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Van Driela, Roeland M. Nov 11, Publication Name: Http Dx Doi Org 10 The real interest of the work lies in the implicit sense of community: God is unsar trohtin , our Lord , and the prayer concludes pittemes. The hymnic feel is unmistakable, and the text is provided in the manuscript with musical notation. The work is less easy to associate with the dedication of a specific church than with St Peter s See in Rome, something voiced long ago by Hoffmann von Fallersleben, who noted in a description of the coronation there of Henry IV in a reference to the singing by the clergy of the parallel Latin hymn, and by the laity of a German song to St Peter with the kyrie.
It is more difficult to categorise another work, again almost certainly composed under the influence of the Freising Otfrid. The final long-line of this group is repeated in the same way to begin a concluding six lines. The first part follows the Vulgate fairly closely and concludes with an idea that comes later in the Psalm, that of shunning those who do murder.
The section concludes, however, with an idea from the first part of the Vulgate text: This becomes the theme of the six-line concluding prayer for God to preserve the speaker. This time the precise year of composition is known, but the work raises an odd question: The poem was written down in France by a French scribe, from the look of his errors , probably in the monastery of St Amand, near Valenciennes.
Next to it in the otherwise Latin manuscript is an Old French hagiographic poem in the same hand. Lewis came to the throne in his teens in , and shared the West Frank territories at the Agreement of Amiens in with his brother, Carloman. Lewis III was faced with various real problems: From contemporary chronicles we know that Lewis and Carloman together defeated a would-be usurper, Boso, Duke of Provence, after which Lewis rode north and defeated a Viking force at Saucourt in Picardy in August , a victory that was bound to be the subject of immediate acclaim, but was of limited significance, since Lewis died almost exactly a year later.
In his dedicatory poem to Lewis the German, Otfrid, too, made references to God s aid in victory, to the loyal followers, to the king s ability to withstand suffering, his service of God, and to the hope of long life, all of which are echoed here. The Ludwigslied is consistently theocentric in its approach, however. The Vikings are sent by God for two reasons: The Vikings themselves are not characterised at all, because they are simply instruments, and there is none of the vivid presentation of these feared invaders found in some of the annals.
The notion of a divine scourge goes back to the Old Testament and continues well beyond the ninth century; Alcuin wrote to Ethelred of Northumbria interpreting the Viking raids on Lindisfarne in June, as a punishment against fornication, avarice, robbery , precisely the sins mentioned here. God commands Lewis we are told simply that he was away, not where he was to avenge my people, a significant formulation, and Lewis rallies his troops, joins battle and is victorious. Heliand, Otfrid and later pieces 23 special knowledge.
Lewis is not told that victory will be his, and in an address to his troops not unlike those found in Germanic heroic poetry points out that men s lives are in God s hands. They ride into battle after singing the kyrie , submissive to God s mercy, then, rather than confident of victory or of heaven. As an historical work the poem operates on three levels: A somewhat repetitious amount of critical attention has been paid to the historical context of the poem, rather than its approach to history.
Certainly it may be seen as propaganda for a young king under threat, and his birthright is underscored, but to seek specific connections with events outside the poem is of dubious relevance. Why, however, is the poem in German and not in Old French or Latin? St Amand, where the poem was probably written, had a celebrated school, attracting men from abroad, including probably this Rhenish poet.
The poem may have been intended for German speakers amongst the West Franks, but the interesting suggestion has been made that it was designed as propaganda on a broader scale. The king s German counterpart, Lewis the Younger, died in January , leaving no absolutely clear successor.
Perhaps the poem was intended to make a case to a lay nobility in Germany for the West Frank king as overall ruler? While there was an extensive tradition of Latin hagiography in prose and verse by German writers such as Walahfrid, we know of only two saints lives in German, one of which survives only in a later adaptation, so that Ratpert s life of St Gall must be considered under Ottonian Latin.
The poem was added to the Heidelberg Otfrid-manuscript by a scribe called Wisolf, who seems to have given up in mid-narrative though he still had space available with the word nequeo , I can t manage. The text is garbled, the orthography eccentric looking occasionally like dyslexia , and there are copy errors. A Latin Vita like one in St Gallen may be the source, and the dragon-slaying episode, incidentally, was not associated with the saint until far later.
Galerius of Dacia who may have had the real St George killed and who appears here as Dacianus tries to kill him in the poem, but whenever he tries to do so, we are told in a repeated line that George rose up again. This is the alliterative poem known as Muspilli St. Although the basis is the alliterative long-line, there are also rhymes.
The work has three themes: At this point the poem breaks off. The theme of the work as we have it is judgement after death, of the individual soul and of the world, and the message is clear enough: Whether Muspilli came before or after Otfrid s Gospel-book is hard to determine, and the fact that both share an alliterative line describing paradise dar ist lip ano tod lioht ano finstri there is life without death, light without darkness , need imply no more than that both writers drew on a tradition which is well attested in Latin too.
There is no evidence that either poet knew the other s work, but both had a clear idea of doomsday, and we shall encounter again homiletic poems on the same theme. But it is less than useful to try to discuss in detail what we do not have, and our sole written example is a poem of sixty-nine lines in a mixture of High and Low German, preserved, though we have no idea why, in a theological document.
