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Glenn Cahilly-Bretzin
Warren, VT / Oxford, UK
DPhil Candidate in Anglo-Latin Literature and Maple Sugarer
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If I might add my two cents concerning the marginalia on fol. 76r, it seems to be a depiction of a devil swapping a human child with a changeling. The creature in the crib looks more similar to the demons than to the human child being abducted. Such an interpretation could be supported by the thematic continuation of supernatural influences in infants. The demonic presence in Merlin's conception is also an instance in which the supernatural is introduced to the human realm just as the substitute of changeling for child exchanges human for inhuman. Merlin and, presumably, the changeling would then grow to be channels of the extraordinary or 'other' in the mundane world. The illustrator of this book full of fantastical stories, may then be nudging the reader in the marginalia to recognize this theme in the Merlin story...Just a thought. On a side note, I really love this blog. Thank you so very much for providing these manuscript gobbets from the British Library!
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Apr 28, 2015