Crowdsourcing John Gower's 'Confessio amantis'

A British Academy Funded Project

by Malte Urban

A bit of progress

It has been a long time since anything on the site has changed, but I have recently decided to take this project to the next level, so there will be more regular updates from now on.

The most important thing that has been added to the site in recent days is a new page that provides collations of transcriptions that I am working on at the moment. Rather than focussing on specific sections of the poem, I am starting at the beginning of the prologue and am working my way through those manuscripts of which I have digital images. At this point, these manuscripts are mainly from the collection of the Bodleian Library, but I will endeavour to also transcribe individual passages from manuscripts that are only partially available on the web.

The collation page can be found under the Juxta Collations tab at the top of the page and I would appreciate any feedback on functionality and usability.

I am currently working on a way to replicate manuscript layout in the transcriptions, but given my status as a coding novice, this may take a while to become fully functional. If anyone has experience of using XML (and/or TEI) to encode manuscript layout, please get in touch.

While working on transcriptions, I am also developing a funding bid in relation to creating a fully functional electronic edition of Confessio amantis, and I will be sharing drafts and problems on this site over the coming months. If anyone is interested in becoming part of the funding bid as a co-investigator, I’d be happy to hear from you!

Finally, I am hoping to develop the site into much more of a regular blog than it currently is. I will try to keep is as focussed on John Gower as possible, but there may be digressions along the way. If anyone has any Gower-related news or thoughts to share, please do not hesitate to register on the site or get in touch with me to discuss joining the site.

by Malte Urban

Transcription System Guide and Transcription Protocol now online

It has taken me longer than anticipated, and I’m sure that the Transcription Protocol is not complete, yet, but I’m hoping that it gets our transcriptions on their way.

You can find the Guide, which includes basic instructions on registering to become a transcriber, here, and the Transcription Protocol here. Both are also directly accessible as sub-pages of the Manuscript Transcriptions tab at the top of the page.

Further manuscript images (Bodleian Lyell 31) have been ordered, and I will be adding more images of Yale Beinecke Osborn MS fa.1 in due course.

For those who are going to add transcriptions, please add the line number at the beginning of each new line you transcribe. I will endeavour to add line ranges for each manuscript page in due course. Line references will mirror those from Russell Peck’s TEAMS edition, which, incidentally, is a great aid for transcribing the poem. You can access it here.

As always, be in touch about any suggestions etc by adding comments to the website, eMailing me or Tweeting @econfessio.

by Malte Urban

Manuscript Images Available

The section of the site where manuscript images are housed is now live. Either click on ‘Manuscript Transcriptions’ above or click HERE.

In due course, this section will be where transcriptions are produced, but I first need to draft a basic transcription protocol to get the process off to a consistent start.

Until that time, feel free to browse the images. More images of Beinecke Osborn fa.1 will follow, and images of Lyell 31 will be made available ASAP.

by Malte Urban


Welcome to This website is currently under construction, but information and data are constantly added and updated.

You can find more information about the project by clicking on ‘About‘ at the top of the page or by clicking here.

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