Piers Plowman Performance at St Edmund Hall

The Fair Field of Folk. Piers Plowman: A Potted Adaptation of the B Text

When: 11 February 2023, 2–3pm
Where: Broadbent Garden (behind the library church of St-Peter-in-the-East) at St Edmund Hall, Queen’s Lane, OX1 4AR Oxford. Part of the National Garden opening day 2-5pm. The performance ticket is included in the charity donation of 4GBP to see the gardens
Director: Eloise Peniston

Starring

  • Solas Macdonald as  Will
  • Jonathan Honnor as Piers Plowman
  • Clare-Rose McIntyre as Holychurche
  • Rei Tracks as Conscience

With original music by Anna Cowan

Eloise writes: I first discovered Piers Plowman at a bus stop. I was characteristically lost with a dead phone and only a charity shop book to keep me company. While no one murmured ‘Thou still unravished bride of quietness’, at me, I was acutely aware of being in the presence of the literary as I thumbed through the wind-swept pages. I was intensely confused, which, at the age of fifteen, I supposed was the hidden intention of all literature. With the charmed hand of A. V. C. Schmidt to guide me, I followed a man named Will, who fell asleep beside a stream on a May morning in Malvern Hills. There he falls into a succession of dreams, beginning with a tower on a hill, a dungeon, and a fair field of folk. On his quest for Truth, Will meets a host of allegorical personifications, wandering through the marriage and later trial of Lady Mede, the confession of the Seven Sins, the Crucifixion, and the Harrowing of Hell. In the midst of all, Piers Plowman emerges, taking only momentary repose from his plough to guide Will towards Truth and, rather scandalously, chastise members of the clergy. I remember after being “found” an hour later how I, rather breathlessly, recounted the events of the B text to my mother as she, mid-flap, chastised me about reckless spontaneity and the need for charged phones.

At that bus stop, I knew that, by the fortuity of an Oxfam find, I had discovered something wonderful, but I had no idea that seven years later, I would be scavenging liripipes and slit-mittens in an attempt to bring this dream-vision to life. Now, I often take that humble copy with me to Malvern Hills, and it is positively crammed with pressed, may-morning flowers. However, little did I know then how deeply entrenched this text was into the public sphere or about the literary and literal rebellions that have emerged beneath the mouldboard.

From the pen of a man who described Piers Plowman as “not worth reading”, Gerard Manley Hopkins perfectly captured the flesh-good of the text:

And features, in flesh, what deed he each must do–
His sinew-service where do.

He leans to it, Harry bends, look. Back, elbow, and liquid waist
In him, all quail to the wallowing o’ the plough: ‘s cheek crimsons; curls
Wag or crossbridle, in a wind lifted, windlaced–
See his wind – lilylocks – laced;
Churlsgrace, too, child of Amansstrength, how it hangs or hurls
Them – broad in bluff hide his frowning feet lashed! raced
With, along them, cragiron under and cold furls –
With-a-fountain’s shining-shot furls.
Harry Ploughman
G. M. Hopkins

This particular poem encapsulates the essence of Piers Plowman: pure inscape, or as Stephen Medcalf calls it, an “extraordinary combination of roughness and a delicate magic.” It is incredibly difficult to describe what happens in Piers Plowman but “churlsgrace” is certainly the perfect descriptor for the essence of the text. A mere ploughman knows the way to Truth and is gracious enough to guide the reader, in return for help in plowing and sowing a half-acre.

Piers Plowman is ultimately a text that encourages mental labour, in a field, at a bus stop, or even in the gardens of St Edmund Hall…

We invite you to toil with us at Teddy Hall on the 11th of February. From a tower on toft, a trumpet shall hail the dream, before the gentle plucking of a harp will guide you to sleep.

Come and set forth on a dream-pilgrimage, exploring political satire, social upheaval, and spiritual crisis. Maybe salvation will be found in the ridge and furrow but if not, you will- at the very least- have a pilgrim badge to take home as a souvenir.

We hope to see you soon in the fair field. God spede þe plouȝ!

