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might be inclined to assign the adventures of Bohort disguised and of Kay, Sagremor and Dodinel, which extend from p. 301 to p. 321 (where the great quest of Gawain and his companions for Lancelot begins) to the author of the previous episodes in which Bohort is undisguised. There is an indication, however, that the last set of adventures, which are particularly absurd-Lancelot, who is rescuing the Queen from the disguised Bohort, being called away to fulfill a vow which he has made to an old damsel wearing a gold circlet on her bald head, etc.—is a still later addition by another hand, for, p. 301, Lancelot, the hero of the entire romance, is introduced as if he were a new character! The whole paragraph, which begins these adventures, reads as if it opened a new story, but is too long to quote here. In substance, it tells how a year after Meleagant's death, a week after Whitsuntide, Arthur went on a big hunt in the forest of Camelot. The people who had attended his court at Whitsuntide had not yet dispersed, so that four kings and many other men of high rank participated in the hunt. Among the Queen's escort were Kay, Sagremor, Dodinel and Lancelot-“ et li quars fu mesires Lancelot del Lac, li fix au roy Ban de Benoyc qui asses estoit & preus et uaillans." Like Meleagant, Bohort (who remains unrecognized and unnamed throughout the adventure) tries to carry off Guinevere, but Lancelot intervenes, and, by wounding him, prevents the execution of his attempt, although he, too, is severely wounded in the combat.
With IV, 321, begins the quest for Lancelot by Gawain and his companions which occupies so large a part of the remainder of the romance. 126 It does not end, indeed, until V, 318, and so extends through nearly a third of the whole Lancelot. I do not believe that originally this part of the Lancelot was either planned or executed on any such scale. Apart from the interpolations based on the
128 There had been three quests for Lancelot before this in our romance, in all of which Gawain played the leading rôle, viz., III, 226–231, 271-321, continued 358-405, in which Gawain is accompanied by twenty knights (p. 273), and lastly, IV, 143–153. Baudemagus remarks, V, 98, that he had known sixtysix knights to go in quest of Lancelot and not find him. No such quest, however, is related in our MSS.
It is remarked, V, 270, that a quest should last only a year and a day, but that Gawain and his companions had already been absent on this one (i. e., the one which begins IV, 321) for three years.
Estoire and Queste del Saint Graal, which I have already discussed, and still others based on the Mort Artu, which I have still to discuss, in the course of time there were, no doubt, additions to and modifications of this quest for Lancelot, as it originally stood. There are clear indications of such changes, especially in what Sommer calls Part III (i. e., his Vol. V), which, however (on Paulin Paris's initiative) has been often called the Agravain. Let us examine these indications:
At the beginning of the quest, IV, 321, Arthur fixed the number of questers at ten (including Gawain). They were as follows: (1) Yvain, (2) Guerrehes, (3) Gaheries, (4) Mordred, (5) Hector des Mares, (6) Agloval, (7) Li Lais Hardis, (8) Brandelis, (9) Gosenains d'Estrangot, (10) Gawain. But later Kay (331), Sagremor (332), and Dodinel (334) joined the quest, making thirteen in all. At V, 8, accordingly, thirteen is said to be the total number of questers, though twelve is the number stated, V, 28, 35, 148. Before the accession of Kay, Sagremor and Dodinel, the original band of questers had already separated (p. 328) to pursue their several ways.
It will be observed now that Kay, Sagremor and Dodinel are the three knights whose adventures in connection with Lancelot and the disguised Bohort, IV, 301 ff., as there was reason to believe, constituted additions by a new hand to the previous Bohort adventures. This same hand, no doubt, added these three characters to the original list of ten questers. Adventures, however, are actually told of only one of the three, viz., Sagremor, and then, V, 24 ff., incidentally in connection with another character (Guerrehes). But the same thing is true of Brandelis (V, 39 ff.) and Gosenain (V, 41), among the original questers. They play even more insignificant parts than Sagremor, and Li Lais Hardis, of this original list, not only has no adventures at all related of him, but is not heard of again in the cycle, except that he is included in one of those lists of names (V, 340), which the scribes were accustomed to expand at will. On the other hand, with V, 3, still another character, Agravain (Gawain's brother), appears on the scene as a fourteenth quester, although up to that point he had not been mentioned in connection with the quest for Lancelot. Sommer's Part III (Vol.
V), the so-called Agravain,127 commences, as follows, with a perfectly natural reference to Agravain's previous participation in this quest: "Chi endroit dist li contes que quant Agreuains se fu partis de sez compaignons si com vous aues oi quil erra .ij. iours sans auenture trouuer que on doie ramentoir en liure," etc. This passage proves beyond dispute that the original quest for Lancelot later suffered modifications, but the confusions and inconsistencies before it which have been cited, to my mind, already supply convincing evidence to the same effect.128
At V, 62, two more questers, not named in the original list, viz., Lionel and Bohort, join in the search for Lancelot.
