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date: 20 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Medieval European scholars often found themselves worrying over the reliability of their Latin texts. As Latin sought to establish itself in the Mediterranean basin as a language of learning and sophistication alongside the more prestigious Greek and Arabic languages, and eventually against the rapidly developing European vernaculars, more and more texts from those languages were, almost necessarily, translated into Latin and absorbed into the canon of works at the core of Latin education. Medieval Latin civilization continued to be dependent on the Greeks and would later become profoundly reliant on Arab civilization. But while the Arabic-to-Latin translation movement would, indeed, have never existed without the confi dent, ambitious, and—literally—expansive culture of the Twelfth-Century Renaissance. The simultaneous overpowering and giving in to Greek and Arab culture in the twelfth-century translation movement was, therefore, profoundly transformative, its conquering surrender issuing in strikingly new cultural forms. This transforming potential of translation can be seen in many ways in the Latin Middle Ages.

Keywords: Medieval European scholars, Latin texts, Mediterranean basin, Greek languages, Arabic languages

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