Syon's textual community

Alexandra da Costa

in Reforming Printing

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199653560
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191742026 | DOI:

Series: Oxford English Monographs

Syon's textual community

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This chapter examines how Bonde, Fewterer, and Whitford came to Syon and the impact their education at Cambridge had. This chapter contends that the emerging popularity of humanism at the university left little mark on these men and that the definitions of humanism offered by Jonathan Woolfson, Lucy Wooding, and Maria Dowling do not fully account for their spirituality and intellectual inclinations. Cambridge's most significant contribution to moulding their careers was the establishment, at least in embryonic form, of many of the relationships that would produce the Syon books. In contrast, Syon was a more influential force and could usefully be seen, to use Brian Stock's term, as a ‘textual community’. The three Bridgettine authors had to negotiate with the agreed meaning of their vocation established by Syon's textual community to establish their own distinctive voices and to project a new image of the Abbey in the sixteenth century.

Keywords: textual community; Cambridge; university; humanism; vocation; Syon; monasticism

Chapter.  5078 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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