The Earliest States of Eastern Europe
DG-2013, 439-463

Little forms of big history in medieval manuscripts (some books from South Germany of the ninth–eleventh centuries)

A. I. Sidorov

The paper deals with the content of some South German manuscripts
of the ninth–eleventh centuries and studies the role and the signifi cance of
the so-called minor forms of historical narrative in the historical culture
of the Carolingian society. Not only extended and sophisticated authors’
works but also small texts with simple form and trivial content played an
important role in the formation and the translation of the images of past,
present, and future. Such minor texts included, for example, genealogies,
notes of the Six Ages of the World (de sex aetatibus mundi), minor and
paschal annals. These works often were used as propaganda by courtly
authors. Being short and easy to understand, these texts legitimized the
ruling Carolingian dynasty, created its historical background, eliminated
its rivals from history. Such texts circulated intensively around the empire,
but outside the court they quickly loosed their propagandistic content
which confl icted with the attitudes of local elites. The manuscripts of the
ninth–eleventh centuries show where the ‘limits of possible’ lay and how
this confl ict took place. Copyists, redactors, and readers in the periphery
of the empire were interested more in the chronological schemes of such
texts than in their propagandistic content. These people were interested
more in counting years and fi lling chronological lacunas than in mentioning
or forgetting particular historical fi gures. The codicological context of
such texts helps us to follow their perception by an ‘alien’ audience. One
manuscript easily could contain texts which were ideologically antagonistic,
but which together were able to cover and characterize a long period of
time. The study of South German manuscripts throws a new light on the
problem of the emergence of medieval annalistic writing. The birth of this
genre cannot be adequately explained by means of the evolutionist model
which is widely accepted by modern scholars. Minor and paschal annals
were not predecessors of ‘major’ annals, it is even problematic to regard
them as ‘historical writing’. They had other purposes and were intended,
fi rst of all, for temporal orientation in the Sixth (and the last) of the Ages
of the World. They refl ect a gradual victory of the Christian notion of time
and a growth of eschatological tension in the Carolingian society.

Keywords:
Middle Ages, historical writing, annals, genealogies, Six Ages of the World, codicology, Carolingian empire, Germany, historical culture, monasteries
References

