This definitive and long-awaited edition of the C Version of Piers Plowman now joins the California editions of the A and B Versions to complete the set of Piers Plowman texts prepared under the general editorship of George Kane. Piers Plowman is the single most important Middle English poem, with the exception of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. The forty-eight extant manuscripts of the poem are classified in three main versions: A, the earliest, written about 1362; B, a longer revision, written about 1378; and C, the most finished and public form, written about 1394. The basis of this edition is the text in Huntingon Library MS 143, corrected and restored from the evidence of all known manuscripts of the C tradition to that of the first fair copy of the poet's revision materials. The correction and restoration are described in an extensive introduction, and there is a full apparatus of variant readings. Two appendices cover excluded lines and passages and the Ilchester Prologue.
George Russell is Professor Emeritus of the University of Melbourne. George Kane is Emeritus Professor of English Language and Medieval Literature of the University of London and author of Middle English Literature (1951), Chaucer (1984), and Chaucer and Langland (California, 1989).