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Author ORCID Identifier



Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program

Germanic Languages & Literatures

Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded


First Advisor

Robert Sullivan

Subject Categories

German Literature


The cluster of anonymous Middle High German epics known as the Spielmannsepen presents an interesting challenge to notions of genre and identity in the Middle Ages. This project explores some of the issues surrounding those notions in three particular texts, including König Rother, Orendel, and St. Oswald. Discussions of genre and identity complement one another in this work because each functions as a means of categorization. Questions surrounding the poems’ manuscript traditions and presumed composition dates are analyzed, and aspects of the eponymous heroes’ identities are also examined.