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Document Details :
Title: De geschiedenis van de Middelnederlandse psaltervertalingen herzien
Subtitle: De middeleeuwse overzettingen van het psalmboek uit het zuiden van het Nederlandse taalgebied (ca. 1300 - ca. 1550)
Author(s): DESPLENTER, Youri
Journal: Ons Geestelijk Erf
Volume: 83 Issue: 1 Date: Maart 2012
In 1940, C.C. de Bruin published an article in which he expanded on the presumable evolution of the Middle Dutch psalter translations. Although De Bruin indicated that his reconstruction was tentative, he used it as a guide for editing Middle Dutch bible translations in the 1970s and 1980s. Very few alterations were added to his first hypotheses. In this article, I develop an alternative view on the Middle Dutch translations of the psalter made in the southern part of the Netherlands, using the current paradigm with attention for the co-text, context and the function of such texts. That enables me to leave behind De Bruin’s perspective, which was based on the so called ‘standard versions’ and ‘mixed version’ of psalter translations. As it seems, the first Middle Dutch translation of the psalter was spread from West-Flanders to Brabant, possibly from a Charterhouse in Bruges, in the first half of the 14th century. In Brabant, it underwent several developments, which were presumably all connected with local (groups of) cloisters. The so called ‘Bible Translator of 1360’ could for instance be responsible for one of those adaptations. From Brabant, one or more of the revised versions of the initial Flemish translation ended up in the Rhine-Meuse area, and induced the realization of the first psalter translation of the Modern Devotion, a Middle Dutch version of the psalms mainly used in the northeast of the Netherlands. Presumably, it heavily influenced the second psalter translation of the Modern Devotion, a version intended for the tertiaries in Holland and Utrecht, and a northern German tradition of psalter translations. In an earlier stage, that last tradition apparently had been influenced by one of the Brabant adaptations of the Flemish psalter translation. Around the middle of the 15th century, the Brabant adaptations underwent further developments, especially within certain (groups of) communities, like the augustine convent of Jericho in Brussels or the tertiary convent of Catharinadal in Hasselt, as they were influenced by the northern translations of the Modern Devotion. In manuscripts from the period after 1500, no new Middle Dutch psalter translations have been handed over. Presumably, the old translations were still in use or gradually had been replaced by printed versions of the psalter.