The work is important because it is unique, but in spite of problems it is still clearly of literary value. A description early in the work of the two central figures putting on their armour can be matched phrase-for-phrase in Anglo-Saxon, and other formulas are repeated within the work.
Nevertheless, our manuscript is a late copy there are mistakes in it that can only have come from a written source and it is impossible to guess how many written stages preceded it. Preserved on the front and back pages of a manuscript, it is incomplete, though only a few lines seem to be missing. Its language, though, is impossible; an attempt has been made to render a work written in the Bavarian dialect the alliteration only works in High German into Low German, but with such lack of success that false forms appear.
This version was copied using some Anglo-Saxon characters probably early in the ninth century at Fulda, but when the poem was composed can only be guessed at. The poem deals with a battle between a father and a son set within a distorted but recognisable context, namely the east-west division of the Ostrogoths and Visigoths. From what is now south-west Russia, the Visigoths moved in the fifth century westwards to Rome and then to Burgundy and Spain, while the Ostrogoths remained in the east.
The Ostrogoths under Theoderic known in German as Dietrich took Rome in from Odoacer, but the poem and later German writings assume that Odoacer had driven Theoderic out of his rightful kingdom, after which he spent time as an exile at the court of Attila Theoderic s father had been an ally of the Huns , returning to regain his lands. In our poem, Hildebrand is one of Theoderic s men, who had fled with him into exile, and, having returned, has to face in single combat the son he left behind.
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The story might well have passed thence to Bavaria, and then northwards. Two champions are picked to fight in single combat before their respective forces, and we are told at the outset that they are father and son. Repetition of their names and patronymics underscores a relationship of which the father becomes aware, though the son never believes it.
Much of the work is in dialogue. Hildebrand was a brave warrior, but Hadubrand supposes, since he was always in the forefront of battle, that he must be dead. Old men, who are now dead and cannot bear witness, have told him so. There is no question of actual recognition, and the leaving of a bride means that this is an only son. When Hildebrand now states that he is the closest of relatives, the son understands, but does not believe him.
Hildebrand, furthermore, makes a mistake when he offers the son a conciliatory gift, a gold arm-ring that the narrator tells us came from Attila. To us, the ring identifies Hildebrand as a great and therefore well-rewarded warrior, albeit with some connection with the Huns. To Hadubrand, the ring identifies Hildebrand as a Hun.
He has no reason to believe this man, and his supposition that Hildebrand is dead becomes definite when he tells us that he has heard from sailors also unavailable witnesses that his father was killed in battle. The arm-ring also reintroduces the idea of inheritance. Hadubrand has clearly inherited from his father the abilities of a great warrior, but if this gold is to be his inheritance he can gain it only by earning it, that is, by defeating and killing his father.
At this point there seems to be some textual corruption, but if we accept a small amount of editing, the son now denies that his adversary was ever the exile he claims to be. Hildebrand himself realises at this point that battle is inevitable, that wewurt skihit cruel fate will take its course. We do not have the ending, but the battle is brief, and it does not seem as if much is missing. And yet the true inheritance of Hildebrand is the song itself; he could neither cheat fate nor prove his own identity, but the song preserves his fame. The only comparable long work in our period written by a German is a Latin poem of over 1, Vergilian hexameters with a large number of actual quotations from Vergil.
The superficial Christianity of the Hildebrandslied, however, is much strengthened here. There is no agreement on when, where or by whom the work was written. It has been placed in the Carolingian period and in the eleventh century, and even its ascription to Ekkehard I of St Gallen in the early tenth century is now considered unsafe. In some of the manuscripts there is a prologue by a monk who names himself as Geraldus, but since nothing is known about him, this is unhelpful.
Waltharius was composed by a young monk he tells us so in an epilogue whose native language, German, is clear from his word-plays, but who might have been writing any time between the early ninth and the end of the tenth century. Waltharius is a prince of Aquitaine, taken as hostage and brought up by Attila, together with Hiltgund, princess of the Burgundians, and Hagano, a noble youth given as hostage by the Franks in place of their prince, Guntharius. Attila did, of course, rule the Huns, and Waltharius may be identified with a fifth-century Visigoth from Toulouse.
The historical Gundahari was a Burgundian, but his seat at Worms had become Frankish by the time of the poem, so that he has become a Frank, while a fictitious princess represents Burgundy. Tribute is also paid, and the hostages are brought up at the court of Attila. When Guntharius grows up, however, he revokes the tribute, causing Hagano to flee. Attila tries to marry Waltharius to a Hun princess ensuring political stability , but Waltharius plans an escape with Hiltgund, whom he loves.
They arrange for Attila and his warriors to get drunk at a feast, escape with a great amount of treasure, and Attila, waking with a hangover, can persuade no one to pursue them. Hagano is torn between a reluctance to attack his old friend also on grounds of prudence, since Waltharius is a great warrior and loyalty to his king. The last battle is with Hagano, but after Waltharius loses a hand, Hagano an eye and some teeth, a truce is called, and a settlement made, after which Waltharius returns to his kingdom, marries Hiltgund and rules for many years.
