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Nighman (2013 Congress)

Chris L. Nighman
(Wilfrid Laurier University)
“Peter of Blois’s Letters and the Manipulus Florum: Editorial Agency in Thomas of Ireland’s Reception of Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Ms. Latin 16714″

Abstract of Paper at the 48th International Congress on Medieval Studies (Kalamazoo, 2013)
Session on “The Making of Medieval Manuscripts:  Analyzing the Materials and Methods of Scribes, Compilers, and Artists”
Organized by Sarah J. Biggs (The British Library / The Courtauld Institute of Art)
Sponsored by the Research Group on Manuscript Evidence
2013 Congress

[First published on our first website on 15 May 2013]

In their 1979 monograph on this florilegium Mary and Richard Rouse determined that Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Ms lat. 16714, a manuscript collection of the letters of Peter of Blois, was formerly owned by Thomas of Ireland, who bequeathed it and several other manuscripts to the library of the Sorbonne.  They also noted that it was almost certainly Thomas himself who created a subject index at the front of this manuscript.

In the process of editing the Manipulus, I have been struck by Thomas’ editorial practice in splicing together disparate passages and otherwise altering them; this method is especially in evidence with regards to quotations derived from Peter’s letters.  Because his actual source manuscript survives, we can gain insights into Thomas’ intention in manipulating and transmitting these textual fragments, and indeed his attitudes towards his own editorial authority in so doing.


Prof. Nighman is the general editor of the online critical edition of the Manipulus florum, the influential Latin florilegium compiled at Paris by Thomas of Ireland in 1306.  Please visit this source via

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  1. […] Chris L. Nighman (Wilfrid Laurier University), “Peter of Blois’s Letters and the Manipulus Florum:  Editorial Agency in Thomas of Ireland’s Reception of Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Ms. Latin 16714″  Nighman (2013 Congress) […]