Joseph of Exeter

(f1. 1190)
   Medieval Latin poet whose Latin name is Josephus Iscanus, and in his poems he says he a native of Exeter, Devon, and the fellow-townsman and lifelong friend of Baldwin, archbishop of Canterbury. While he was studying in France, in 1188, Archbishop Baldwin invited Joseph to join him on the Third Crusade to the Holy Land (he had parted with King Richard at Marseilles.) The bishop died in the Holy Land and Joseph returned home. Nothing more is known of his life but he goes down in history as one of the best of medieval Latin poets. Although he is probably best known for his De Bello Trojano (c. 1184)-an epic poem in six books, written in the style of Virgil-his adventures in the Crusade were recounted in Antiocheis. His poems: "Panegyricus ad Henricum," "De Institutione Cyri," "Nugæ Amatoriæ," "Epigrammata," "Diversi generis Carmina."
   Sources: Dictionary of National Biography. Electronic Edition 1.1. Oxford University Press, 1997. Great Books Online (www.bartleby.com).

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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