IMC 2009: Sessions

Session 1104: The Metre of Alliterative Verse

Wednesday 15 July 2009, 11.15-12.45

Organiser:Noriko Inoue, University of Bristol
Moderator/Chair:Paul R. Dryburgh, Henry III Fine Rolls Project, Department of History, King's College London
Paper 1104-aA-Verses in the Destruction of Troy: A Historical Perspective
(Language: English)
Nicolay Yakovlev, Oxford English Dictionary
Index terms: Language and Literature - Old English, Language and Literature - Middle English
Paper 1104-bCrowded A-Verses in Langland
(Language: English)
Macklin Smith, Department of English, University of Michigan
Index terms: Language and Literature - Old English, Language and Literature - Middle English
Paper 1104-cThe Caesura in Middle English Alliterative Poetry
(Language: English)
Noriko Inoue, University of Bristol
Index terms: Language and Literature - Old English, Language and Literature - Middle English
Abstract

The metre of Middle English alliterative verse is a subject which remained relatively neglected for much of the last century until a new impetus was given to it by the work of, most notably, Hoyt Duggan, whose findings regarding the rules governing the b-verse (the second half of the alliterative line) have provided a focus for renewed interest in the subject. Since the structure of the a-verse – where, by contrast, no metrical regularity has yet been established – is now attracting attention, the present seems a timely moment in which to have a session dedicated to this subject. Accordingly, Nicolay Yakovlev first examines the metrical structure of the a-verse in the Destruction of Troy. Macklin Smith then focus on the crowded a-verses of Piers Plowman, which is followed by Noriko Inoue who speaks about the medial caesura as a marker of the conclusion of the a-verse.