglo-Saxons understood this poetry to be an essentially written and visual art form, not an oral one, and that, even as the quality of the poetry declined during the course of the late Anglo-Saxon period, the presentation remained sophisticated.

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Citation Information
Elizabeth C Teviotdale. "Latin Verse Inscriptions in Anglo-Saxon Art" Gesta Vol. 35 (1996)
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