The fighting is more vivid than in the Hildebrandslied, if some of the plot is a little contrived, including the abrupt ending. The role of Hiltgund is slight, although Waltharius s chaste behaviour towards her on their flight is noteworthy.
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Yet in spite of the language the work is a German heroic poem, in which loyalty, reputation, and the rightful possession of specific wealth here the tribute paid originally to the Huns , as well as prowess in combat all play a part. The avoidance of tragedy in particular betrays church influence, though primitive elements are still present in Waltharius s beheading of his victims.
The story was well known, and now-lost versions may have had a tragic ending, loyalty forcing Hagano to kill his friend. What we actually possess, however, is a Latin poem told thus Geraldus s preface for entertainment, but with pace and charm. The division of Charlemagne s empire by the middle of the ninth century separated Germany and France, and Charlemagne s own line in Germany came to end with the disastrous rule of Lewis the Child , who was still in his teens when he died.
Salomo III, abbot of St Gallen, wrote in about a Latin poem lamenting the misfortunes of a country under attack from the Magyars and torn internally as well. Nor was stability restored by the election of a firm military leader, the Frankish nobleman Conrad I, who died in Ottonian Latin literature As regards literature in German, the tenth century is often viewed as a kind of wasteland. Ottonian Latin literature 29 sparse in any case, and several of the works we do have were copied at that time.
The Latin literary traditions established in Germany under the Carolingians, however, continued vigorously under the Saxons and the Salians, especially biblical commentary and religious poetry, including sequences and hymns by Notker s followers at St Gallen. Existing annals were continued and new ones begun, some on the Saxons, such as the prose Res gestae Saxonicae of Widukind of Corvey, or the Historia Ononis of Liutprand of Cremona c. Of special interest, though, is a collection of short Latin poems in a manuscript copied probably in Canterbury in the eleventh century, but compiled earlier in the Rhineland, and now in Cambridge, whence the title for the nearly fifty Cambridge songs.
They include rhymed poems and several sequence-like modi, the most impressive of which, the Modus Ottinc, celebrates Otto I and his defeat of the Magyars, though it is also intended to honour his successors. The collection contains other panegyrics and coronation-poems, and there is one sequence on the life of Christ. Further pieces anticipate the Schwank , the humorous anecdote in verse: He takes the child and sells it, claiming that it melted.
Sacerdos et lupus Priest and wolf , which is described as a iocularis cantio humorous narrative , is a quasi-Aesopian fable of a priest s failure to catch a wolf, whilst the tale of Unibos, the farmer who only has a single ox, is a framework for several comic anecdotes. A much-translated poem about Heriger, archbishop of Mainz, recounts his punishment of a traveller who claimed to have visited Heaven, and one about Proterius and his daughter is a moralising piece on the avoidance of despair, a recurrent theme in later literature.
Especially effective is that about Johannes, a short but over-ambitious hermit, who wants to live like an angel, but has to learn to be a good man instead. Two poems stand out because they are macaronic, their rhymed longlines being half Latin and then half German. Suavissima nonna Sweetest of nuns is apparently a dialogue between a nun and a man not necessarily a priest, as used to be assumed , who urges the nun to come with him.
She resists, but may have changed her mind at the end of the work; we can no longer tell. The twenty-seven lines in eight strophes of two or three longlines give an account of an incident in which Henry, Duke of Bavaria, is received by the emperor Otto, after a messenger has instructed him to do so.
Otto did not become emperor until , however, and the two Henrys passage is a problem, so that the poem may be about Henry s son, the equally rebellious Henry the Quarrelsome, who was reconciled with the child emperor Otto III in and a child could have been told to receive the Duke as in the poem. But there are too many possibilities for the content to be clear. It is hard to assess the literary importance of the nun Hrotsvitha of Gandersheim a Saxon house in the Harz, closely associated with the Ottonian royal family , who was born about and died in the s.
She wrote a series of eight saints lives and legends in Latin metrical verse, one of them about Theophilus an early analogue of the Faust-legend , and also panegyrics on Otto I, but is best known for her dramatic writings. Yet to locate the beginnings of drama in Germany in the Ottonian period is at best misleading.
Hrotsvitha s Latin plays may never have been performed, and they certainly had no successors. In a preface to her collection of six short theological dialogues, all about pious ladies who either convert pagans or are themselves converted, she explains that she is imitating the comedies of the Roman dramatist Terence, and indeed, when in her Dulcitius the eponymous central figure tries to seduce three Christian women, he becomes mad and embraces pots and pans instead. The church throughout the Middle Ages objected regularly to what we have to call histrionic entertainment.
In the development of an officially sanctioned drama it is not Hrotsvitha who attracts our interest, but a tiny piece of dialogue once thought to have been composed at St Gallen specifically by a monk called Tutilo at the start of the tenth century , and certainly known there: Tropes were a dramatic embellishment to the Mass, developed especially at St Gallen, although also at the French monastery of St Martial in Limoges, and there is debate as to which was the home of this dialogue between the angel and the Maries at the sepulchre.
