On the verso of the title page of Book
I, R. M. Moss writes: "Certain original medieval sources have been
adapted to the language and style adopted for the narration: in this,
Volume I, There is no Rose of such Virtue is a well known medieval devotional
poem. The story Of Gawain and his Lady appears not only in Chaucer’s
Canterbury Tales but various other sources: it is freely adapted to the
purposes of its narrator, employing medieval stylistic traditions of alliteration
and use of the present tense at moments of great emotion or significance.
The Riddle Song is closely modelled on a 15th century song; Maiden in
the Moor Lay is also of that period. The Lyke Wake Dirge is a traditional
Yorkshire song and appears in several versions. The music for all these
are the compositions of the author. The geste, The Knight of Courtesy,
is from an early source but has been much reduced in length. The geste,
The Snow Babe, (as its narrator suggests) does indeed come from a medieval
Latin source but in this case has been much embroidered and expanded although
its “politically incorrect” core is true to the original.
The story, Alison and the Faery Gold and its accompanying music and songs
are entirely original. Now is the time of Christemas is, again adapted
from a medieval source and the music that of the author. The Yule Play
is entirely original, but incorporates typical ideas of death and resurrection
and the bawdy humour much loved by our forebears. The opening verse and
melody of Robin m’aime may or may not be correctly remembered from
a recording heard many years ago. The other words are all original. (My
thanks to Laurence Stracquadanio who checked my French.)"