A universal history

Chronicle of England, from Brutus to Edward the II (Prose Brut, short version)
England, early fourteenth century

University Library, MS Gg.1.15, f. 11r
England, fourteenth century
Vellum, 227×135 mm (170 x 86 mm), I + 200 + I ff.

The Prose Brut, also known as The Chronicles of England, was the most popular and authoritative account of English history during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The original chronicle, composed in French around 1300, was later updated by anonymous continuators and translated into Latin and English. According to the legend, Brutus, a descendant of Aeneas, travelled from Troy to England and established the first dynasty of English kings, thereby giving his name to Britain. This all-inclusive history also contains an important section devoted to Arthurian legend. The work was crucial for the conception of the British past during the late Middle Ages. Its materials were largely accepted by antiquaries and exploited by playwrights until the Tudor period. This manuscript entered the University Library collection sometime before 1851.

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