The angel asks whom do you seek , and then announces that Christ has risen. Notker 3i writing in German. He favoured what has been called a Mischsprache , in which the Latin is accompanied sentence by sentence by a German version, plus a commentary in Latin and then German, with some Latin words untranslated as a prompt for the learner to assimilate them. Thus at the beginning of Boethius s Consolation, Lady Philosophy is described as having eyes that see beyond those of ordinary men. Notker translates literally durhnohtor sehenten. Notker s coinages and his consistent rendering of the sense are striking, and he also developed a coherent orthography for his Alemannic dialect.
Notker s works were much copied especially the Psalter , and his Mischsprache recurs later in the eleventh century in the writings of Williram and continues well into the twelfth see N. Palmer s edition of the Klosterneuburger BuSpredigten , Preserved within Notker s writings, finally, are a few brief German poems and some proverbs. Of the former, one describes the clash of warriors and the other a monstrous boar; both illustrate rhetorical devices, and are probably of classical rather than Germanic origin. Notker was aware, finally, of an historical end that could be near. The German preface to his Boethius-translation opens with a reference to St Paul s prophecy that the day of judgement will not come until the fall of Rome, and Notker links this with Theoderic, who, as ruler of Rome, had Boethius killed.
Theoderic, too, died, and the Goths were driven out, and then came the Lombards, who ruled for more than two centuries, and nah langobardis franci. So ist nu zegangen romanvm imperivm. Beside the scraps of German in the works of Notker are others which, while evidence of a sort for vernacular literary activity, cannot be afforded much prominence St. They are usually so opaque that the over-interpretation to which they are often subjected must be viewed as suspect. Thus the nine-word Hirsch und Hinde Hart and hind, St.
The piece has been connected with folk-plays and fertility festivals, without substantial conclusions. Similarly cautious comments must be made about a number of little verses from manuscripts in St Gallen, including one that appears to be a lampoon, telling how Starzfldere returned a wife to Liubwin St. There are also some proverbs St. One final small rhymed poem is now lost, but was once carved over a school or library, probably in the late ninth century.
It was copied by the map-maker Mercator to decorate his town plan of Cologne in ; the Cologne inscription Lb. Latin literature in the eleventh century With some Latin texts we can be fairly sure that a German original lies behind them. An identifiable historical event lies behind this, but since the Latin prose suggests a rhyme in German, scholars have reconstructed an original in Old High German, though it would be an early instance of end-rhyme indeed MSD vin.
His carmen barbaricum German song was translated into the more acceptable medium of Latin by Ekkehart IV of St Gall, who was born towards the end of the tenth and died in the mid eleventh century. Three versions, in Ekkehart s own hand, of an accented metrical Latin poem of seventeen strophes of five long-lines each survive. Ekkehart mentions the melody of the original, so that the two forms may have matched, but deducing a German original is difficult. Latin literature in the eleventh century 33 by St Michael, as well as the story of the chain he wore about his body as a penance.
Latin writings in Germany in the eleventh century include the muchread commentaries of the aristocratic Bruno of Wurzburg d. Two scholars deserve special mention. The first, Otloh of St Emmeram c. He wrote on world history, astronomy, mathematics and music, and his complex and linguistically inventive sequences are typified by the use of adapted Greek words.
An interesting pendant to the hagiography of this later period is the De Mahumete by Embricho of Mainz who became bishop of Augsburg in , which presents in verse various legends of Mohammed from a Christian point of view. He wrote a eulogy for Conrad s predecessor, Henry the Saint, and his Gesta Chuonradi remains the principal source for Conrad s reign, although he is still known for the famous Easter sequence Victimae paschalis.
Later still come chroniclers like Adam of Bremen, who wrote around a detailed history of the archbishopric of Hamburg-Bremen with a wealth of comments on the Vikings. Religious and other poetry continued to flourish in Latin. Sextus Amarcius described later as satiricus, amator honestatis a satirist and lover of the truth wrote four books of Sermones a title he borrowed from Horace , directly spoken verses and dialogues, dealing satirically with sins and virtues. In one poem, three songs sung by a minstrel are identifiable as from the Cambridge songs, including that on the snow-baby.
Two final Latin poems of the eleventh century demand attention: The first is a series of eighteen fragments about 2, partly damaged lines from Tegernsee of an extended version of the folk-tale usually known as the three points of wisdom. In its basic form it is found in the medieval collection of anecdotes known as the Gesta Romanorum and in languages as diverse as Irish and Cornish , a servant is given pieces of advice in lieu of payment; he is not to leave an old road for a new one, not to lodge where an old man has a young wife, and not to act in anger.
His real payment is baked into a cake. The last fragments we have are concerned with Ruodlieb s search for a wife, and as far as can be made out, the wife suggested for him has had a previous affair with a cleric.
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Ruodlieb sends her a messenger with a love-declaration which contains four words of Old High German but also with evidence of her previous indiscretions. An outer plot tells how a runaway calf falls into the clutches of a wolf, who feeds it well for one night, prior to eating it.