127 In spite of Brugger's assertion to the contrary, Zs. f. frz. Spr. u. Litt., XXXVI, 206 (review section, 1910), the Agravain does frequently represent a separate division in the MS. tradition. See what I have said on the subject in the ROMANIC REVIEW, IV, 464 (1913). What interpretation we should put upon this fact is another matter. If the Lancelot were divided into three volumes of approximately the same number of pages each, the third volume might very well begin with the Agravain, as is actually the case in Sommer's edition, and the division, then, be due to purely mechanical considerations; but the extant MSS. of the Lancelot do not show any such division into three volumes, or even into three parts (distinguished by blank leaves between or some such device). Taking the fact of the division and the coincident confusion as to the characters and their adventures in the quest for Lancelot at this point, I believe that the first occasion of the division being made just here was connected in some way with an attempt at a new redaction of this quest.
Sommer, IV, 362, note 2, has pointed out how the scribe of MS. Royal, 19. C. XIII, observed the unjustified entry of Agravain on the scene and tried vainly to explain it.
128 In vol. V we find still other evidences of change in the part of the narrative which is covered by this quest: p. 21, Guerrehes's love affair with the "damoisele de la blance lande," is referred to as well-known, though not mentioned elsewhere in the extant MSS.; p. 33, it is said of the lady whose husband Guerrehes slew and who took the veil that she was a very 'sainte chose et religieuse, ensi comme li contes le deuisera cha auant en maint lieu," but, as a matter of fact, we never hear of her again; p. 35, we have a reference to Guerrehes's rescue of the damsel who cares for Agravain in prison, but this adventure is not previously told in the extant MSS. Note, also, pp. 221 f.: That we should have here within the space of a single page two excuses for not relating all the adventures of the knights of the quest seems a hint that a redactor is shortening the narrative. This seems confirmed by p. 224, where Lionel suddenly appears as Vagor's prisoner in "lille estrange" in a way which is not entirely cleared up by his subsequent story (p. 229) to Lancelot. Even stronger confirmation is afforded by p. 236, where we have a list of the knights whom Bohort had vanquished at the "tertre deruee," although there had been no account of any such combats in our MSS.
Despite these indications of modifications of the original design of the quest for Lancelot, which begins with IV, 321, it is, in my opinion, only in the case of a few passages-important ones, to be sure that we can draw lines of demarcation with practical certainty between older and later materials. Here, as everywhere in our romances, of course, the author of such additions makes the new materials dovetail with the old, and, perhaps, scribes and redactors, by still later additions, aided in the harmonizing process. Notwithstanding, however, the difficulties for the higher criticism which this procedure creates, I believe that we may distinguish as later insertions in this part of the Lancelot the following: V, 59105 (except 87-91), and part of 112-124-still further 166-188, 215-223. I will take them up in their due order.
J. DOUGLAS BRUCE
UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE
(To be continued)
DOCTORAL DISSERTATIONS IN THE ROMANCE LANGUAGES AT HARVARD UNIVERSITY. A SURVEY
HOUGH taking chronological precedence over the Department of Romance Languages of the Johns Hopkins University by one dissertation, the Department of Romance Languages of Harvard University only began offering well-defined courses for the doctoral degree about ten years after the former institution had established courses with that aim in view. Among the pioneers in this important work at Harvard was Professor E. S. Sheldon, who first became a member of the Department in 1877. In 1884 he was advanced to an assistant professorship of Romance philology—the first assistant professorship of this specific nature to be founded in an American university. (The first full professorship in Romance philology was that created for Professor Todd at Columbia in 1893.) Like Professor Elliott, Professor Sheldon has contributed largely toward moulding philological thought in America, and his influence has been far-reaching. His pupils in the aggregate are numerous and his thoroughly scientific methods have been introduced in many of our more important institutions. Professor Adolphe Cohn, who taught in Harvard from 1884 to 1891, was the first professor in an American university who had received all of his advanced training in France. An archiviste paléographe of the Ecole nationale des Chartes in 1874, he applied in his courses relating to literary criticism and history the rigorous method and fine discrimination so happily characteristic of French scholarship. Professor Cohn has been a unique figure in academic life. Thanks to his brilliant intellect, broad scholarship and indefatigable enthusiasm, the university study of literature in America was elevated to the same critical plane as that of philology (in the narrower sense). Before his influence began to make itself felt, the Ph.D. degree and philology were considered inseparable. To him probably more than to any other man is due the credit for having stemmed the tide that throughout the eighties was steadily flowing