Medieval cantors and their craft : music, liturgy and the shaping of history, 800-1500 / edited by Katie Ann-Marie Bugyis, A.B. Kraebel and Margot E. Fassler.

Woodbridge, Suffolk : A York Medieval Press publication in association with The Boydell Press, an imprint of Boydell & Brewer Ltd, 2017.
xvii, 370 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.


Library of Congress genre(s)
Summary note
Cantors made unparalleled contributions to the way time was understood and history was remembered in the medieval Latin West. The men and women who held this office in cathedrals and monasteries were responsible for calculating the date of Easter and the feasts dependent on it, for formulating liturgical celebrations season by season, managing the library and preparing manuscripts and other sources necessary to sustain the liturgical framework of time, and promoting the cults of saints. Crucially, their duties also often included committing the past to writing, from simple annals and chronicles to more fulsome histories, necrologies, and cartularies, thereby ensuring that towns, churches, families, and individuals could be commemorated for generations to come. The contributions here seek to address the fundamental question of how the range of cantors' activities can help us to understand the many different ways in which the past was written and, in the liturgy, celebrated across the middle ages. Cantors, as this volume makes clear, shaped the communal experience of the past in the Middle Ages; the essays are studies of constructions, both of the building blocks of time and of the people who made and performed them, in acts of ritual remembrance and in written records.
" .. we were able to begin work on this book with a superb conference at the Notre Dame London Centre in October 2013." -- p. xiv.
Bibliographic references
Includes bibliographical references and indexes.
Action note
Committed to retain in perpetuity — ReCAP Shared Collection (HUL)
  • The Carolingian period. Historia : some lexicographical considerations / David Ganz ; Liturgy and history in the early Middle Ages / Rosamond McKitterick ; Notker Bibliothecarius / Susan Rankin ; Singing history: chant in Ekkehard IV's Casus sancti Galli / Lori Kruckenberg
  • The eleventh century. Adémar de Chabannes (989-1034) as musicologist / James Grier ; Cantor or canonicus? In search of musicians and liturgists in eleventh-century Constance / Henry Parkes ; Shaping the histroical Dunstan : many lives and a musical office / Margot E. Fassler ; Female monastic cantors and sacristans in central medieval England : four sketches / Katie Ann-Marie Bugyis
  • England in the twelfth century. Cantor, sacrist or prior? The provision of books in Anglo-Norman England / Teresa Webber ; Symeon of Durham as cantor and historian at Durham Cathedral priorym c. 1090-1129 / Charles C. Rozier ; Reshaping history in the cult of Æbbe of Coldingham / Lauren L. Whitnah ; William of Malmesbury as a cantor-historian / Paul Antony Hayward ; Lex orandi, lex scribendi? : The role of historiography in the liturgical life of William of Malmesbury / Sigbjørn Olsen Sønnesyn ; Of the making of little books : the minor works of William of Newburgh / A.B. Kraebel
  • On the continent : five case studies. The cantors of the Holy Sepulchre and their contribution to Crusade history and Frankish identity / Cara Aspesi ; Shaping liturgy, shaping history : a cantor-historian from twelfth-century Peterhausen / Alison I. Beach ; The Roman liturgical tradition according to a twelfth-century Roman cantor / Peter Jeffery ; A life in hours : Goswin of Bossut's office for Arnulf of Villers / Anna de Bakker ; Writing history to make history : Johannes Meyer's chronicles of reform / Claire Taylor Jones.
  • 9781903153673 (hardback)
  • 1903153670 (hardback)
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