Date of Graduation

12-2022

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in English (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

English

Advisor

Joshua B. Smith

Committee Member

Freddie C. Dominguez

Second Committee Member

John T. Duval

Keywords

Chronicle, Early Modern, Welsh

Abstract

Elis Gruffydd’s Cronicl is the longest piece of original prose ever written in the Welsh language, and the first example of writing by a Welsh author for a Welsh audience produced on the Continent. In 2018, Elis’s Cronicl was added to the prestigious UNESCO UK Memory of the World Register, one of only five such recognitions in Wales, giving the Cronicl globally recognized status. Despite this, Elis’s Cronicl is understudied, a “forgotten gem” most of which has never been transcribed, translated, or published in book form. Elis lived and wrote in the British military center and staple port, Calais, which attracted a variety of nationalities, cultures, publishers, and independent thinkers. Elis is the first known Welshman to convert to Protestantism and write about his experience. He gives an eyewitness account of important events like the Field of the Cloth of Gold, the coronation of Anne Boleyn, and hearings at the Star Chamber. Most significant to me, however, is that he used the Welsh language for this document, which allowed him to create a document for the preservation of his native culture and language. Unlike his contemporary chroniclers, Elis did not write for a patron or monarch. The first-person insight of a soldier in the field is rare, especially in this period. Few scholars have examined this document, and the text has not been edited or translated in full, meaning access is greatly reduced. Only small portions of the Cronicl have ever been analyzed or published. This text, particularly the Tudor portion, is understudied, and my research provides a new historical reading of a source that has much left to reveal.

Available for download on Monday, February 17, 2025

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