TETRA - Texts and Transmission

TETRA - Texts and Transmission

Mediaeval Latin Texts and their Transmission (Te.Tra)
Research in collaboration with SISMEL

Launched in 2000, this joint collaboration with SISMEL aims to carry out a survey of the transmission of medieval Latin works and publish them thereafter in a series of volumes, following the model of L. D. Reynolds' masterpiece, Texts and Transmission. Thus the objects of study for each work are: the manuscripts that hold it, the first print editions, the different textual stages (when attested), citations and reuse, and proof of its circulation in different times and places. The first objectives of the research on the history of transmission are the reconstruction and critical edition of the text of each work, which are inseparably linked to the investigation on its textual tradition; the field of study is of a strictly textual nature, while those aspects relating to the historical nature, or related to the content or literary charater will remain peripheral if not closely tied in to the principal object of the research.

The practical objective is to compile a repertory, in several volumes, containing concise yet comprehensive data on a certain number of works of medieval culture (at least the most important ones). These essential details will outline the transmission of the text, its editorial situation, and the problems faced in reconstruction.

This project responds to different scientific necessities:
allows the selection of works most urgently requiring in-depth study on the history of the textual tradition and on the preparation of a critical edition
  • provides a critical repertory of textual studies on works of medieval Latin literature, and on the methods that were used to handle them
  • traces an outline of the forms and modes of transmission of texts over the course of the Middle Ages and identifies variables and constants of such transmission
  • proposes a philological methodology for the study of medieval texts, and addresses the reconstructive procedures through a strictly scientific path
  • offers a picture of the fortune of Latin literary works in the Middle Ages and their influence over the course of the following centuries.

This research has received funding from the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (Italian National Research Council) in 2000, and from the Italian Ministry for Education, University and Research in 2003, 2005 and 2008.

contacts: Paolo Chiesa, Lucia Castaldi