Alexander Neckam (1157–1217: also spelled Nequam) is most widely known for writing the first description of the magnetic compass in western literature. He was also, however, a versatile teacher (one of the first known lecturers in Oxford) and administrator (as abbot of the Augustinian abbey of Cirencester) who took an interest in nearly everything. I argue in my dissertation that his works reflect above all a desire to make the most thorough use of the communication methods available to him to educate his students and fellow monastics, making the most recent learning from the Parisian schools applicable to their everyday lives.
To support this research, I am editing several of Alexander’s unpublished works, whose source files are available in EpiDoc/TEI format. I am focusing particularly on a florilegium (collection of excerpts) made in the thirteenth century that fascinatingly weaves together his writings into a new series of ‘sermons’.
Samuel Presbiter (fl. 1200) is entirely unknown; none of his works has been fully published in a modern edition. This is unfortunate, as his books tell us a great deal about learning in a cathedral school of the late twelfth century. I am editing his Collecta ex diuersis auditis in scola magistri Willelmi de Monte, which will appear as Notes from the School of William de Montibus. I am also working on his shorter De oratione dominica (On the Lord’s Prayer), a versification of Hugh of St Victor’s De quinque septenis. I have made available the source files for my working editions in EpiDoc/TEI format.
Alexander of Hales
Dallas Medieval Texts and Translations is sponsoring a translation of the commentary by Alexander of Hales (died 1245) on the Sentences of Peter Lombard; I am responsible for Book II, dist. 26–44.
William of Conches, Glosulae super Priscianum
Édouard Jeanueau (Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies) is directing a collaborative project to create the first edition of the enormous commentary on Priscian’s Ars Grammatica (an ancient textbook of grammar) by William of Conches (fl. 1120–54), preserved in two versions. I have assisted with editing several portions of the work.
John Scottus Eriugena, Carmina
Michael Herren (York University) is producing a new version of the poetry written by Eriugena (died ca. 877), with which I am assisting.