Performance poster for Piers Plowman

Medieval Matters: Week 2

I hope that you have all settled back into the rhythms of Oxford life. It’s terribly cold this week, with a thick layer of fog covering Oxford’s spires. Here’s some advice from Alcuin on how to wrap up warm:

Nullatenus capitis cura obmittenda est; levius est pedes dolere quam caput
[Care of the head should never be neglected: it is less serious that the feet should suffer than the head, Ep. 114 ]

I interpret this to mean: don’t forget to wear a warm hat! If you want to care for the head in a less literal sense, we of course have a whole host of intellectually stimulating seminars, reading groups and events for you to enjoy this week:

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • The Medieval Misuse discussion and reading group meets every 2 weeks, on a Thursday 5-6, for an informal discussion about the ways that medieval history, culture and literature are misused by modern political parties and extremist groups. Interested individuals should email: tristan.alphey@stx.ox.ac.uk
  • The Old French Reading Group takes place at 4-5pm at St Hilda’s College (meet by the lodge) on Wednesdays of Even Weeks in association with Oxford Medieval Studies, sponsored by The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH). We welcome readers of Old French of all abilities. For further information, please email alice.hawkins@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk or irina.boeru@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk
  • Oxford Ancient Languages Society (OALS) is running a great programme of classes and events this term – perfect for medievalists who want to brush up or acquire Latin! For full details, see their website here.
  • Please note that the Carlyle Lectures are medieval this year! This year’s lectures will be given by John Hudson, on common law and Roman law and custom, C12-13: https://www.history.ox.ac.uk/carlyle-lectures

EVENTS THIS WEEK:

Monday 23rd January:

  • The Byzantine Graduate Seminar takes place at 12.30-2pm online via Zoom. This week’s speaker will be Rebecca Amendola (La Sapienza Università di Roma), Manuscripts in Motion: The Parma Gospel Book (Ms. Pal. 5) and Its Journey to Italy. To register, please contact the organiser at james.cogbill@worc.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval Latin Manuscript Reading Group led by Matthew Holford and Andrew Dunning is meeting as usual via Teams from 1-2pm. We will start with natural history from a medieval encyclopaedia. Sign up for the mailing list to receive updates and the Teams invite, or contact matthew.holford@bodleian.ox.ac.uk or andrew.dunning@bodleian.ox.ac.uk for more information. 
  • The Queer and Trans Medievalisms Reading and Research Group meets at 3pm at Univ College, 12 Merton St Room 2. This week’s theme is Heldris of Cornwall’s Le Roman de Silence. All extremely welcome! To join the mailing list and get texts in advance, or if you have any questions, email rowan.wilson@univ.ox.ac.uk.   
  • The Medieval History Seminar takes place at 5pm in the Wharton Room, All Souls College and on Teams (Teams link here). This week’s speaker will be Jamie Wood (Lincoln), The Memory of the Martyrs: The topography of sanctity in Visigothic Toledo.’. The Teams session can be accessed by logging in to Teams with your .ox.ac.uk account and joining the group “Medieval History Research Seminar” (team code rmppucs). If you have any difficulties please email: medhistsem@history.ox.ac.uk 

Tuesday 24th January:

  • The Europe in the Later Middle Ages Seminar will take place at 2–3.30pm in the New Seminar Room, St John’s College. Tea and coffee available from 1.45pm. This week’s speaker will be Catherine Holmes, Oxford, ‘Networks, brokerage and identity in the late medieval eastern Mediterranean‘.
  • The Comparative Philology Seminar: Old High German meets at 2.15-4pm in the Lecture Theatre of the Centre for Linguistics and Philology (Walton Street). This week’s speakers will Luise Morawetz and Howard Jones, Introduction/Phonology. All are welcome, basic linguistic knowledge is assumed. 
  • The Medieval Church and Culture Seminar meets at 5-6pm in the Charlese Wellbeloved Room, Harris Manchester College. This week’s speaker will be Susannah Bain (Jesus), ‘Maps, Chronicles and Treaties: defining political connections in late-thirteenth-century northern Italy‘.
  • The John Hudson Carlyle Lectures takes place at 5pm at South School, Examination Schools. This week’s lecture will be Legal development in Europe: a view from the 1190s. This lecture examines patterns of legal development in England, France and north Italy in the latter part of the twelfth century. It suggests that those patterns do not act as a clear guide to the developments that followed in the thirteenth century. This lecture will be followed by a drinks reception in North Schools. All are welcome!