The wolf s account of his hatred of the fox now forms the content of the Aesopian inner fable used again later in German in the writing of Heinrich der Glichezare , in which the fox finds a cure for the sick lion which involves flaying a wolf. Meanwhile a dog has raised the alarm with the other animals, and brings them to the wolf s lair.
When we return to the outer story, the wolf is tricked into emerging, and is gored by the bull, so that the calf escapes and returns home. The promised allegorical implications are made clear: Late Old High German prose 35 in after thirty-seven years as abbot of the small monastery of Ebersberg. In around he produced an exposition of the biblical Song of Songs that remained influential, with one manuscript copy as late as , not much more than a century before it became the object of philological study by the Dutch scholar Francis Junius in Williram s Expositio in Cantica Canticorum is formally unfamiliar, and its German component is limited.
The major manuscripts have three sometimes ornately separated columns, the central one containing in large script the Vulgate text. The left-hand column has a Latin paraphrase in hexameters, while on the right is a prose commentary in a mixture of German and Latin. Trudperter Hohelied, and was sometimes though not often copied independently. However, on other occasions even the German parts were translated into Latin. Williram s work is a late example of the opus geminatum, each part having a separate function, the hexameters enhancing and explaining, the Mischsprache clarifying the text for a different audience.
Its content is not original: Indeed, Williram claims in his preface that de meo nihil addidi I have added nothing of my own , and he is studiedly conservative, complaining that an excess of dialectic has obscured biblical interpretation. More clearly literary is the brief text known as Himmel und Holle Heaven and hell, St.
What lies behind the composition is unclear, although it may have some link with the Bamberg confession St. One late translation into Old High German is of intrinsic interest. Its single horn indicates the unity of the Father and the Son, and its capture the Virgin Birth. These are still, like the few earlier pieces, largely from patristic sources.
Of the three groups distinguished, the first has three fragments of sermons by Augustine, the second four from Gregory the Great on the Gospels, and the third some Lenten material largely from Bede. The sermons were intended either for preaching in the language, or for reading. Associated with them, and specifically with the first group, since the scribe appears to be the same, is a collection of Geistliche Ratschlage Spiritual precepts, St. Not until well into the twelfth century do we find more complete vernacular sermon collections, again designed either for reading or as handbooks for preaching.
A Benediktbeuern collection from the mid twelfth century, for example, known as the Speculum Ecclesiae Mirror of the Church , contains sermons of varying lengths, not in strict liturgical order, and sometimes with more than one for a given feast. However, the Speculum Ecclesiae and the influence of the French schoolmen take us beyond our limits.
Although attempts were made to identify these language changes with a new spirit in German literature, there is no basis for doing so. There is a gradual increase in the amount of German written, but its status is still low. The period was one of monastic reforms including that associated with the monastery of Cluny, in France , but there are no real effects upon German literature. Early Middle High German religious literature 37 vernacular writing from the monasteries to the schools associated with the cathedrals.
Where writers like Otloh and Williram were monks, named writers are now described often as secular priests or canons. Early Middle High German religious literature Virtually all of the German material in the Salian period is religious, and most of it develops from what has gone before. Thus the essential mixture in Otfrid of narrative and often homiletic commentary is found in the second part of the eleventh century in metrical adaptations of Genesis and Exodus.
A twelfth-century all-German codex now in Vienna whence the names Wiener Genesis and Exodus contains the two biblical poems written out consecutively, with rhyme-points , and between them an assonantic prose version of the Physiologus which is longer than the Old High German version. There has been some discussion over the form of the poems, although a short couplet style seems already to be replacing Otfrid s rhymed long-line.
In content, the poems draw on the authorities just as much as Otfrid did, however. Thus the creation of Adam is expanded on the basis of medieval encyclopaedias to a detailed physical description considering even the function of his little finger for digging in the ear to enable him to hear clearly, and the poet attaches to the promise made to Eve that she will bruise the serpent s head Genesis iii,i5 a homiletic excursus derived from Carolingian Latin commentaries of nearly a hundred lines on the theme of stopping sin as soon as it begins. If the Genesis-poet was a secular canon as is possible , the implied audience might, however, be a lay one.
The eleventh-century material of the Vienna manuscript was reworked towards the end of the twelfth century. The new version, the Millstatt codex, has the Physiologus in rhymed form, and a very large number of illustrations, while a further German collective codex from Vorau in Styria which also contains the Kaiserchronik has a rather different adaptation of the first part of the Old Testament in the Vorauer Bucher Mosis although the Joseph-narrative overlaps with the Vienna version , plus a number of shorter religious poems.
Shorter religious poems maintain the conservative-homiletic tone, and the year can only be an arbitrary cut-off point. The work is known as Memento mori there is no title in the original and capitals indicate nineteen strophes of four long-lines each, though a few lines are missing in the middle. The work is perhaps by Noker the name appears in the last line , abbot of Zwiefalten d. Like Muspilli, this poem stresses that no one however rich can avoid the final judgement, and again an aristocratic lay audience seems to be implied.
