Martianus Capella in the Late Middle Ages and Renaissance


In this book, Katie Reid argues that the fifth-century author Martianus Capella was a significant influence in the late Middle Ages and Renaissance. His poetic encyclopaedia, The Marriage of Philology and Mercury, was a source for writing on the liberal arts, allegory and classical mythology from 1300 to 1650. In fact, writers of this period had much more in common with Martianus Capella than they did with older ancients like Homer and Virgil. As such, we must reshape our understanding of late medieval and Renaissance encounters with the classical world by exploring their roots in Late Antiquity.

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Katie Reid, Ph.D. (2017), Warburg Institute, has taught at the University of Warwick and the Warburg Institute. She has a forthcoming scholarly edition of Hypnerotomachia, The Strife of Love in a Dreame with MHRA Tudor and Stuart Translations and several forthcoming articles on mythography. She is currently an independent scholar, and this is her first book.
Editorial Board:
Teodolinda Barolini, Lorenzo Da Ponte Professor of Italian, Columbia University
Cynthia Brown, Professor of French, University of California, Santa Barbara
Marina Brownlee, Robert Schirmer Professor of Spanish and Professor of Comparative Literature, Princeton University
Keith Busby, Douglas Kelly Professor of Medieval French, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Jason Harris, Director of the Centre for Neo-Latin Studies, University College Cork
Alastair Minnis, Professor of English, Yale University
Brian Murdoch, Professor of German, Stirling University
Jan Ziolkowski, Arthur Kingsley Porter Professor of Medieval Latin, Harvard University, and Director, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection
List of Illustrations

1 Martianus Capella and His Early Reception
 1 Introduction
 2 De nuptiis Philologiae et Mercurii
 3 The Earlier Reception of De nuptiis Philologiae et Mercurii
 4 The Question of the Later Reception

2 The Trecento Martianus: Harmonising Poetry and Learning
 1 Dante and the Legacy of Late Antiquity
 2 Myth and Dialectic in the Underworld
 3 Cosmic Education
 4 The Pageant of Philology: Petrarch and Boccaccio

3 The Middle English Martianus: Uneasy Myths and Marriages
 1 Chaucer’s House of Fame and the Co(s)mic Ascent
 2 Mirthful and Mythical Marriages: The Merchant’s Tale
 3 Lydgate’s Martianus

4 The Quattrocento Martianus: The Aesthetics of Knowledge
 1 Humanists and Patrons, Erudition and Iconography
 2 Alberti’s Allegories
 3 Exploring the Esoteric: The Hypnerotomachia Poliphili

5 Early Northern Humanism: Philosophical and Practical Allegories
 1 De nuptiis in Early Print (1499–1510)
 2 Philosophical Commentary: Johannes Dubravius
 3 Pedagogical Personifications: Richard Pace
 4 Professional Allegories: Geoffroy Tory

6 Martianus in the Cinquecento and Beyond: Vernacular Myth, Image and Performance
 1 Collecting the Gods: Martianus in Mythography
 2 Translations: Mercury and Philology in Italian
 3 Myth in Performance: Intermedi

7 Late Northern Humanism: The Triumph of Philology
 1 Later Sixteenth-Century Editions and Commentary
 2 The Cornucopia of Scholarship: Justus Lipsius and Gerardus Vossius
 3 Martianus in Early Modern England



Specialists and post-graduates studying English, French, Italian or Latin literature, intellectual history, art history, mythology, or classical reception studies will find this volume especially relevant.
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