Encyclopedia of the Medieval Chronicle

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Edited by:  Edited by Graeme Dunphy and Cristian Bratu

The Encyclopedia of the Medieval Chronicle brings together the latest research in chronicle studies from a variety of disciplines and scholarly traditions. Chronicles are the history books written and read in educated circles throughout Europe and the Middle East in the Middle Ages. For the modern reader, they are important as sources for the history they tell, but equally they open windows on the preoccupations and self-perceptions of those who tell it. Interest in chronicles has grown steadily in recent decades, and the foundation of a Medieval Chronicle Society in 1999 is indicative of this. Indeed, in many ways the Encyclopedia has been inspired by the emergence of this Society as a focus of the interdisciplinary chronicle community.

The online version was updated in 2014 and in 2016.

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(426 words)

Author(s): Arnold, Jonathan
ca 250-325 ad. Anatolia. Christian author and apologist. Under the auspices of emperor Diocletian, Lactantius taught rhetoric at Nicomedia in Bithynia, where he may have converted to Christianity. During the Great Persecution (303-13), his status as a Christian eventually disqualified him from his post. Perhaps as early as 310 he found favour at the court of Constantine the Great, serving in Gaul as tutor to his son, Crispus. Lactantius wrote several apologetic treatises, the most famous being the Divinae institutiones (Divine institutes), which was dedicated to Constantine. …
Date: 2016-10-17

Ladam, Nicaise

(154 words)

Author(s): Doudet, Estelle
1465-1547. Northern France, Born in Béthune, died Arras. Herald, then King of Arms of the Hapsburg Emperors. Nicaise Ladam composed a French verse Chronique of the Burgundian court during the Valois-Austrian reign, between 1488 and 1546. The text is known in two versions: the longer version (Arras, BM, 1082; Brussels, KBR, 14864-5; Brussels, KBR, 21687-91) relates the events in Burgundy between 1488 and 1545; the briefer one (Arras, BM 682, Kortrijk, StB, GV cod. 89) focuses on the period 1492-1515, continuing to 1537…
Date: 2016-10-17

La fi del comte d'Urgell

(282 words)

Author(s): Garrido Valls, David
(The End of the Count of Urgell) ca 1469. Catalonia (Iberia). An anonymous Catalan-language chronicle possibly written by an opponent of King Joan II of Catalonia and Aragon during the Catalan Civil War (1462-72). La fi del comte d'Urgell, written in dialogue, supports the claim of Count Jaume II of Urgell (d. 1433), called "el Dissortat" (the Unhappy), to the Catalan-Aragonese throne; a throne won by his adversary Ferran I of Antequera (King Joan II's father) after the Compromise of Caspe (1412).The earliest known manuscript, Paris, BnF, espagnol 554, is incomplete and date…
Date: 2016-10-17

La Geste des ducs Phelippe et Jehan de Bourgogne

(452 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Philip E.
15th century. France. Anonymous verse chronicle in Middle French with reconstructed Old French strongly marked by Picard dialect; the anonymous author was clearly attached to the Burgundian court, possibly through the house of Croy. Precise dating is difficult but the work was written after 1411 and before 1445. It exists in a sole 15th-century manuscript (Paris, Bibliothèque de l'Institut de France, ms. 303, fol. 174ff), copied by Martin de Cottignies in 1445 in the house of Antoine de Croy, which appears to be complete. The Geste is a tendentiously polemical account of the con…
Date: 2016-10-17

La guerra dell'Aquila

(248 words)

Author(s): Terenzi, Pierluigi
ca 1440-1450. Italy. Anonymous vernacular verse chronicle on the siege of L'Aquila, in central Italy in 1423/24. This poem narrates the final step of the first war between Alfonso the Magnanimous and Joan II of Naples. Braccio da Montone, a soldier of fortune who led a part of the Aragonese army, besieged L'Aquila from May 1423 to June 1424. The resistance of the town enabled the arrival of additional support to the Angevin army, that won the last battle, in which Braccio da Montone d…
Date: 2016-10-17

La Marche, Olivier de

(628 words)

Author(s): Emerson, Catherine
1426?-1502. Low Countries. La Marche spent his life in the service of the household of the Dukes of Burgundy rising to grand et premier maître d'hôtel (grand butler) to Charles le Hardi. Author of his Mémoires, the allegorical poem Le Chevalier Délibéré (The Resolute Knight) and a number of occasional pieces and texts on court ceremonial, all in French. Although born in France, he lived and worked mainly in the Burgundian Netherlands. His Mémoires recount his experience in the service of Philip the Good, his son the count of Charolais (later Charles le Hardi), and ul…
Date: 2016-10-17

