Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions

By Leslie Lockett

© 2011

Old English verse and prose depict the human mind as a corporeal entity located in the chest cavity, susceptible to spatial and thermal changes corresponding to the psychological states: it was thought that emotions such as rage, grief, and yearning could cause the contents of the chest to grow warm, boil, or be constricted by pressure. While readers usually assume the metaphorical nature of such literary images, Leslie Lockett, in Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions, argues that these depictions are literal representations of Anglo-Saxon folk psychology.

Lockett analyses both well-studied and little-known texts, including Insular Latin grammars, The Ruin, the Old English Soliloquies, The Rhyming Poem, and the writings of Patrick, Bishop of Dublin. She demonstrates that the Platonist-Christian theory of the incorporeal mind was known to very few Anglo-Saxons throughout most of the period, while the concept of mind-in-the-heart remained widespread. Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions examines the interactions of rival - and incompatible - concepts of the mind in a highly original way.

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Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Anglo-Saxon Series
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 472 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.1in x 1.1in x 9.0in
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  • PUBLISHED MAR 2017

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Quick Overview

Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions examines the interactions of rival - and incompatible - concepts of the mind in a highly original way.

Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions

By Leslie Lockett

© 2011

Old English verse and prose depict the human mind as a corporeal entity located in the chest cavity, susceptible to spatial and thermal changes corresponding to the psychological states: it was thought that emotions such as rage, grief, and yearning could cause the contents of the chest to grow warm, boil, or be constricted by pressure. While readers usually assume the metaphorical nature of such literary images, Leslie Lockett, in Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions, argues that these depictions are literal representations of Anglo-Saxon folk psychology.

Lockett analyses both well-studied and little-known texts, including Insular Latin grammars, The Ruin, the Old English Soliloquies, The Rhyming Poem, and the writings of Patrick, Bishop of Dublin. She demonstrates that the Platonist-Christian theory of the incorporeal mind was known to very few Anglo-Saxons throughout most of the period, while the concept of mind-in-the-heart remained widespread. Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions examines the interactions of rival - and incompatible - concepts of the mind in a highly original way.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Anglo-Saxon Series
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 472 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.1in x 1.1in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions improves upon the significant work of Malcolm Godden, Antonina Harbus, Britt Mize, Eric Jager, Soon Ai Low, and Michael Matto by being impressively comprehensive in its overview of poetry and prose and of the Latin inheritance traceable in Anglo- Saxon England. The book's range and detail are extraordinary. No Anglo-Saxonist's library should be without this 495-page study."


    John Hill
    The Medieval Review

    ‘Sure to become a standard work in the field, Anglo-Saxon Psychologies in the Vernacular and Latin Traditions is one of the most original and learned discussions of Anglo-Saxon literature of the past generation. Leslie Lockett’s strikingly unique readings and thorough analyses throw a wholly new light on a stunning range of texts. With an interest that never flags, Lockett clearly and compellingly articulates a fundamental aspect of human life.’


    Michael Lapidge, Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse, and Celtic, Cambridge University
  • Author Information

    Leslie Lockett is an assistant professor in the Department of English at The Ohio State University.

  • Table of contents

    Abbreviations and Short Titles
    Note to Readers

    Introduction: Toward an Integrated History of Anglo-Saxon Psychologies

    1. Anglo-Saxon Anthropologies
    2. The Hydraulic Model of the Mind in Old English Narrative
    3. The Hydraulic Model, Embodiment, and Emergent Metaphoricity
    4. The Psychological Inheritance of the Anglo-Saxons
    5. First Lessons in the Meaning of Corporeality: Insular Latin Grammars and Riddles
    6. Anglo-Saxon Psychology among the Carolingians: Alcuin, Candidus Wizo, and the Problem of Augustinian Pseudepigrapha
    7. The Alfredian Soliloquies: One Man’s Conversion to the Doctrine of the Unitary sawol
    8. Ælfric’s Battle against Materialism

    Epilogue: Challenges to Cardiocentrism and the Hydraulic Model during the Long Eleventh Century (ca. 990–ca. 1110)

    Notes
    Bibliography
    Index

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