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The Geraldines and the culture of the wider world

Byrne, A. (2016) The Geraldines and the culture of the wider world. In: Crooks, P. and Duffy, S. (eds.) The Geraldines and medieval Ireland: the making of a myth. Trinity Medieval Ireland Series (1). Four Courts Press, Dublin, pp. 278-292. ISBN 9781846825712

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Abstract/Summary

Much of what has been written about the Geraldines' complex familial identity focuses on their ambiguous position in relation to Irish and English politics, society and culture. However, the family also imagined their history and contemporary noble identity in terms that were more broadly European in scope. The most eye-catching manifestation of this is their connection to contemporary Florence, but they were also very interested in extending this connection to Italy into the past and mapping a Romano-Trojan origin myth for themselves of the sort cultivated by nations and dynasties across medieval Europe. The breadth of the geographical context through which the Geraldines traced their history is mirrored in the far-reaching scope of their cultural interests at the end of the Middle Ages. The surviving evidence of their wider interests, particularly their reading interests, in this period associates them with a thriving court culture shared across large areas of north-west Europe. The similarity between the reading tastes of the Geraldines and those of other nobles in the Burgundian sphere of influence suggests that the trends set in motion by the cultural efflorescence of that court at the end of the Middle Ages spread further west than we have previously assumed.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies (GCMS)
Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Literature and Languages > English Literature
ID Code:68067
Publisher:Four Courts Press

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