Wace: Roman de Brut [A History of the British]

(2623 words)
  • Judith Weiss (University of Cambridge)

The twelfth-century Norman poet Wace occupies an important place in medieval historiography and had an incalculable influence on medieval romance. By translating Geoffrey of Monmouth’s “history” of Britain, the Historia Regum Britanniae, into his French verse Roman de Brut, he instantly allowed the layman as well as the clerk access to the “information” that Britain, settled by Brutus the grandson of Aeneas, had a long and proud history whose climax was the reign of king Arthur. Wace’s work led in turn to the thirteenth-century English translation by La3amon and to numerous other Anglo-Norman and English “Bruts”; it also provided the starting-point and inspiration for the flowering …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are not a subscriber, please click here to read about membership. All our articles have been written recently by experts in their field, more than 95% of them university professors.

Weiss, Judith. "Roman de Brut". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 30 March 2001
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=2345, accessed 01 July 2015.]

Related Groups

  1. Arthurian Literature