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England was more widely and enduringly francophone in the middle ages than many standard accounts of its history, culture and language allow. The development of French in England, whether known as "Anglo-Norman" or "Anglo-French", is deeply interwoven both with medieval English and with the spectrum of Frenches, insular and continental, used within and outside the realm. As the language of nearly a thousand literary texts, of much administration, and of many professions and occupations, the French of England needs more attention than it has so far received. The essays in this volume form a new cultural history focussed round, but not confined to, the presence and interactions of French speakers, writers, readers, texts and documents in England from the eleventh to the later fifteenth century. Taking the French of England into account does not simply add new material to our existing narratives of medieval English culture, but changes them, restoring a multi-vocal, multi-cultural medieval England in all its complexity.
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