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Text & Image in René d'Anjou's "Livre des tournois", c. 1460: Constructing Authority and Identity in Fifteenth-Century Court Culture Presented with a Critical Edition of BnF, ms. français 2695

Sturgeon, Justin (2015) Text & Image in René d'Anjou's "Livre des tournois", c. 1460: Constructing Authority and Identity in Fifteenth-Century Court Culture Presented with a Critical Edition of BnF, ms. français 2695. PhD thesis, University of York.

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Abstract

This thesis addresses René d'Anjou's "Livre des tournois" as a holistic product of late-medieval court culture. It argues that the work can only be decoded when text and image are considered as inseparable mutually exegetic components. This thesis adopts an interdisciplinary methodology and draws on a diverse range of visual, historical, material and literary sources. The structure is based on a series of focussed case studies into aspects of the "Livre des tournois" that have been understudied or are in need of reconsideration. Chapter 1 explores the relationship between the work's images and text and the impact on the author's identity as an authority on the subject. Chapter 2 scrutinises the use and depiction of heraldry essential to the construction of a visual narrative within the work. Chapter 3 addresses the heralds' duties and how these roles compare to the precedents found in late-medieval tournament and court culture. Chapter 4 examines René's influences and sources by focussing on the similarities between the form of tournament described and historic precedents related to the combat, location, participants and equipment. Chapter 5 utilises spatial and ritual theories to engage with a series of spectacles surrounding the punishment and review of the tourneyers in relation to group identity. Chapter 6 analyses the codicological, textual and visual evidence from all eight known medieval manuscript copies and demonstrates a revised understanding of the provenance and transmission of the work, before scrutinising the reception of two copies in detail. The conclusion draws together threads of identity, authority and the importance of the book as a product of the culture and circumstances of its production. A series of appendices support this thesis, including a scholarly edition of BnF, ms. fr. 2695, a revised stemma, and comparative tables of the codicological data of all extant manuscript copies.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Text Image Chivalry Tournament René d'Anjou Livre des tournois Fifteenth 15th Century Court Culture Interdisciplinary Codicology Manuscript 2695 Copying Transmission France Burgundy Rhine Germany Weaponry Armour Treatise Visual Narrative Angevin Status Identity Book Authority Heraldry Herald Imagination
Academic Units: The University of York > History (York)
The University of York > History of Art (York)
The University of York > Centre for Medieval Studies (York)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.675114
Depositing User: Mr Justin Sturgeon
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2015 16:12
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2018 15:21
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/11345

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