Anonymous: Sir Isumbras (2178 words)


Sir Isumbras is one of the shortest of the Middle English romances, running to just under eight hundred lines. It dates from the early fourteenth century. The earliest manuscript containing the text is a fragment of 104 lines in London, Gray’s Inn MS 20, fol. 228 (dated to around 1350), which roughly corresponds to a section of the text in the oldest, near-complete version of the romance in Cambridge, Gonville and Caius College MS 175, fols. 98r-106 (dated between 1425 and 1450). There are seven other manuscripts of this romance dating from c.1440 to c.1564 and five sixteenth-century prints (Boston, Harvard University Library [London: John Skot, c.1525 eight leaves]; Boston, Harvard University Library [London: I. Treveris,…

Citation: McKinstry, Jamie. "Sir Isumbras". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 29 May 2017 [, accessed 07 August 2022.]

35879 Sir Isumbras 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

Save this article

If you need to create a new bookshelf to save this article in, please make sure that you are logged in, then go to your 'Account' here

Leave Feedback

The Literary Encyclopedia is a living community of scholars. We welcome comments which will help us improve.