Show Summary Details

p. 1Introduction

Endings and Beginningslocked

  • Elaine Treharne

Abstract

The ‘Introduction’ explains that medieval literature in Britain and Ireland spans over a thousand years from the Fall of Rome in c.410 ce to the shifting tides of the Renaissance in the 15th and 16th centuries. This period is marked by conversion, conquest, crusade, and cultural innovation, all of which dramatically influenced the literature that emerged. The earliest British and Irish literature used the signs of the Ogham and Runic inscriptions and combined images, words, Germanic runes, and Christian subjects. There is a pervasive religious core that inspires much of medieval literature, which was one of the ways medieval people tried to understand and fathom their place in the world.

Access to the complete content on Very Short Introductions online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.