The Scottish Romance Tradition c. 1375–c. 1550

Nation, Chivalry and Knighthood


This is the first ever comprehensive study of the Scottish medieval romances. The book reinstates the status of the Scottish romances. It offers a new definition of the Scottish romance tradition, bringing together texts which have not generally been considered part of the same corpus. It argues that Barbour’s Bruce ( c.1375) established the rhetorical devices and literary traits which were going to be typical of the later Scottish romances. It also examines the extent to which the translation of the four Arthurian and Alexander romances from French originals follows Barbour’s precepts. These texts contributed to the founding both of the vernacular tradition and of the fabrication of national identity through dialogic interchanges between the narratives and the socio-historical circumstances of Scotland.
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Biographical Note

Sergi Mainer is a research fellow at the University of Edinburgh (Hispanic Studies). Between 2005 and 2008 he was a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Stirling (English Studies). His research interests and publications range from medieval European epic and romance to comparative literature and translation and vernacular studies.

Review Quotes

”[…] this revisionist approach is both refreshing and compelling. […] Mainer’s study is certainly an accomplished examination of a particularly enduring theme in medieval Scottish romance, and deserves being addressed in future romance criticism.” – Louise Hutcheson, University of Glasgow, in: Scottish Literary Review 3.2, February 2012, pp. 191-3

Table of contents

Preface: Contextualising Medieval Scottish Romance
Introduction: Late Medieval Scotland and the Romance Tradition
National Constructs in the Medieval Scottish Romances
The Hero’s Progression
The Historical Romances
The Arthurian Romances
The Alexander and Charlemagne Romances
Conclusion: The Scottish Romance Tradition


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