Book

“Imperios and Margarona:
The Rhymed Version”
(forthcoming with the Cultural Foundation of the National Bank of Greece [MIET]).

This edition recalibrates criticism of early modern Greek literature in a fiercely comparative context. Imperios is a sixteenth-century romance that was wildly popular until the nineteenth. It derives from a French original of the twelfth century with over three hundred versions in all European languages, including Hebrew and Armenian. A surprisingly large number of analogues, which range from Gilgamesh to Homer to Shahnameh to vernacular poetry in English, French, Italian, Spanish, German, Latin, Farsi and Arabic, among other languages, help to uncover intricate routes of cultural mobility in the Mediterranean.

Aside from comparative literary criticism, a key methodological theme in the book is its emphasis on a systematic approach to fundamental questions of textual criticism, emandation, edition, dating. Here a long-lost source is discovered. An eighty-year-old debate regarding precedence of manuscripts is brought to a close. A proposal is offered for a codicological description of manuscripts and prints, with an eye towards challenging current practices in Greek paleography. Rigorously marshalling sources from a variety of disciplines, the book's Commentary should rank among the most comprehensive found in any edition of a work of vernacular literature.