Middle English Compendium

Unrestricted Access


The Middle English Compendium includes 4 parts that can be searched or browsed:

  1. the Middle English Dictionary-an electronic version of the print MED. Its 15,000 pages offer a comprehensive analysis of lexicon and usage for the period 1100-1500. This electronic version of the MEDpreserves all the details of the print MED, but goes far beyond this, by converting its contents into an enormous database, searchable in ways impossible within any print dictionary.
  2. HyperBibliography of Middle English which includes all the works that are cited in the Middle English Dictionary. While not an exhaustive bibliography of Middle English writing, it offers the most comprehensive single list of ME materials presently available in electronic form.
  3. Corpus of Middle English Prose and Verse, a fully searchable selection of 146 texts (as of 11/07), including works by Chaucer, Gower, Langland, Lydgate, and Malory as well as many minor figures, and a number of anonymous works. While the ultimate goal is to include in the corpus all editions of Middle English texts used in the Middle English Dictionary, and the more recent scholarly editions which in some cases may have superseded them, at present "text conversion continues at a modest rate as time and money permit.
  4. Related Resources, containing links to "digitized manuscripts containing Middle English" and online catalogs of manuscripts.


Extensive help is available from the Middle English Compendium main page and from most search pages.

For help using these indexes see: How do I find an article on my topic?

Dates covered


Updating frequency

Additional full texts will be added at an unspecified rate.


Middle English Dictionary and a collection of full-text Middle English texts.

Type of coverage

Thousands of word definitions, an extensive bibliography, and a small but growing collection of full-text documents.

Print counterpart or
related resources

The Middle English Dictionary. A number of the full text works are based on print volumes from various series, including the Early English Text Society, available in Rutgers University Libraries.

Producer/content provider

University of Michigan Press Digital Projects

Vendor/electronic presentation provider

University of Michigan