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Abstracts 99.2

Albrecht Classen, “India, Persia, and Arabia in the Mind of a Late Fifteenth-Century German Author: Transcultural Experiences through the Literary Discourse; Antonius von Pforr and His Buch der Beispiele der Alten Weisen
The Global Middle Ages increasingly prove to be a fascinating challenge for current scholarship. The critical questions pertain to the issue of whether there was any kind of global exchange of ideas, otherwise “global” does not mean much. Only “transculturality” can serve as a solid benchmark for the existence of true “globalism” already in the premodern age. This article introduces the translations of ancient Indian literature into German by the fifteenth-century German scholar and writer Antonius von Pforr, who can be identified as a major forerunner of mostly nineteenth-century poets intensively engaged with Oriental poetry. Significant sections of the early parts of the Buch der Beispiele der Alten Weisen are here translated into English. 

John Colley, “Branding Barclay: The Printed Glosses and Envoys to Alexander Barclay’s Shyp of Folys (1509)”
This article offers the first sustained analysis of the printed glosses and envoys to Alexander Barclay’s Shyp of Folys. The Shyp’s glosses and envoys have been neglected in what little scholarship exists on Barclay. Revising scholarship on the nature of Barclay’s relationship with his printer, Richard Pynson, the article moves to consider how these paratexts branded Barclay as an authoritative translator in the Shyp. This main focus is set around questions which touch on early Tudor print culture more widely. What were the innovations and developing conventions underpinning the use of paratexts in this period? How also could paratexts be used to construct the auctoritas of a hitherto unknown translator such as Barclay? By suggesting some answers to these questions, the article hopes to shed further light on this dynamic moment in the history of English print. 

Sandro Jung, “Book Illustration and the Transnational Mediation of Robinson Crusoe in 1720”
The essay examines the reception of Robinson Crusoe on the basis of how the illustrations included in Amsterdam editions of two 1720 translations, the French and the Dutch ones, made sense of Daniel Defoe’s work. It considers how these illustrations, in turn, influenced the reception of the work in Germany where they were adopted and adapted in four illustrated editions of German translations of Robinson Crusoe in 1720. Offering the first ever contextualization of these series of illustrations, the essay charts a hitherto undocumented chapter in the continental reception of Robinson Crusoe, in the process arguing for the centrality of the illustrations in this transnational tale of the mediation of Defoe’s popular text.

Pat Rogers, “Annus Mirabilis (1722): Satiric Strategies, Allusions, and Authorship”
A pamphlet entitled Annus Mirabilis (1722) predicts a forthcoming universal sex change. From 1732 it appeared in the Miscellanies of the Scriblerus group, whose members included Jonathan Swift, Alexander Pope, John Gay, and John Arbuthnot. However, it has never been edited, and the only substantial discussion by Yvonne Noble dates back to 2001. This article seeks to augment Noble’s contextualization of Annus Mirabilis within the events of 1722 and 1723, notably the arrest of Bishop Francis Atterbury and developments among composers and singers at the London opera house. Extensive links with other Scriblerian satires are located in terms of common targets, shared narrative features, and parallels among rhetorical strategies. Changes between the early English and Irish editions of 1722 to 1723 and all subsequent printings are described for the first time. Formerly included among the works of Swift, the pamphlet is now generally assigned to Pope and Arbuthnot; a close review of the evidence confirms this attribution, but fuller analysis suggests that Arbuthnot may have played the larger role.

Melvyn New, “Laurence Sterne and William Falconer: Soldiers and Sailors”
Laurence Sterne and William Falconer, writing in the 1760s, shared an enthusiasm for the decade’s colonial expansionism, but also expressed concern for the soldiers and sailors who enabled those successes. This ambivalence is apparent in Falconer’s The Shipwreck (1762), and in Sterne’s Uncle Toby. Both authors modified their pride in commercialism and militarism with significant counterarguments against the greediness of those in power and the exploitation of the poorest among them, those who manned the ships and conducted the sieges, both with a very high cost in fatalities. Both had connection to the East India Company, Sterne through  friendship with Commodore William James, Falconer as a successful writer celebrating the merchant and military navy. Still, in the last volume of Tristram Shandy (1767), Sterne includes a diatribe against warfare; two years later, Falconer embarked for a colonial position in India, only to be lost at sea.