Another space-filler in the same manuscript is Ezzos Gesang Ezzo s hymn. Only seven strophes were written here, but in the Vorau codex is a twelfth-century augmented reworking of it. One of the additions is a prefatory verse telling how this song of the miracles of Christ , was written at the behest of Bishop Gunther of Bamberg d. The earlier version is addressed to iv herron my lords , which is changed in the Vorau text to iv. A far later fragmentary poem, the Scopf von dem lone Poem of reward , written probably in the late twelfth century by a secular canon at the Cathedral of St Martin in Colmar points out, with reference to the tax-gatherer Zachaeus and to St Martin, that the rich can also enter the kingdom of heaven in spite of Luke xviii, 24 if they lead proper lives.
The motif is unsurprising with literature aimed at a particular class, that for which Muspilli or Memento Mori was intended. Reimpredigt rhymed sermon is a term of slightly dubious validity, but the direct homiletic tone remains a key feature of early German poetry. Some vernacular poems are problematic. That known as Merigarto The world , from the last part of the eleventh century is in places now extremely hard even to decipher. The first part of this strophic poem which has some Latin headings describes seas, real and otherwise, and after another heading which refers to an unidentifiable Bishop Reginbert, goes on to say how a wise man in Utrecht had told the poet who seems to have fled there from Bavaria in time of war about a visit to Iceland and of its geography.
Frankly, very little can be made of this hydrographic enigma, although it does demonstrate the continuity of Carolingian learning. Anno II, the extremely powerful though not always entirely scrupulous archbishop of Cologne and regent for Henry IV, died in and was canonised in , although the poem the date of which is fixed by a reworked section in the Kaiserchronik , refers to him as a saint already. Nearly nine hundred rhymed lines in couplets, divided into forty-nine strophes, present first a brief history of the world from Adam to Anno , making clear once more the contrast between Adam s fall and the incarnation before moving on to the saints of Cologne and then to Anno, the latest saint given to the Franks.
The second section describes the four ages of the world based on interpretations of the dream in Daniel vii,, taking us down to Rome, and then looking at the histories of various German tribes, Swabians, Bavarians, Saxons and Franks. The latter are the inheritors of the Trojans, since the mythical eponym Franko builds eini luzzele Troie a litle Troy , on the Rhine, and of the Romans, who built Colonia Cologne. The poem now moves rapidly from the earliest stages of Christianity, and again to the Franks and Anno. The final strophes 34—49 are hagiographic, presenting Anno as the vatir aller weisin father of orphans , founder of monasteries including Siegburg , and stressing his political role.
After his death, healing miracles are associated with him. The Annolied has some relationship with Latin genres: Its mixture of theological and secular harks back to the Ludwigslied in some respects, and there are echoes, too, of Otfrid, in the linking of the Franks with the ancient world.
Otfrid simply stated that the Franks were as good as the Romans or Greeks, but the Annolied places them more firmly into an historical context which is, unlike Notker s, onward-looking.
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The divine economy of fall and redemption is present in the poem as well, however, as is the parenetic didacticism of so much early Middle High German writing; Anno entered the heavenly paradise and we should keep his example in mind. The theology is hardly new. What is different is this combination of genres in a German-language poem celebrating both a German saint and at the same time his people. It is a nice historical accident that the work was discovered by Martin Opitz, the author of Das Buch von der deutschen Poeterey Let us take just one area as an example.
The new German vernacular biblical epic in couplet verse begins in the second half of the eleventh century with the Altdeutsche Genesis also known as the Vienna Genesis, most likely c.
Die deutsche Literatur des Mittelalters. Verfasserlexikon, 2nd revised edn by Kurt Ruh et al. Introduction 41 shorter Old High German poems. Lay brothers and those monks who had entered the order later in life, rather than as child oblates, were as a rule illiterate and could only understand readings in German. It could develop its own conventions of poetic form, tonality, affective engagement with an audience and literary structure in response to the needs of a specific historical situation.
The materials presented in the works named had all been gathered from authoritative Latin sources, but these works are for the most part not simply translated from Latin. The world of oral poetry is recalled for a moment in the Annolied. The poem begins with famous lines directing the community to turn its backs on those songs on profane subjects which it had in the past favoured and to think of how we will all meet our end - and to do so inspired by the life of Bishop Anno.
This polemical passage sets the poetic life of the bishop of Cologne in a relationship to profane oral poetry, which the author condemns: Such oral tales, which might have told of the sack of Troy, the friendship of Roland and Oliver, or the downfall of King Gunther of Worms and his brothers Gemot and Giselher, formed an essential part of medieval literary culture, but in their oral form they lie outside literary history.
The author of the Annolied, who is engaged in winning attention for his religious theme, aggressively divides the world of poetry into two, so as to divorce his own subject matter completely from the secular songs. One of the earliest secular narrative texts in German, Lambrecht s Alexanderlied Song of Alexander , displays its affinity with the biblical epics by the repeated comments drawing attention to places mentioned in the Bible, and yet the author also compares Alexander s battle against Duke Mennes with that fought by heroes of oral poetry, Hagen and Wate, on the Wolfenwerde in Kudrun called the Wulpensant and with those described in the songs of the Trojans In practice, the literary culture of the period spans and unites the religious and the secular domains in a manner that is not self-evident to the modern student.
