Publication details

Das Eindringen der Volkssprache in die byzantinische Literatur als eines der Elemente der asteiotes

Title in English Spreading of vernacular language into Byzantine literature as one of elements of asteiotes


Year of publication 2012
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Frühmittelalterliche Studien : Jahrbuch des Instituts für Frühmittelalterforschung der Universität Münster
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Field Mass media, audiovision
Keywords Byzantine poetry; vernacular language; 12th century; experiments; town and court culture
Description The paper deals with experiments with vernacular language in Byzantine poetry of the 12th century and their common characteristics, which – as we try to prove – are one of the expressions of contemporary aristocratic and urban culture, and thereby fit into the concept of urbanitas / asteiotes. Three examples are subjected to analysis: 1st begging poetry, specifically Theodore Prodromos's works and poems connected with his name (Ptochoprodromika and so called Manganeios Prodromos's poems), 2nd the anonymous welcoming poem (eisiterioi) for Agnes of France, Alexios II. Komnenos's bride, and 3rd Constantine Manasse's versified chronicle. Using these experimental works, we are trying to present typical features of cultivated Byzantine literature associated with court culture, which, exactly in that period, finds parallels with the contemporary Western literature. One of these analogies is vernacular (or rather living) language spreading into literature.

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