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The name found attached in English MSS of the 12th and 13th cents to Latin poems of a satirical and profane kind, the most famous of these being the so‐called ‘Apocalypse of Golias’, of uncertain authorship. According to F. J. E. Raby (A History of Secular Latin Poetry in the Middle Ages), the conception of Golias as ‘Bishop’ or ‘Arch‐poet’ is a myth. The ‘Goliards’ are, it seems, to be linked with Golias, Goliath of Gath, the symbol of lawlessness and of evil, though the original derivation may have been from ‘gula’, on account of their gluttony. The famous ‘Goliardic’ measure or ‘Vagantenstrophe’ appears to have passed from secular into religious verse. See Carmina Burana.

Subjects: Literature.

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