Wednesday 25th January:

  • The Medieval German Graduate Seminar will meet at 11:15am in the island room of Oriel College for discussing the prologue of this term’s text, Heinrich von Neustadt’s Apollonius von Tyrland. If you are interested to come along, contact Henrike Lähnemann, to be added to the teams chat.
  • The Medieval Italian Seminar will take place at 2pm at Rees Davies Room, History Faculty. This week’s speaker will be Paul Oldfield (Manchester), ‘Inquest and History in Thirteenth-Century Puglia’.
  • GLARE (Greek and Latin Reading Group) takes place at 4-5pm at Jesus College. Please meet at Jesus College Lodge. This week’s text will be Demosthenes, Against Neaera, 72–8. All welcome to attend any and all sessions. For more details and specific readings each week, or to be added to the mailing list, email john.colley@jesus.ox.ac.uk or jenyth.evans@seh.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval Latin Document Reading Group meets on Teams at 4-5pm. We are currently focusing on medieval documents from New College’s archive as part of the cataloguing work being carried out there, so there will be a variety of hands, dates and types. A document is sent out in advance but homework is not expected. Contact Michael Stansfield (michael.stansfield@new.ox.ac.uk) for further details and the Teams link.
  • The Old French Reading Group takes place at 4-5pm at St Hilda’s College (meet by the lodge). We welcome readers of Old French of all abilities. For further information, please email alice.hawkins@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk or irina.boeru@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk
  • The Late Antique and Byzantine Seminar takes place at 5pm at the Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St Giles. This week’s speaker will be Olivier Delouis (Maison Française d’Oxford), ‘Teaching Greek grammar to one’s son: an unpublished manual by Nikolaos Artabasdos Rabdas (14th c.)’.
  • The Medieval English Research Seminar takes place at 5.15pm in Lecture Theatre 2, English Faculty, followed by a drinks reception. This week’s speaker will be William Sweet (Independent), ‘Lydgate and Humanist Reading After Arundel’. All welcome.

Thursday 26th January:

  • The Oxford Medieval Commentary Network will meet at 12.45-2.15pm in the McKenna Room at Christ Church. Please note the change of venue! Free lunch from 12.45, seminar paper begins at 1.15. The speaker will be Tristan Franklinos, Wolfson & Oriel Colleges, Oxford, ‘Peter Abelard’s Hymns as exegesis for the sisters of the Paraclete’. Please direct all questions to cosima.gillhammer:chch.ox.ac.uk, or visit the website.
  • The Seminar in Medieval and Renaissance Music will take place on Zoom at 5pm. This week’s speaker will be Julia Craig-McFeely (DIAMM, University of Oxford), The Sadler Sets of Partbooks and Tudor Music Copying. If you are planning to attend a seminar this term, please register using this form. For each seminar, those who have registered will receive an email with the Zoom invitation and any further materials a couple of days before the seminar. If you have questions, please just send an email to matthew.thomson@ucd.ie.
  • The Medieval Misuse discussion and reading group meets at 5-6pm, for an informal discussion about the ways that medieval history, culture and literature are misused by modern political parties and extremist groups. Interested individuals should email: tristan.alphey@stx.ox.ac.uk
  • The Germanic Reading Group meets at 4-5pm on zoom. This week’s topic will be Old Norse skaldic verse (Nelson Goering leading). Please contact Howard Jones Howard.Jones@sbs.ox.ac.uk to be added to the mailing list and receive the zoom link.
  • The Celtic Seminar will take place at 5.15pm via Teams and in The History of the Book Room, English Faculty. This week’s speaker will be Mark Williams (Oxford), ‘Magic and violence in Pedeir Keinc y Mabinogi‘. Please contact david.willis@ling-phil.ox.ac.uk if you need a link.
  • The Medieval Visual Culture Seminar meets at 5.15pm at St Catherine’s College, Arumugam Building. This week’s speakers are Sarah Griffin, Lambeth Palace Library, London, ‘From Hours to Ages: Time in the Large-scale Diagrams of Opicinus de Canistris (1296-c. 1352)‘ and Anya Burgon, Trinity Hall, Cambridge, ‘In a Punctum: Miniature Worlds in Late Medieval Art and Literature‘.
  • The Oxford Interfaith Forum is hosting a lecture by Professor Laurent Mignon, Professor of Turkish Literature at the University of Oxford, UK, at 6-7pm, online. The lecture will be ‘From the People of the Book to the Books of the People: Christian Literature and the 19th Century Ottoman Turkish Literary World‘. For full details and registration, click here.
  • The Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies is hosting The David Patterson Lectures at 6-7pm, at the Catherine Lewis Lecture Room and on zoom. This week’s lecture will be of interest to anyone who teaches papers on the Central Middle Ages, English history, and also to feminist / gender historians of all stripes. The speaker will be Dr Emily Rose, ‘The Expulsion of Jews from England (1290): It is Not What You Think’. To register for online attendance, click here. For enquiries, email enquiries@ochjs.ac.uk.

