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Fontes Anglo-Saxonici: A Register of Written Sources Used by Authors In Anglo-Saxon England: Seventeenth Progress Report


Peter Jackson, for the Management Committee


It is very pleasing to be able to report a further year of continuing progress for Fontes: as noted in the list printed at the end of this report, thirteen more Old English texts, yielding over 4000 entries, have been added to the database. These include a very substantial contribution (over half the total) from Professor Roy Liuzza completing his submission on the Old English Gospels, and nearly 500 entries on four poetic texts by Dr. Daniel Anlezark, a former Research Associate who, like others before him, has continued to support the project loyally. Dr. Susan Irvine sourced MS E of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle while preparing a new edition of that text, and Professor Malcolm Godden's current research on the Alfredian corpus produced 125 entries on the Soliloquies. Over forty further Old English texts are either in the course of being sourced, or have been sourced and are awaiting editing and incorporation in the database – texts ranging from homilies (Ælfrician and anonymous) to saints' lives (Pantaleon) and poetry (Guthlac B).

As always, the project is immensely indebted to Dr. Rohini Jayatilaka, who has been associated with Fontes since 1994 and is now in her third and final year as Research Associate and Database Manager. In addition to the laborious (and largely invisible) task of editing and processing many thousands of entries in the past year, Dr. Jayatilaka has herself sourced, and added to the database, Æthelwold's Old English translation of the Benedictine Rule (over 700 entries); made a presentation about the project at the ISAS conference in Helsinki; prepared and distributed hundreds of instructional flyers; and has been working with a computer consultant in the final stages of development of the CD-ROM version of the database. With Professor Godden and Mr. Stewart Brookes, she also addressed a session on "Alfred, Ælfric, and the Rewriting of Old Books," held at the International Medieval Congress at Leeds in July 2001. It is little surprise, then, that the Arts and Humanities Research Board, who funded Dr. Jayatilaka's present appointment, notified us in January 2002 that Fontes "was considered to be progressing well and generating a great deal of interest and response."

It was also a pleasure to welcome Dr. Joana Proud, of Manchester University, on her appointment as temporary Research Assistant in the summer of 2001, using the balance of a grant originally awarded in 1999. During the four months of her tenure, Dr. Proud sourced the Old English versions of the Life of St James the Greater, the Rule of Chrodegang and the Life of Pantaleon – all now either added to the database or nearly so. Dr. Proud is now employed on Professor Don Scragg's project on spelling variants in eleventh-century manuscripts, but hopes to make further contributions to Fontes as time permits.

On the Latin side, work has unfortunately been interrupted. Dr. Katharine Scarfe Beckett, whose appointment as AHRB Institutional Research Fellow at Cambridge University was notified in the last report, resigned her post in September 2001 on taking up a position in Jordan, though before leaving she had been able to complete several hundred entries on Bede's Historia Ecclesiastica which will be processed and added to the database. In the meantime, Cambridge has now appointed a successor for the balance of the AHRB Fellowship: Mr. Augustine Casiday, who has submitted a Ph.D. thesis at Durham University on John Cassian, and who will begin work on 1 June 2002, concentrating initially on Aldhelm's prose De Virginitate. It should also be noted that Professor Malcolm Godden has just completed sourcing Ælfric's excerpts from the Prognosticon of Julian of Toledo.

There were meetings of the Management Committee in Cambridge in May 2001 and in Birmingham in October 2001. The Committee has been further strengthened by the addition of Professor Clare Lees, who generously hosted the eighteenth Open Meeting at King's College London on 16 April 2002, including, as always, papers from doctoral students and established scholars.

By the end of March 2002, 1145 texts had been sourced and 28,546 entries added to the database (21,948 in Old English and 6598 in Latin), and well over 1000 source-texts identified. Offers of further assistance, in either Old English or Latin, are, however, always welcome – especially so as the AHRB grant under which Dr. Jayatilaka is employed is about to end. Potential contributors in the Old English field should contact Professor Don Scragg (Manchester Centre for Anglo-Saxon Studies, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK), and in the Latin field, Dr. Rosalind Love (Robinson College, Cambridge, CB3 9AN, UK); while enquiries about the database should be addressed to Dr. Rohini Jayatilaka, either via the Fontes website or by e-mail (fontes@english.ox.ac.uk).

April 2002



Fontes entries added to the database since 1 April 2001

Old English

C.A.1.2, ANON (OE), Exodus, D.C. Anlezark, 250 entries

C.A.3.14, ANON (OE), The Order of the World, D.C. Anlezark, 13 entries

C.A.3.2.1, ANON (OE), Guthlac A, Catherine Clarke, 31 entries

C.A.3.28, ANON (OE), Pharaoh, D.C. Anlezark, 2 entries

C.A.31, ANON (OE), Seasons for Fasting, Mary P. Richards, 35 entries

C.A.6, ANON (OE), Meters of Boethius, D.C. Anlezark, 207 entries

C.B.10.3.1, AETHELWOLD, Benedict of Monte Cassino, Regula, R. Jayatilaka, 720 entries

C.B.10.4.1, ANON (OE), Chrodegang of Metz, Regula Canonicorum, Joana Proud, 188 entries

C.B.17.9, ANON (OE), Anglo-Saxon Chronicle MS E, Susan Irvine, 287 entries

C.B.3.3.11, ANON (OE), St James the Greater, Joana Proud, 59 entries

C.B., ANON (OE), Old English Gospels (Luke), R.M. Liuzza, 1138 entries

C.B., ANON (OE), Old English Gospels (John), R.M. Liuzza, 880 entries

C.B.9.4, ALFRED, Augustine, Soliloquies, M.R. Godden, 125 entries