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De Abbatibus (of Mont Saint Michel) Rubrica Abreviata: Towards a New Edition

De Abbatibus (of Mont Saint Michel) Rubrica Abreviata: Towards a New Edition

Thomas N. Bisson (Harvard University)

Summary

De Abbatibus  was a well known Latin text used by Norman scholars which detailed the history of the abbots of Mont Saint Michel between 966 – 1445. The nature of the manuscipt along with the problems it poses were the topic of this paper.

The text appears to be the work of a scribe who worked alongside other scribes and in that end, their work ended up being combined together. However, this was not a complete compilation. There were 2 other annals found in other manuscripts. There were also breton annals added into one manuscript that had no bearing on Saint Michel or Norman identity.

De Abbatibus was repeatedly renewed until 1445, abbot by abbot in a string of abbatical biographies. It was not merely an updated text, it was a finished and polished text by the 15th cenury; a text of the “monastic now”.

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