The History of the Kings of Britain

The History of the Kings of Britain : An edition and translation of the <I>De gestis Britonum</I> [<I>Historia Regum Brittannie</I>]

3.73 (5,124 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Translated by  , Edited by 

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This imaginative history of the Britons, written in the twelfth century, is the first work to recount the woes of Lear and the glittering career of Arthur. It rapidly became a bestseller in the British Isles and Francophone Europe, with over 200 manuscripts surviving. Here, an authoritative version of the text is presented with a facing translation, prepared especially for the volume. It also contains a full introduction and notes.

MICHAEL REEVE is Kennedy Professor of Latin Emeritus at the Faculty of Classics, University of Cambridge; Dr NEIL WRIGHT is a Senior Language Teaching Officer at the Faculty of History, University of Cambridge.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 392 pages
  • 156 x 234 x 30.48mm | 612.35g
  • The Boydell Press
  • Woodbridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1843834413
  • 9781843834410
  • 61,366

Review quote

This is surely going to be the all-purpose and long-awaited standard critical edition [...] which all medievalists will need to read and cite when dealing with what is one of the foundational texts of the Latin Middle Ages. MEDIUM AEVUM
This fine edition will serve to make Geoffrey's Latin much more accessible and no doubt spur further research. Neil Wright's translation is graceful and precise. [...] It is wonderful to have a reliable Latin edition and translation of this important work priced for the library of the individual scholar and student. JOURNAL OF MEDIEVAL LATIN
A fabulous British history - giants and all - deserves its former bestseller status. Fresh and engaging, and can be enjoyed purely as mythical history. FORTEAN TIMES
This new critical edition [...] is a major advance in scholarship and will undoubtedly become the standard text for the foreseeable future. SPECULUM
This is a handsome volume and a major contribution to twelfth-century British studies. It will provide a firm textual basis for the next generation of scholarly research on Geoffrey of Monmouth and on twelfth-century historiography. JOURNAL OF BRITISH STUDIES
The Historia Regum Britanniae is a text of major importance for any folklorist interested in medieval folklore, national epics, and the invention of tradition. [...] For students and scholars wanting to read Geoffrey in the original Latin, or even just looking for a good translation of the book, Michael Reeve's and Neil Wright's edition and translation [.] is the best available edition of this influential text. FABULA
Praise for the original hardback:
Reeve's new text, a collation of 11 of the most important manuscripts, is probably the best we've had since Geoffrey put his pen down, and it makes much previous scholarship redundant. [...] A definitive work for scholars. TOM SHIPPEY, LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS
The text itself is beautifully edited, and the translation is extremely close to the Latin original without being stilted: all the energy of Geoffrey's prose shines through. CHOICE
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About Geoffrey

Director of Research, Faculty of Classics, Cambridge
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Rating details

5,124 ratings
3.73 out of 5 stars
5 25% (1,268)
4 34% (1,760)
3 32% (1,623)
2 8% (406)
1 1% (67)
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