Гимон Т.В. Историописание раннесредневековой Англии и Древней Руси:
Сравнительное исследование. М., 2012.
Егоров Д.Н. Средние века. Историография и источниковедение. М., 1916.
Ч. 1–2: 1912/1913 уч. год.
Историописание и историческая мысль западноевропейского Средневеко-
вья: Практикум-хрестоматия / Авт.-сост. М.С. Бобкова, С.Г. Меремин-
ский, А.И. Сидоров. М., 2010. Кн. 2.
Люблинская А.Д. Источниковедение истории средних веков. Л., 1955.
Сидоров А.И. Отзвук настоящего. Историческая мысль в эпоху каролинг-
ского возрождения. СПб., 2006.
Сидоров А.И. Генеалогические конструкции как способ легитимации вла-
сти франкских правителей VII–IX вв. // СВ. 2007. Вып. 68 (2).
Сидоров А.И. Анналы королевства франков: Прошлое на службе настоящего //
Проблемы истории, филологии, культуры. Магнитогорск, 2010. № 4.
Сидоров А.И. Книги по франкской истории в культурном пространстве Ка-
ролингской империи: актуальный запрос на прошлое // Люди и тексты.
Исторический альманах, 2013: Историческое знание в контексте книж-
ной культуры. М., 2014.
Alibert D. Sacre royal et onction royale à l’époque carolingienne // Anthropologies
juridiques. Mélanges Pierre Braun. Limoges, 1998.
Annales Heremi // MGH SS. T. 3.
Annales Sangallenses breves // MGH SS. T. 1.
Bruckner A. Scriptoria Medii Aevi Helvetica 5. Schreibschule der Diozese
Konstanz: Stift Einsiedeln. Geneva, 1943.
Brunhölzl F. Geschichte der lateinischen Literatur des Mittelalters. München,
1975–1992. Bd. 1–2.
Caenegem R.C. van, Ganshof F.-L. Guide to the Sources of Medieval History.
Amsterdam; N.Y.; Oxford, 1987.
Catalogi regum Francorum praetermissimi // MGH SRG. T. 7.
Commemoratio genealogiae domni Karoli gloriosissimi imperatoris // MGH SS.
T. 13.
Cordoliani A. Les manuscrits de comput ecclésiastique de l’Abbaye de Saint Gall
du VIIIe au XIIe siècle // Zeitschrift für Schweizerische Kirchengeschichte.
1955. Bd. 49.
Dumville D. What is a Chronicle? // The Medieval Chronicle II: Proceeding
of the 2nd International Conference on the Medieval Chronicle, Driebergen/
Utrecht, 16–21 July 1999. Amsterdam; N.Y., 2002.
Foot S. Finding the meaning of form: narrative in annals and chronicles //
Writing medieval history. Oxford, 2005.
Ganshof F.-L. L’historiographie dans la monarchie franque sous les Merovingiens
et les Carolingiens. Monarchie franque unitaire et Francie occidentale // La
462
storiografi a altomedievale. Spoleto, 1970. Vol. 2. (Settimane di studio del
centro italiano di studi sull`alto Medioevo; 17).
Goffart W. The Supposedly “Frankish” Table of Nations: An Edition and Study //
Frühmittelalterliche Studien. B., 1983. Bd. 17.
Grundmann H. Geschichtsschreibung im Mittelalter. Göttingen, 1965.
Guenée B. Histoire et culture historique dans l’Occident médiéval. P., 1980.
Innes M., McKitterick R. The writing of history // Carolingian culture: Emulation
and Innovation. Cambridge, 1993.
Jaeschke K.-U. Annales // Lexikon des Mittelalters. München; Zürich, 1980. Bd. 1.
Keynes S. Annals // The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England.
Oxford, 1999.
Krusch B. Der Bayername, der Kosmograph von Ravenna und die fränkische
Völkertafel // Neues Archiv der Gesellschaft für ältere deutsche
Geschichtskunde. 1928. Bd. 47.
Manitius M. Geschichte der lateinischen Literatur des Mittelalters. München,
1911. Bd. 1–2.
McCormick M. Les annales du haut Moyen Âge. Turnhout, 1975. (Typologie
des sources du Moyen Âge occidental; Fasc. 14).
McKitterick R. Constructing the Past in the early Middle Ages: The Case of the
Royal Frankish Annals // Transactions of the Royal Historical Society. 6th
ser. Cambridge, 1997. Vol. 7.
McKitterick R. History and memory in the Carolingian world. Cambridge,
2004.
Molinier A. Les sources de l’histoire de la France des origines aux guerres
d’Italie. P., 1901–1906. Vol. 1–6.
Monod G. Études critiques sur les sources de l’histoire merovingienne. P.,
1872.
Monod G. Études critiques sur les sources de l’histoire carolingienne. P., 1898.
The Moore Bede: Cambridge University Library ms. KK. 5.16 / Ed.
P.H. Blair; With a contribution by R.A.B. Mynors. Copenhagen, 1959.
(EEMF; Vol. 9).
Müllenhoff K. Deutsche Altertumskunde / Ed. M. Roediger. B., 1892. Bd. 3.
Oexle O.G. Die Karolinger und die Stadt des heiligen Arnulfus //
Frühmittelalterliche Studien. B., 1967. Bd. 1.
Poole R. Chronicles and Annals. A Brief Outline of Their Origin and Growth.
Oxford, 1926.
Regum Merowingorum genealogia // MGH SS. T. 2. P. 307
Reuter T. Introduction // The Annals of Fulda. Manchester; N.Y., 1992.
Scherrer G. Verzeichniss der Handschriften der Stiftsbibliothek von St. Gallen.
Halle, 1875.
Story J. The Frankish Annals of Lindisfarne and Kent // ASE. 2005. Vol. 34.
Wattenbach W., Lewison W., Löwe H. Deutschlands Geschichtsquellen im
Mittelalter. Weimar, 1952–1990. Bd. 1–7.