Our spring sale is on! Use promo code SPRING24 at checkout to save 50% on any order!

Unravels Umberto Eco's classic mystery novel

Look Inside


Preface     xi
Author's Notes     15
Introduction     17
Chapter One: Umberto Eco, Semiotics, and Medieval Thought     19
Chapter Two: A Brief Chronology of the Middle Ages     31
Chapter Three: An Annotated Guide to the Historical and Literary References in The Name of the Rose     35
Chapter Four: Notes on the Text of The Name of the Rose Including Translations of All Non-English Passages     94
Postscript: For Those Who Have Finished The Name of the Rose     177
Works by Umberto Eco     185
Bibliography     189
About the Authors     193


Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose is a brilliant mystery set in a fictitious medieval monastery. The text is rich with literary, historical, and theoretical references that make it eminently re-readable. The Key makes each reading fuller and more meaningful by helping the interested reader not merely to read but also to understand Eco's masterful work. Inspired by pleas from friends and strangers, the authors, each trained in Classics, undertook to translate and explain the Latin phrases that pepper the story. They have produced an approachable, informative guide to the book and its setting--the middle ages. The Key includes an introduction to the book, the middle ages, Umberto Eco, and philosophical and literary theories; a useful chronology; and reference notes to historical people and events. The clear explanations of the historical setting and players will be useful to anyone interested in a general introduction to medieval history.
Adele J. Haft is Associate Professor of Classics, Hunter College, City University of New York. Jane G. White is chair of the Department of Languages, Dwight Englewood School. Robert J. White is Professor of Classics and Oriental Studies, Hunter College, City University of New York.