“Někdy dojde k zvláštním věcem…” Pět středohornoněmeckých textů o strastech dvorské lásky

The book presents Czech translations of five texts that belong to the genre called Märe, Kurzepik, or Versnovellen in German scholarship (in English, the terms “short verse romance” or “verse Novelle” are typically used). Included are the anonymous Mauritius von Craûn (“Sir Mauritius von Craûn”), Dietrich von der Glesseʼs Der Borte (“The Belt”), Konrad von Würzburgʼs Herzmaere (“Tale of a Heart”), the anonymous Der Rosendorn (“The Rose Thorn”) and Das Nonnenturnier (“The Nuns’ Tournament”). The introductory study discusses the manuscript tradition of the poems, their language, structure, and their position in contemporary literary discourse. The closing study describes the corresponding phenomena in medieval visual arts. All five texts focus on the relation between men and women, using concepts of idealized courtly love (amour courtois or, in German, Minne) as a background. However, the texts are far from simply replicating the patterns of courtly romance found in the canonical extended epics composed for medieval German courts. Rather, they focus on inconvenient, extravagant, and extreme sides of the ideal, sometimes touching on or crossing the borders of parody. They do not shy away from obscene and naturalistic aspects of sensual love to a degree that may appear surprising or even shocking.