Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 21.djvu/141

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worth, and Tennyson have all pressed Geoffrey's legends into their service.

The three Welsh chronicles known as the ‘Brut Tysilio,’ the ‘Brut y Brenhinoedd,’ and the ‘Brut Gruffyd ab Arthur’ have been clearly shown to be late translations or adaptations of Geoffrey's ‘Historia,’ made at a time when the word brut had, by frequent use as an appellative (both in Welsh and English) for the popular story with its continuations, become equivalent to chronicle. Editions of those various texts, or portions of them, have been given in the Myvyrian archæology and the Cambrian register. They must be distinguished from the ‘Brut y Saeson’ or ‘Brut y Tywysogion’ of Caradoc of Llancarvan, which is pure history, and has been printed in the Rolls Series and in the ‘Archæologia Cambrensis.’ Bale supplies the titles of several imaginary books supposed to have been written by Geoffrey. The treatise ‘Compendium Gaufredi de Corpore Christi et Sacramento Eucharistiæ,’ sometimes attributed to Geoffrey, of which two manuscripts are in the library of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, is stated by Wright to be written by Geoffrey of Auxerre.

The following is a view of the printed editions. A list of the manuscripts (including compilations and extracts from his works) is given by Hardy (Descriptive Cat. 1862–71, 3 vols.); see also Ward (Cat. of Romances, 1883), and Potthast (Wegweiser, 1862–8, 2 vols.). 1. ‘Britannie utriusque regum et principum origo et gesta insignia ab Galfrido Monemutensi ex antiquissimis Britannici sermonis monumentis in Latinum sermonem traducta et ab Ascensio cura et impendio magistri Junonis Cavelleti in lucem edita,’ Paris, 1508, 4to, 1st edition (this, as well as the 2nd edition, were much altered by the editor); ‘Britanniæ utriusque regum et principum origo et gesta … ab Ascensio rursus majore accuratione impressa,’ Paris, 1517, 4to, 2nd edition; reprinted, after collation with a manuscript, in H. Commelini ‘Rerum Britt. Script.,’ Heidelb. 1587, folio, pp. 1–92. The first critical edition is ‘Galfredi Monumetensis Historia Britonum, nunc primum in Anglia novem codd. MSS. collatis ed. J. A. Giles,’ London, 1844, 8vo (also as a publication of the Caxton Soc.). The latest is ‘Gottfried's von Monmouth Historia regum Britanniæ und Brut Tysylio, altwälsche Chronik in deutscher Uebersetzung, herausgegeben von San Marte [A. Schulz],’ Halle, 1854, 8vo. ‘The British History, translated into English from the Latin of Jeffrey of Monmouth, with a large preface concerning the authority of the history, by Aaron Thompson,’ London, 1718, 8vo; a new edition, revised and corrected, by J. A. Giles, London, 1842, 8vo; again without the preface, in ‘Six Old English Chronicles’ (Bohn's Ser. 1848, small 8vo). ‘Legendary Tales of the Ancient Britons, by L. J. Menzies,’ London, 1864, small 8vo, is mainly drawn from Geoffrey. 2. ‘Prophetia Anglicana Merlini Ambrosii Britanni, ex incubo olim (ut hominibus fama est) ante annos mille ducentos circiter in Anglia nati, Vaticinia et prædictiones, a Galfredo Monumet. Latine conversæ, una cum septem libris explanationum Alani de Insulis,’ Francofurti, 1603, small 8vo; again as ‘Prophetia Anglicana et Romana, hoc est Merlini Ambrosii Britanni,’ Francof. 1608, 8vo, and also in 1649, 8vo. 3. ‘Gaufridi Arthuri Monemuthensis Archidiaconi postea vero episcopi Asaphensis, de vita et vaticiniis Merlini Calidonii carmen heroicum,’ Roxburghe Club, 1830, 4to, edited by W. H. Black; ‘Galfridi de Monemuta Vita Merlini: vie de Merlin attribuée à Geoffrey de Monmouth, suivie des prophéties de ce barde, tirées du ive livre de l'Histoire des Bretons, publiées d'après les MSS. de Londres, par Francisque Michel et Thomas Wright,’ Paris, 1837, 8vo. The ‘Vita Merlini’ and ‘Vaticinia’ are also in A. F. Gfroerer's ‘Prophetæ veteres pseudepigraphi,’ Stuttgart, 1840, 8vo, and in ‘Die Sagen von Merlin von San Marte [A. Schulz],’ Halle, 1853, 8vo.

[Much information has been collected by Mr. Ward in his valuable Catalogue of Romances in the MSS. Department of the British Museum, 1883; a biography is in Wright's Biographia Britannica Literaria Anglo-Norman period, 1846, pp. 143–50; the notices by Bale, Leland, Pits, and Tanner are full of fables. See also Haddan and Stubbs's Councils, 1859, i. 360–1; Wright's Essays on Archæological Subjects, 1861, i. 202–226; Legends of pre-Roman Britain, in Dublin Univ. Mag. April 1876, an excellent sketch of the literary influence of Geoffrey, by T. Gilray; Hardy's Catalogue of Materials relating to History, 1862–71, 3 vols.; T. Warton's Hist. of English Poetry (Hazlitt), 1871, 4 vols.; Encyclop. Brit. xx. s.v. ‘Romance;’ Skene's Four Ancient Books of Wales, i. 22–6; Romania, 1883, pp. 367–76; G. Heeger's Die Trojanersage der Britten, 1889, 8vo; N. Mitth. a. d. Gebiet Hist.-Antiq. Forsch., Halle, 1862, pp. 49–75; Dunlop's Hist. of Fiction (Wilson), 1888, 2 vols.; Der Münchener Brut, herausg. von Hoffmann u. Vollmöller, Halle, 1877, 8vo; Acta SS. Boll. 21 Oct. ix. 94–8; Archæological Journal, xv. 1858, pp. 299–312; a Letter from Bishop Lloyd in N. Owen's British Remains, 1777; L. A. Lemoyne de la Borderie, Études historiques bretonnes, 1883; Jahrb. für roman. u. englische Lit. bd. v. and ix.; P. Paris's Mémoire sur l'ancienne chronique dite de Nennius et sur l'histoire des Bretons de Monmouth, in Comptes Roy. Acad. des Inscr. 1865, vol. i.]

H. R. T.