Jean Bodel - Les Congés

Materials, Procedures, and Conditions

Editors Lynn Ramey and Rachel Sapp.

Jean Bodel likely wrote Les Congés in 1202, when he contracted leprosy and withdrew from all he knew in Arras. His Congés is the first of a genre that would be copied by others, including Baude Fastoul, Adam de la Hall, Rutebeuf, and François Villon. These congés, or poems of leave-taking, are a combination of will and testament and farewell.

We are compiling our edition from the manuscripts identified by ARLIMA as the extant mss of Jean Bodel’s Les Congés. They are:

This project is still under construction; we describe the status of each area below. Because the edition is digital, does not have a publisher, and can quickly be modified, we see no reason to wait for a fully perfected version to put the project online. We hope this will be useful as soon as possible.

Brussels 9411-26 (note correction of shelf mark from Arlima site) has not yet been procured due to difficulty obtaining the .pdf file. This manuscript will be added as that obstacle is overcome.

Arsenal 3113, supposedly a copy of BnF fr. 375, is in fact somewhat different, as we describe below. However, it does appear to be derivative and incomplete, therefore it was not as pressing as the other manuscripts. This manuscript will be added later.

Arsenal 3114 is one of our base manuscripts and ready for collation with other manuscripts or the Raynaud edition through the JuxtaEditions site. This manuscript was transcribed by Rachel Sapp. The transcription has been checked a first time by Lynn Ramey, but there remain some words that are unclear to us.

Arsenal 3142, transcribed by Lynn Ramey, is another of our base manuscripts and it, too, is ready for collation. This manuscript needs to be checked by a second person.

BnF fr. 375, transcribed by Rachel Sapp, is a base manuscript ready for collation. This transcription has been verified by Lynn Ramey, but parts of it are still unclear.

BnF fr. 837 is in the process of transcription. It appears to be incomplete and the bibliographic reference at Arlima appears to be incorrect. The images may be consulted at the JuxtaEditions site.

BnF fr. 25566 is in the process of transcription and may be consulted at the JuxtaEditions site.

Moreau 1727 is also in the process of transcription and can be consulted on the JuxtaEditions site. While it is a more modern copy of a Turin manuscript, we contacted the library in Turin and were informed by the librarian that the medieval manuscript L.V.32 was lost in a fire in 1904. We do not have a way to verify that the shelf mark, cited in Arlima and Raynaud, is correct, but assuming that it is, this copy is the only remaining trace of the Turin manuscript.

The English translation of Les congés is based on the 1880 Reynaud edition and the Brasseur 1998 modern French translation.