The focus of this volume may be summed up as "The Word". Its essays examine the contents and provenance of manuscripts which were written for polemical purposes, treasured by the duchess of York, and through the new medium of print introduced to a wider public topics of historical interest and illustrations of the geography of the known world. The essays here also consider official records of forest administration, expressed in arcane language; documents preserved in the papal curia which reveal significant facts about the lives of Scottish bishops; archives produced by the English chancery noting the movements of a royal councillor; and letters, poems and songs exposing the political strategy of a German prince. Nor is the spoken word neglected, whether employed in speeches delivered at the start of parliaments, using as their themes scriptures and classical texts to set a political agenda; or as sermons to open-air congregations gathered at St. Paul's Cross, where the oratory of Bishop Alcock stirred his listeners in different ways.
Contributors: Michael Bennett, Julia Boffey, Paul Cavill, J.M. Grussenmeyer, Tom Johnson, J.L. Laynesmith, John Milner, Ben Pope, Dan E. Seward, Sarah Thomas