Thursday 14 July 2011


‘My country Penne would alwaies shun the City’: Regional manuscript transmission, 1500-1700 @ Society for Renaissance Studies 2012, 9-11th July, University of Manchester.

While the transmission of manuscript texts in early modern England has been understood as a phenomenon based in metropolitan centres, a number of recent studies have now shown that hand-copied texts were an important means of communicating literary culture all over the British Isles. As suggested by the title’s quotation from Nicholas Oldisworth, regional manuscripts can show a lively culture of composition and circulation that operated quite independently of the cities, though important exchanges were maintained between urban and non-urban environments.

This panel will present papers that explore any aspect of the role and significance of manuscript dissemination outside of urban centres in the early modern British Isles. Topics for proposals may include (but are certainly not limited to): the accumulation, collection, and anthologising of hand-copied texts; the importance of social groupings based around families, friends, and other institutions; the geographical spread of copied texts; the literary forms of texts available to provincial readers and copyists; the relationship between writing, place, and dissemination. 

Please send short abstracts or informal enquiries to Joel Swann at j.swann [at] by the 2nd of September 2011 (ahead of the general SRS deadline). For more information on the 2012 SRS conference, go to .

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