This holds, for example, for Hartmann von Aue s self-representation as an author in Iwein, for Heinrich von Veldeke s account of how his work on the Eneide was broken off and taken up again for a new patron, or Pfaffe Konrad s statements about the composition of a Latin intermediary version of the Chanson de Roland in the course of his composition of the Rolandslied for Henry the Lion. Major works could only be written with the support of a patron, and may in some cases have been discontinued when that support failed for example through the death of the patron.
There are, however, cases of authors such as Wirnt von Grafenberg c.
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Written literature was for the most part read out from the book to an audience, but by the end of the twelfth century there may already have been some private reading. The route to that skill lay through elementary instruction in Latin, such as was needed for reading prayers and the Psalter. It is not until the later Middle Ages that there is evidence of reading in German being taught as the first language. Among those who were able to read books for themselves women are likely to have been considerably more numerous than men.
Twelfth-century secular narrative 43 Twelfth-century secular narrative This account of years of literary history will have to be selective, but as a first step let us consider, in precis, a complete tabulation of secular narrative literature in the twelfth century. The Nibelungenlied Song of the Nibelungs and Klage Lament , which were both composed some time around , are omitted in order to allow these poems to be considered in the context of a slightly later period.
The same applies to the Lanzelet of Ulrich von Zatzikhoven c. The inclusion of these works, which take their name from the professional performers Spielleute who were once thought to have composed them, will add a further dimension to the problem of literary chronology - and also serve to remind of a problem. Consequently the tabulation of twelfth-century texts can provide a basis for the discussion of narrative literature throughout the whole period which follows.
Kaiserchronik The chronicle of the emperors , 17, vv. Alexanderlied The song of Alexander, by Pfaffe Lambrecht , 1, vv. Konig Rother King Rot her , 5, vv. Herzog Ernst Duke Ernst, version A , fragments of vv. Trierer Floyris, fragment of vv. Strafiburger Alexander, 7, vv. Rolandslied The song of Roland, by Pfaffe Konrad , 9, vv. Eneide by Heinrich von Veldeke , 13, vv. Miinchner Oswald , couplet verse, c.
Graf Rudolf Count Rudolf , fragments of 1, vv. Erec by Hartmann von Aue , 10, v v - 5 rhyming couplets, c.
Synonyms and antonyms of Locanda in the German dictionary of synonyms
Tristrant by Eilhart von Oberg , 9, vv. Reinhart Fuchs Reinhart the Fox, by Heinrich , extensive fragment of vv. Iwein by Hartmann von Aue , 8, vv. Twelfth-century secular narrative 45 Orendel, 3, vv. Metamorphosen by Albrecht von Halberstadt , fragments of c. Salman und Morolf, five-line strophes, composed in the later twelfth century , but surviving only in a later version copied in the second half of the fifteenth century, probably Rhenish. The themes of these works reflect the interests and social position of the noble and princely patrons by whom they were commissioned, and for whose households they provided not only entertainment and instruction but also a public manifestation of political aspirations.
The first identifiable centre of literary patronage is Regensburg, a prosperous trading city with important monasteries, particularly St. Emmeram and the new twelfth-century foundation Prufening, and the focal point of both the Duchy of Bavaria and the Diocese of Regensburg. Here, in the mid twelfth century, the composition of the Kaiserchronik is to be sought, the first vernacular chronicle of world history in any European language, tracing the history of the Holy Roman Empire from Julius Caesar to Konrad III, elaborating the account of the early emperors with legends and adventure stories e.
Some of the unnamed patrons will surely have been of lower social status, but they are all to be sought among the leading noble families. An association can be seen between some aspects of the subject matter of the Rolandslied, composed in the early s, and the personal history of Duke Henry the Lion. The relevant themes are the veneration of the emperor Charlemagne, given new impetus by his canonisation in , the interaction between the princes of the realm represented by Roland and the peers and emperor, and the crusade against the heathen.
Duke Henry, as the leading member of the Welf faction, a powerful family with lands in Swabia and northern Italy and from the later eleventh century dukes of Bavaria, was the most powerful of the German princes during the first half century of Staufen rule and a potential rival of Frederick Barbarossa, although for much of the period up to the s he was treated as a valued political ally. His court was at Braunschweig, but the Rolandslied has generally been associated with his second centre of power, Regensburg. On the basis of his family and his actual power he was able to present himself as a royal person: We find this projection of himself both in the iconographic programme of the manuscript illumination commissioned by Henry especially in the Gospel-book of Henry the Lion and in the epilogue to the Rolandslied.
Twelfth-century secular narrative 47 was involved in battles with the Slavs, leading to extensive Christianisation and colonisation of the eastern territories adjacent to Saxony. These campaigns and his journey to Jerusalem in , undertaken in the spirit of a crusade, provide a point of reference for the crusading themes of the Rolandslied. The Eneide is derived at one remove from Vergil s Aeneid. It tells the story of how the Trojan duke Eneas flees to escape from the victorious Greeks after the sack of Troy and is subjected to years of wandering and a series of testing adventures, including a liaison with Dido queen of Carthage, a visit to the underworld, and prolonged battles against Duke Turnus in Italy.
