Emotional Rhetoric in Aelfric's Letter to the Monks of Eynsham

It appears your Web browser is not configured to display PDF files. Download adobe Acrobat or click here to download the PDF file.

Click here to download the PDF file.


Cherrett, Edith Elizabeth




The Epistola Alfrici de consuetudine monachorum (Ælfric's Letter to the Monks of Eynsham) is a monastic customary written in the form of a letter in 1005 CE by Ælfric, a key figure in the Anglo-Saxon Benedictine sphere. Ælfric's Letter displays a powerful rhetorical strategy, by which Ælfric seeks to influence the emotional community of Anglo-Saxon monasticism in the eleventh century. This thesis explores his rhetorical use of pathos, ethos, and logos in the Letter to show that the layers to Aelfric's seemingly bland injunctions persuaded the reader, and displayed the emotional community he envisioned for Eynsham. I also argue that while Ælfric's audience was primarily the monks of Eynsham, the intended audience for this customary included a broader readership of reform-minded monks. The rhetoric presented in the Letter would have resonated with Ælfric's colleagues from his formative years at Winchester Abbey.


History - Medieval




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 

Thesis Degree Level: 


Thesis Degree Discipline: 


Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

Items in CURVE are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. They are made available with permission from the author(s).