By Ilknur Güzel
Master’s Thesis, Bilkent University, 2005
Abstract: At the National Library of Wales a manuscript (MS 21608) has been found recently which contains a text that is identical with what John S. Davies published in 1856 under the title of the Davies Chronicle and Davies’s Chronicle. Davies made use of the text that he had found in Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Lyell 34, which was damaged for the reigns Richard II and Henry IV. An English Chronicle 1377- 1461, which is based on the recently found text, covers the reigns of Richard II, Henry IV, Henry V and Henry VI and for the reigns of Richard II and Henry IV the text has not been damaged. As a crucial source for the vernacular history writing and the Brut tradition in the late Middle Ages, the Chronicle contains two different parts: the first part of the Chronicle, that is 1377-1422/37 version was written by a Lancastrian compiler and the second part, that is the Continuation 1440-1461, was written by a Yorkist author. Undoubtedly, they had contrasting approaches to the politics of the late medieval period and the Chronicle offers its readers an opportunity to explore Lancastrian and Yorkist history writing. This dissertation discusses both contrasting approaches to the politics of the period in the Chronicle. While doing this, history writing in the late medieval period, and especially Lancastrian and Yorkist history writing has been analyzed. Broadly, the general structure of the Chronicle has been examined. In each subsequent chapter, the Lancastrian and Yorkist perspectives about the politics and how these viewpoints were reflected in their writings have been explored. Accordingly, this dissertation investigates the Chronicle, which offers both an insight to the politics and history writing of the late medieval period.