Exempla are illustrative stories used by preachers to seize the attention of their congregations and to drive home a moral lesson. This book presents annotated translations from two collections of exempla, one Franciscan and one Dominican, put ...
together in the British Isles around 1275. The two collections used are amongst the earliest to survive from the British Isles. The 270 exempla translated cover a wide range of topics, both ecclesiastical and secular, and offer vivid insights into medieval life and attitudes in the broadest sense. An introduction discusses the place of preaching in the medieval church, the development of preaching aids and the exemplum genre, the main topics covered by the exempla, the dating of the two collections translated and the use which the compilers made of their material, and how far exempla can be relied upon as historical evidence.