Title Background

The Manuscripts of the Major English Poetic Texts.

The Manuscripts of the Major English Poetic Texts.

Like those of the Confessio Amantis and the Canterbury Tales, manuscripts of PPl were in circulation before 1400, several derive from an early workshop, and some copies were in private hands by the 1390s. As opposed to Confessio manuscripts, there are no carefully prepared and corrected exemplars of PPl manuscripts, and PPl was often copied along with other religious or didactic works, rarely with more than minimal decoration, and more often outside of London. By the middle of the fifteenth century there is evidence of greater standardization in the layout of texts, with most PPl manuscripts using a smaller format than Chaucer or Gower manuscripts, often single-column with forty lines to the page.


Griffiths and Pearsall, Book Production and Publishing in Britain 1375-1475, 257-78.

Cross Reference



Edwards, A. S. G., and Derek Pearsall.