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“Modest but Well-Deserved Claims”: The Friendship of Samuel Fox and Joseph Bosworth and the Study of Anglo-Saxon in the Nineteenth Century

In: Amsterdamer Beiträge zur älteren Germanistik
Author: Daniel Thomas1
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  • 1 University of Oxford, Großbritannien
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Abstract

Joseph Bosworth’s copy of Samuel Fox’s 1835 edition of The Metres of Boethius, presented to him by the editor, contains (pasted to the covers) a fragmentary record of the correspondence between the two men which must have extended from 1833 until Fox’s death in 1870. Partial and short as it is, this record of the two men’s correspondence, read in the context of other contemporary documents, gives an interesting (and sometimes amusing) insight into the practice of Anglo-Saxon scholarship in the period. This article will present the letters in this context, and examine the lasting friendship and collaboration of Fox and Bosworth against a backdrop of controversy, religious dispute, and patriotic fervour. In so doing, this article will also consider the legacy of Samuel Fox, a scholar now routinely marginalized in histories of the discipline, but who was held in high regard by at least some of his contemporaries.

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