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Title: Brautwerbungsepik : a re-evaluation of a problematic genre : studies of König Rother, Salman und Morolf, the Münchner Oswald and Grauer Rock
Author: Bowden, S. K.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2011
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The term Spielmannsepik, or minstrel epic, is largely no longer accepted for the group of Middle High German texts (König Rother, Herzog Ernst, the Münchner Oswald, Grauer Rock (or Orendel) and Salman and Morolf) for which it was conceived as a genre label. Instead, these texts are now primarily known as Brautwerbungsepik (bridal-quest epic) after the bridal-quest schema said to form a common structural framework. Yet the most important aspects of the label of Spielmannsepik remain: the idea that texts (with the exception of Herzog Ernst) form a genre and the idea that this genre occupies a transitional place in the literary history of the 12th century, between oral tales and fully ‘literary’ courtly romance. This thesis consists in an overview of the history of scholarship on Spielmannsepik and Brautwerbungsepik, followed by studies of König Rother, Salman and Morolf, the Münchner Oswald and Grauer Rock (Orendel). I question the productiveness of the bridal-quest schema, which is said to create symbolic meaning. I suggest that this symbolic meaning is often foisted upon the texts by scholars in their desire to fit the narratives to their expectations, and further, question whether the texts form a coherent group or genre at all. I do this by examining the origins of the genre of Spielmannsepik and the dating and transmission of the texts in question, as well as their particular motifs and concerns.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available