Lambert de Waterlos

(226 words)

Author(s): Stein, Robert
[Waterloos] 1108 - ca 1170/71. Low Countries. Author of the Annales Cameracensis. Lambert was born in Néchin (Hainaut) in 1108. In 1119 he became regular canon in the Augustinian monastery of St. Aubert in Cambrai, later priest in Wancourt and Bertry. He wrote the Annales Cameracensis in the years 1152-70. The Annales start as a strictly chronological account focussed mainly on events in Cambrai in the years 1099-1150. From 1150 onwards, the narration becomes more expansive and the geographical scope widens to that of a world chronicle. Year by …
Date: 2016-10-17

Lambert of Ardres

(243 words)

Author(s): Rech, Régis
[Lambertus Ardensis] fl. 1200. France. A priest at the château of Ardres, he incurred the wrath of Baudoin II, Count of Guînes at the wedding of the latter's son, Arnould, Lord of Ardres, and to make amends he wrote a panegyric Historia comitum Ghisnensium, dedicated to Arnould, tracing the lineage of the two nobles from a supposed Sifroi (10th century) to the year 1203. The work is both literary (use of Horace, Ovid, chansons de geste ,chansons de croisade) and historical, (chronicles, oral traditions, personal witnesses). Despite its faults and lack of impartiality, i…
Date: 2016-10-17

Lambert of Hersfeld

(508 words)

Author(s): Loud, Graham A.
[Lampert] 11th century. Germany. Benedictine author of the most detailed contemporary account of the political crisis in Germany in the 1070s. We know only little about his life: he became a monk at Hersfeld in March 1058, was ordained priest in September of that year, soon afterwards went on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, and became Abbot of Hasungen, near Kassel ca 1081. He died before 1085. He also wrote a Life of Archbishop Lull, the founder of Hersfeld, and a separate brief account of that foundation.His principal historical work was the Latin Annales, which commencing with a set of b…
Date: 2016-10-17

Lambert of St. Omer

(71 words)

Author(s): Stein, Robert
[of St. Bertin] fl. 1061. Northern France. Benedictine from the abbey of St. Bertin in St. Omer (St. Omaars). Author of a Latin encyclopedia entitled Liber Floridus. The autograph manuscript, Ghent, UB, ms. 92, contains several historical texts, including Chronicon de Gestis Normannorum in Francia and Flandria generosa.Stein, RobertBibliography Text: A. Derolez, LAMBERTI S. AUDOMARI CANONICI, Liber Floridus codex autographus bibliothecae universitatis Gandavensis, 1968. Narrative Sources G002, L002.
Date: 2016-10-17

Lanckmann de Valckenstein, Nicolaus

(207 words)

Author(s): Schmid, Barbara
[Niklas Lankmann von Falkenstein] fl. 1446-89. Germany. Ordination in Passau, Bavaria, in 1446. Mandatarius specialis in 1451, when Frederick III of Habsburg sent him and Jacob Motz of Kempten to his bride Leonor in Portugal. Lanckmann attended the wedding and Frederick's coronation in Rome and joined the couple on their journey to King Alphonso I in Naples. He was Leonor's chaplain from 1464. In his prose chronicle Desponsatio serenissimi domini Imperatoris Fridericii tercii, Lanckmann tells of his mission to Portugal and Italy and of events concerning the imperial…
Date: 2016-10-17

Landshuter Ratschronik

(282 words)

Author(s): Paulus, Christof
(Chronicle of the Landshut Town Council) 1439-1504. Germany (Bavaria). Council chronicle in early New High German, written by three town clerks, Paulus Mornauer, his son Alexander Mornauer, and Hans Vetter. After his time as town-clerk, Paulus became Spitalmeister (master of the hospital), Alexander presumably Bergmeister (inspector of mines). Paulus Mornauer deals with the time until 1464, Alexander Mornauer from then till 1488, and Vetter from 1490 onwards. At this time, Landshut was the …
Date: 2016-10-17

Landucci, Luca

(227 words)

Author(s): Lang, Heinrich
1437-1516. Italy. Florentine apothecary, writer of a diary. Born to a modest family, he was able thanks to a considerable dowry to buy a bottega di spezeria (a shop for medicines, herbs, and spices) in 1466. From 1450 to 1516 he wrote a diary that was continued by an anonymous till 1542, in volgare (Italian). Becoming more detailed in the early 1470s his Diario (Diary) is a unique source covering the late years of Lorenzo il Magnifico, the DominicanSavonarola's rule in Florence (Landucci witnessed his execution), the French descent into Italy, and the Repub…
Date: 2016-10-17