This weekend marked Lunar New Year: Happy New Year to all who celebrate! This year is the year of the rabbit. I wanted to provide a suitable quote and image but to my knowledge, Alcuin has nothing to write about rabbits, and nor are any to be found in the Ashmole bestiary. So please forgive a temporary departure from our usual material. Here is Albertus Magnus describing the importance of camraderie amongst rabbits:

Est […] animal timidum, et ideo injuriatum relinquit habitationem, quod videns grex totus de loco transit, ac si indignetur ad injurias sociorum
[It is a shy animal, and for that reason when disturbed it flees its home, and seeing this the whole colony leaves the place too, as if offended by the insult to their companion 20:29]

May we medievalists enjoy such loyal companionship!

Announcing the year of the Rabbit (no rabbits were harmed in the making of this year)
Detail from La Queste del Saint Graal, France, N., early 14th century, Royal MS 14 E III, f. 89r

The Oxford Seminars in Cartography (TOSCA)

We’d like to draw your attention to the first of the TOSCA seminars, details below!

‘Please use the postcode’: navigating the past, present, and future conservation needs of the Hereford Mappa Mundi

 -who: Andrew Honey, Bodleian Library, University of Oxford and Conservation Inspector to the Mappa Mundi Trust

-when: Thursday 2 February 2023, 4.30–6pm (GMT)

-where: Sir Victor Blank Lecture Theatre, Weston Library and online via Zoom

-This talk will examine the conservation needs of the Hereford Mappa Mundi, chart the effects of some of the historic repairs and cleaning campaigns carried out in the past, explain the ingenious methods used to mount the map, and outline future conservation needs, as well as presenting some discoveries from recent conservation inspections.

Book here to attend, in person or online

Comparative Philology Seminar: Old High German and Germanic Reading Group

There are two opportunities this term to discuss medieval Germanic languages: the Comparative Philology Graduate Seminar and the Germanic Reading Group.

Comparative Philology Seminar: Old High German

We will present general aspects of the language and delve into specialist topics. All are welcome, basic linguistic knowledge is assumed. The seminar will take place on Tuesdays in weeks 2–8, 2.15–4 pm, at the Lecture Theatre of the Centre for Linguistics and Philology (Walton Street). Convenor: Dr Howard Jones

24 January      Introduction/Phonology (Luise Morawetz/Howard Jones)

31 January      Nominal morphology (Will Thurlwell)

7 February      Verb morphology (Luise Morawetz/Howard Jones)

14 February    Syntax (Howard Jones)

21 February    Lexis (Will Thurlwell)

28 February    Metre (Nelson Goering)

7 March          The place of OHG (and Old Saxon) among the Germanic languages (Patrick Stiles)

Germanic Reading Group

We’ll be holding four online meetings of the Germanic Reading Group this term, every other Thursday at 4:00 starting second Week in Oxford.

Thursday, 26 January, 4:00─5:00. Old Norse skaldic verse (Nelson Goering leading)

Thursday, 9 February, 4:00─5:00. Old High German charms (Will Thurlwell leading)

Thursday, 23 February, 4:00─5:00. Medieval Yiddish (Kerstin Hoge leading)

Thursday, 9 March, 4:00─5:00. Old High German glosses and glossaries (Luise Morawetz leading)

Please contact Howard Jones Howard.Jones@sbs.ox.ac.uk to be added to the list

Image: OHG Paternoster, St. Gallen, Stiftsbibliothek, Cod. Sang. 56, p. 68 – Evangelienharmonie des Tatian (https://www.e-codices.ch/de/list/one/csg/0056)

Medieval Matters: Week 1

Welcome back to Oxford, and to Hilary term! I hope that you all had a peaceful and enjoyable vac, and are returning to Oxford well rested and ready for an exciting and busy term. Since many of you have newly returned to Oxford, here is some wisdom for Alcuin about returning:

ex pietatis vestre apicibus audita prosperitate itineris vestri atque reversionis in patriam … toto cordis affectu animoque letissimo gratis egi
[Hearing from your letter of your successful journey and your return to our country … I gave heartfelt and joyful thanks, Ep. 190]

To welcome you all back, we have a new medieval booklet for Hilary 2023: please find a pdf copy attached to this week’s email, and a high-quality version on our website here. We also have a special blog post by Laure Miolo, who has the honour of giving the first medievalist paper of the term, at the Seminar in Manuscript Studies and Palaeography, today at 2.15-3.45pm! To read more about Laure’s paper, see the blog post.

