Gower Bibliography

The Books and Reading of Henry V and His Circle

Krochalis, Jeanne E.. "The Books and Reading of Henry V and His Circle." Chaucer Review 23 (1988), pp. 50-77.


Krochalis surveys what can be determined about book ownership and reading among the members of the royal family at the end of the fourteenth and beginning of the fifteenth centuries, then gives closer attention to the books owned and borrowed by Henry V, concluding that "in a circle of collectors, Henry V stands out as a reader of books" (p. 70). Henry is not known to have owned or read any of Gower's works, alas, and there is no known connection between Henry and any Gower MSS. Gower does figure, however, in Krochalis' account of the other members of Henry's family. She notes that two surviving MSS of CA are thought to have been owned by Henry's brothers Humphrey and Thomas (pp. 55, 57). She recounts the story of the commissioning of CA in her discussion of Richard II (p. 59), and of the change of dedication in her comments on Henry's father (p. 55). She also lists several of Gower's other works with reference to Henry IV. She mistakenly states that VC was dedicated to Henry IV to the same year as the rededication of CA. But she suggests that the Cinkante Ballades, which are also dedicated to Henry IV, might date from the period of the negotiations for Henry's remarriage in 1401 or later, and that the choice of French might thus be due to his prospective marriage to Joan of Navarre (p. 55 and note 31). [PN. Copyright The John Gower Society. JGN 8.2]

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Backgrounds and General Studies
Vox Clamantis
Cinkante Balades
Confessio Amantis

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