Landulf of Milan

(303 words)

Author(s): Bratu, Cristian
[Landulfus Senior] late 11th century. Northern Italy. Landulf of Milan, also known as Landulfus Senior, should not be confused with Landulf of San Paolo (or Landulfus Junior). Politically speaking, Landulf of Milan was quite the opposite of Landulf Junior, since he was a married priest who argued vehemently against the Gregorian Reform and the local Patarenes, a religious group opposed to marriage and simony among the clergy to which the younger Landulf had sympathies.Landulf of Milan authored a four-part history of Milan, known as Mediolanensis historiae libri quatuor. His work f…
Date: 2016-10-17

Landulf of San Paolo

(195 words)

Author(s): Bratu, Cristian
[Landulfus Iunior] 1077-1136/7. Northern Italy. Landulf was the French-educated nephew of the Milanese priest Liprand, who erected the church of St. Paul, hence his designation Landulf "of St. Paul". He was also called Landulfus Junior to distinguish him from Landulf of Milan, known as Landulfus Senior. Landulf of St. Paul was the author of the Historia Mediolanensis, which he wrote between the late 11th and the early 12th century. He devoted the first part of the Historia to the memory of his uncle Liprand, who had been a member of the Pataria (a religious group which …
Date: 2016-10-17

Landulf Sagax

(231 words)

Author(s): Baran-Kozłowski, Wojciech
10th-11th century. Italy. Author of a Latin continuation of Paul the Deacon's Historia Romana, written in prose ca 1000 in Southern Italy. Landulf was probably a layman, possibly employed on a court in Naples or Benevento. His chronicle in 26 chapters takes Paul's Historia forward to 813. The other main sources of that chronicle were the Historiae of Orosius, the Historia tripartita of Epiphanius scholasticus, and the Chronographia tripartita of Theophanes Confessor paraphrased in Latin by Anastasius Bibliothecarius. The Chronicle also contains two lists: Byzant…
Date: 2016-10-17

Lang, Andreas

(226 words)

Author(s): Nichilo, Angelo
[Andreas abbas Montis S. Michaelis] ca 1440-1504. Germany. Abbot of the monastery of Michelsberg in Bamberg. Author of a prose chronicle of the bishops of Bamberg. Elected abbot in 1483, Andreas showed a great capacity for administration and reorganized the life of the abbey: a week after his election, an inventory of the income, the estate and the personnel had already been made. But the renewal concerned above all spiritual and cultural life: the abbey's library was expanded and the writing of manuscripts and bookbinding took place in the monastery. Abbot Andreas died on 23rd October 1…
Date: 2016-10-17

Lange, Dietrich

(160 words)

Author(s): Pfeil, Brigitte
fl. ca 1350. Germany. Author of the lost verse Saxonia which is known only from extracts in Dietrich Engelhus. Born at Einbeck, he became a canon and probably teacher there and at Goslar (St. Simon and Jude). He may be the Goslar canon Dietrich Lang (attested 1309) or Dietrich of Einbeck (1376-83). Lange's chronicle survives as 352 leonine hexameters in Engelhus' Origo Saxonum et terre Saxonie commendatio, which were later named Saxonia, and about 54 verses scattered in Engelhus' world chronicle. It was used by Engelhus mainly for its account of the early Saxons wh…
Date: 2016-10-17

Lange, Hinrik

(262 words)

Author(s): Droste, Heiko
ca 1395-1467. Germany. Councillor and mayor of Lüneburg, and leaseholder at the local salt works. Father of Gottfried Lange.Hinrik Lange wrote the first chronicle on the Prälatenkrieg, a major crisis in the town's history caused by huge municipal debts. The city council tried unsuccessfully to resolve it by demanding revenue from the owners of the salt works, mostly clerics and monasteries of Northern Germany. The council was replaced in 1454, but was eventually re-installed in 1456.Lange's Low German chronicle, about 50 quartos in the surviving autograph (Lüneburg, St…
Date: 2016-10-17

Langenbeck, Herman

(217 words)

Author(s): Kümper, Hiram
1452-1517. Germany. Mayor of Hamburg. Wrote a Low German report on the Hamburg insurrection of 1483 (Hamburg, Stiftung Hanseatisches Wirtschaftsarchiv, Safebestand Commerzbibliothek, S/666; two other manuscripts lost). Though at first accused himself of involvement in the riots, Langenbeck played a crucial role in abating them. He also formulated the short, collective oath which symbolically ended the rising and remained in use as citizen's oath until 1844 (officially abolished 1918).…
Date: 2016-10-17
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