This wide-ranging study examines the role of the dream in medieval culture with reference to philosophical, legal and theological writings as well as literary and autobiographical works. Stephen Kruger studies the development of theories of dreaming, from the Neoplatonic and patristic writers to late medieval re-interpretations, and shows how these theories relate to autobiographical accounts and to more popular treatments of dreaming. He considers previously neglected material including one important dream vision by Nicole Oresme, and arrives at a new understanding of this literary genre, and of medieval attitudes to dreaming in general.
• This is the first really wide-ranging study of medieval attitudes to dreaming, which ranged from fascination to deep suspicion • The book is relevant to cultural historians as well as to literary scholars, and refers to works of philosophy, law and theology as well as the purely literary works that have received most attention up to now • It covers the whole Middle Ages, from the Church Fathers to the beginning of the Renaissance
Acknowledgments; List of abbreviations; Introduction: modern and medieval dreams; 1. Dreambooks and their audiences; 2. The doubleness and middleness of dreams; 3. The patristic dream; 4. From the fourth to the twelfth century; 5. Aristotle and the late-medieval dream; 6. Dreams and fiction; 7. Dreams and life; Notes; Bibliography; Index.