Political Poems and Songs Relating to English History, Composed during the Period from the Accession of Edward III to that of Richard III 2 Volume Set
Veering between unprecedented military successes and the violent downfalls of kings, the period between the accession of Edward III and the death of Edward IV was a rich subject for contemporary political writers. This two-volume collection of poems and tracts was first compiled by Thomas Wright as part of the Rolls Series, commissioned to edit and publish publicly owned manuscript texts. First published in 1859 and including thirty-five pieces in English, French and Latin, Volume 1 covers the reigns of Edward III and Richard II. It features poems by Gower and Deschamps, a commentary on a fictional prophecy, and the much-contested Speght text of Chaucer's apocryphal 'Complaint of the Ploughman'. Volume 2, from 1861, covers the turbulent years between Henry IV and Edward IV, and includes forty-four pieces in English, French and Latin. The work is a fascinating example of Victorian scholarship and its expectations of readers.