"A fair field full of folk"


A line taken from a narrative poem by William Langland, The Vision concerning Piers Plowman. Written in the late Middle Ages, the poem is an allegorical social and moral satire about medieval religious ideas.

The 'field full of folk' refers to the world between heaven and hell, i.e the world of the living represented by mankind. 

It has proved difficult to present an authoratative version of the poem, as not only is the text written in archaic Middle English, but several manuscripsts exist. The Bodleian Libray holds more versions of Piers Plowman than any other individual library, housing 15 of the 52 of the surviving and complete manuscripts. One of these manuscripts is shown on the left.