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Online resources

Women's Culture

Women can't be studied apart from the broader history and literature of their time, but there are a variety of online resources that have been developed specifically to illuminate medieval women's experiences, literacies, and writings. In addition to the sites linked below, you'll want to consider the resources provided for the women writers gathered on the Major Authors page as well as those on the History and Culture page (esp. the sections on "Love and Sex").

Manuscript Resources

None of the medieval texts we read originally appeared in the tidy, uniform format of the student edition. They all circulated in handwritten, unique manuscripts (with the exception of a few early printed texts). This material fact can greatly affect how we might read this literature intertextually and the kinds of assumptions we make about readerships.


Middle English Dictionary (MED)

The Middle English Dictionary, the centerpiece of the Middle English Compendium,, is your best friend for understanding the nuances of Middle English literature. Most of the texts I assign gloss the "hard" words and/or provide a glossary at the end of the textbook, but glosses only get you so far.