Ancrene Wisse and the conditions of confession
English Studies, 80, (3), . (doi:10.1080/00138389908599177).
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The article traces the evolution of the 'topos' of the 'conditions of confession' used in Part 5 (on confession) of the early thirteenth-century West Midlands rule for anchoresses, Ancrene Wisse, and discusses the implications of this evolution for the date and institutional context of Ancrene Wisse itself. It also looks more generally at the use of the theme as an '"inflatable topos" which could easily be collapsed into its minimal form of three or four hexameters for easy portability, and later expanded to any size required with the help of a well-stocked memory, a few notes, and whatever reference books happened to be available.'
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