Finally he goes on to fulfil his destiny to marry Lavine, daughter of King Latin of Laurente, and to become ruler over all Italy. Further links with the world of the present are introduced by the claim that Barbarossa found the tomb of Pallas, a young man who died fighting for Eneas, with the lamp still burning, when he went to Italy to receive the imperial crown in ; and by the statement that the wedding festival of Eneas and Lavine has only ever been surpassed by Barbarossa s festival at Mainz in , when his sons were knighted.
Through his association with the Eneide Hermann could be presented as a promoter of Staufen ideology. Hermann s patronage of the Eneide, taken together with his commissioning of the Liet von Troye and his association with Albrecht von Halberstadt s Metamorpbosen, suggests that Hermann was interested in school-orientated subject matter that brought with it the prestige of Latin learning. This ideal of a literate and learned ruler who is a patron of literature was entirely new, especially in the German context, and puts him on a par with Count Henry I of Champagne and Philipp of Flanders who were noted patrons of French literature.
When later Walther von der Vogelweide states Ich bin des milten lantgraven ingesinde I am a member of the landgrave s retinue: Towards the end of his life Hermann was also the patron of Wolfram von Eschenbach s Willehalm and is associated with his Titurel. Ten of the eighteen works listed above are adaptations of French or Occitan poems. Such borrowings were unknown before the Alexanderlied of Pfaffe Lambrecht, which is generally placed in the middle of the twelfth century, although there is no good reason why it could not be somewhat later. The earliest adaptations from French were made in the west, where we can assume there to have been more frequent contact with the French nobility.
The marriage of Henry the Lion, for example, to the English princess Matilda in marks out the route by which the Chanson de Roland may have been transported from the French and Anglo-Norman world to Germany. Imitation of French also has an impact on the form of German poetry: A progression can be plotted through the Strafiburger Alexander, the Eneide the first poem to use pure rhyme and Iwein on to the poets of the next generation, where in Gottfried von StraSburg c.
It should be noted that the exploitation of French models to create a new German literature took place in the context of a bilingual German-Latin literary culture, in which poetic adaptation from Latin did not achieve a comparable status. The rhetorical principles of adaptation may have been based on what was taught, through the medium of Latin, at school, but the German narrative literature of the period established itself as a distinct entity in response to that of the French and Anglo-Norman courts.
Similar authors to follow
The poets of these works, where they are not veiled in total anonymity, are but names and cannot be identified with persons known from other sources. The one possible exception is Eilhart von Oberg, the author of Tristrant probably c. Twelfth-century secular narrative 49 imperial or princely families, came to exercise power equal to that of the nobiles. Setting aside those poems like the Trierer Floyris and Graf Rudolf whose anonymity may be due to their fragmentary nature, it can be observed that the poems with a named author are those that are adapted from a French or Latin source.
It seems that composition as literary adaptation was conceived to be a more highly personalised activity than the poetic formulation of traditional subject matter e. Some will have been monks or canons, whereas others will have belonged to the clergy with minor orders - the numerous group of clerici who performed a range of duties requiring literacy or religious training for the princes and minor nobility. It must be envisaged, however, that there was a considerable degree of orality involved in their poetic production - in the mode of composition, which is not to be imagined as being performed pen in hand, and in the recitation of their work to an audience.
Whether the poets prepared their own manuscripts of their compositions, or whether rather the writing out of a text in the vernacular required the skill of a specialised scribe who would work from dictation, is hard to say. Certainly there are no grounds for supposing the German poets of this generation to have been illiterate - nor is it part of their image.
Pfaffe Lambrecht, Heinrich von Veldeke and Hartmann von Aue stand out, in that they are known as the authors of several works. Veldeke and Hartmann, like Wolfram von Eschenbach and Gottfried von StraSburg in the next generation, are also known as the poets of Minnesang that is, the courtly love lyric. These passages provide rare documentation of lay literacy at a time when in Germany there is as yet little evidence of men without clerical training being able to read. In Hartmann s case, however, clerical training cannot be said to be precluded by his status as dienstman ministerial.
In the Rolandslied c. At the sound of Roland s horn Karl turns back, but arrives too late. He takes revenge on Marsilie before returning to Aachen to settle with Genelun. The plot of the Strafiburger Alexander, written about the same time, is similarly structured by military campaigns which take him back and forward across the rivers Euphrates and Strage in his struggle against Darius, then to India, and finally to Paradise. Here the unsuccessful wooing expedition for the daughter of King Constantine by proxy is followed, in a second cycle, by Rother s own expedition disguised as an exiled warrior, and then in a third cycle, after the princess has been snatched back, Rother conducts his final military expedition against King Constantine and the heathen invaders and wins the princess back once more.
The parallelism of narrative cycles imposes an implicit comparison of what has been achieved in different parts of the poem on the audience. It is also an aesthetic principle creating unity. Twelfth-century secular narrative 5i literary programme.