Retextualisation through Contextualisation

The German ‘Reise’ (‘Voyage of St Brendan’) and the ‘Purgatory Narrative’ in the Codex Palatinus Germanicus 60 of the University Library Heidelberg

In: Amsterdamer Beiträge zur älteren Germanistik
Sebastian Holtzhauer Universität Osnabrück Deutschland

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On the basis of Cod. pal. germ. 60 (ub Heidelberg) the author shows how strategies and concepts for the arrangement of texts in medieval manuscripts can call forth and highlight certain connotations of the separate texts in a manuscript. Several texts and their included illustrations in this manuscript, among them a prose version of ‘The Voyage of Saint Brendan’, and also a German translation of the ‘Tractatus de purgatorio Sancti Patricii’, by their interference point at a ‘Narrative of the Purgatory’, which is spread like a net over the entire manuscript. Consequently, the interpretation goes beyond the usual textual analysis of the works and asks for retextualisation within the framework of a concrete manuscript context, and therefore also for their ‘status in life’. Central in the research are the strategies of legitimization of fictional contents, which take the codex into account as the communicator of text and illustrations and so draw the reality of the recipients into it, by which they are drawn into the narrated world.

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