Instructions for Transcription exercise
ENGL 229 – Fall 2015
- Be patient; you are encountering medieval language and manuscript (handwritten) witnesses at least 600 years old.
- Choose one of the texts below, written in some of the medieval languages of the British Isles. These texts have come up in the initial chapters of Lerer’s book.
- Anglo-Saxon – Beowulf (British Library, 11th c ms)
- Anglo-Norman – Marie of France’s Fable “De leone agreoto” (British Library, 1260s ms)
- Anglo-Norman – Marie of France’s Yonec (BnF, 14th c ms)
- Early Middle English – Peterborough Chronicle (14th)
- Middle English – The Owl and the Nightingale
- Middle English – John of Trevisa’s Polychronicon (British Library)
- Middle English – Prologue to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (Ellesmere ms, 15th c ms)
- Look at the overall text. Where does it seem to begin? Is the layout of the text meaningful?
- What paratextual features do you notice? Initials? Scribbling? Illumination? Different inks?
- Try to make as exhaustive a list as you can of what material aspects of the text make it interesting/difficult.
- Search to see if you can find an electronic edition/transcription of the text
- Try to make a transcription of the manuscript in your own handwriting (using the edition if possible), taking note of difficulties along the way. 15-20 lines is enough.
- After class, please type up that transcription.
- Look up the meaning of the word “remediation” in a normal dictionary. See if you can discover how the word is used in the context of media studies and/or information sciences.
- Prepare next class a handwritten copy of the text to show the class. Prepare an electronic version. Also, in a page or so of notes, please write up a reflection on what the shortcomings of both of your transcriptions were. Please comment therein on the process of remediation. Please include in your reflection a bibliography of any materials, electronic or print you have used.
- A final, collated version of this exercise will be your first wordpress page.