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A critical and comparative study of Beroul's Tristran

Bromiley, Geoffrey N. (1979) A critical and comparative study of Beroul's Tristran. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



This thesis is a study of Boreal's version of the Tristan legend. Its aim is a better understanding of the romance through an examination of the work itself and of those versions of the legend with which it is associated. Part One of the thesis begins with a survey of the manuscript and of the various editions and goes on to suggest the policy that might be adopted when a more reliable text is sought. (The three appendices are also concerned with textual problems.) There then follow - a review of Tristan scholarship and an appraisal of the relationship between the various representatives of the legend. Beroul's romance is seen as an independent derivative of a lost work and as an influence upon the Folie Tristan of Berne. In Part Two, each of the episodes in Beroul's work is examined. If an episode is also found in other versions, the parallel accounts are scrutinized and emphasis is laid upon those elements which are found to be quite peculiar to our romance. Those episodes in the romance which have no equivalent elsewhere are also examined and suggestions are made as to their possible provenance. At the same time, the structure of the romance is compared with that of other versions. Beroul emerges as a writer who has on occasion re-ordered inherited episodes, in order to present more clearly his own conception of the legend. In the Conclusion, the significance of the parallel versions is ascertained, before Beroul's own conception of the legend is determined. Beroul consistently presents Tristan and Iseut as guilty sinners, but who are yet never beyond redemption, and he draws on theological support in order to suggest that by the end of the romance they are set on the road to salvation.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Date:1979
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:18 Sep 2013 10:29

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