Please note also that this week’s Medieval Church and Culture Seminar, on Tuesday 5pm, Harris Manchester College, is a special medievalist social! Please do come along to enjoy tea, coffee, biscuits, and a chance to catch up / advertise your seminars and events! All very welcome.

Please see below for full details of the week’s events:

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • Workshop: Staging a Medieval Mystery Play: On Friday 3 February 2023 (Week 3), 5–6.30pm, at St Edmund Hall, Old Dining Hall (postponed from 20 January). Join this workshop for tips and guidance on how to adapt medieval mystery plays for modern performance or if you are just interested in taking part in some form and shape. The workshop will be led by David Wiles, Emeritus Professor of Drama at the University of Exeter and a veteran director of the Oxford Medieval Mystery Cycle. Let us know if you’re interested in joining by emailing Michael Angerer, the graduate convenor. Meanwhile, we’re still looking for groups to join the Medieval Mystery Cycle: have a look at the original blog post with the sign-up link!
  • Save the Date! The Oxford Medieval Graduate Conference 2023 will take place on 20th-21st April at Ertegun House and online. For more details, visit oxgradconf.wixsite.com/omgc or follow @OxMedGradConf on twitter.
  • The Oxford Interfaith Forum runs its signature Thematic International Interfaith Groups, and our several groups, such as Manuscripts in Interfaith Context, Sacred Literature in Interfaith Contexts, Mysticism in Interfaith Contexts, Eastern Christianity in Interfaith Contexts, etc. Events organised by these groups might be of interest to the Medieval Studies Network, e.g. the Psalms in Interfaith Context Series. The full details of our past and upcoming events are available on our website, or follow us on Twitter at @FaithsOxford.
  • The OMS Small Grants Hilary Term Applications are now open! The TORCH Oxford Medieval Studies Programme invites applications for small grants to support conferences, workshops, and other forms of collaborative research activity organised by researchers at postgraduate (whether MSt or DPhil) or early-career level from across the Humanities Division at the University of Oxford. For full details, please see our blog post.

EVENTS THIS WEEK:

Monday 16th January:

  • The Medieval Latin Manuscript Reading Group led by Matthew Holford and Andrew Dunning is meeting as usual via Teams from 1-2pm. We’ll start this term continuing the natural history theme with another text on elephants, this time from the encyclopaedia of Thomas of Cantimpre (1201-?1272), De naturis rerum. We’ll read it from a 14th-century copy now in Bruges Public Library, https://sharedcanvas.be/IIIF/viewer/mirador/B_OB_MS412, with the text starting on fol. 61v. Sign up for the mailing list to receive updates and the Teams invite, or contact matthew.holford@bodleian.ox.ac.uk or andrew.dunning@bodleian.ox.ac.uk for more information. 
  • The Seminar in Manuscript Studies and Palaeography will take place at 2.15-3.45pm, in the Weston Library, Horton Room. This week’s speaker will be Laure Miolo (University of Oxford), “Astronomy and astrology in fourteenth-century Oxford: MS. Digby 176  in context“. For further information contact matthew.holford@bodleian.ox.ac.uk or andrew.dunning@bodleian.ox.ac.uk
  • The Medieval History Seminar takes place at 5pm in the Wharton Room, All Souls College and on Teams (Teams link here). This week’s speaker will be Lorenzo Caravaggi (University of East Anglia), ‘Magic Saracen treasures, credulous merchants, and other stories: itinerant notaries and their “judicial novellas” in fourteenth-century Italy.’. The Teams session can be accessed by logging in to Teams with your .ox.ac.uk account and joining the group “Medieval History Research Seminar” (team code rmppucs). If you have any difficulties please email: medhistsem@history.ox.ac.uk 

Tuesday 17th January:

  • The Europe in the Later Middle Ages Seminar will take place at 2–3.30pm in the New Seminar Room, St John’s College. Tea and coffee available from 1.45pm. This week’s speaker will be Christopher Fletcher, CNRS, Lille, ‘The politics and anti-politics of labour in late medieval England‘.
  • The Medieval Church and Culture Seminar meets at 5-6pm in the Charlese Wellbeloved Room, Harris Manchester College. This week’s meeting is a special medievalist social! Come along for tea, coffee, biscuits and a chance to share ongoing research, catch up informally, and give suggestions for themes and speakers in coming terms. All are welcome.

Wednesday 18th January:

  • The Medieval German Graduate Seminar will meet at 11:15am in the island room of Oriel College for a short organisational meeting on this term’s text, Heinrich von Neustadt’s Apollonius von Tyrland. If you are interested, contact Henrike Lähnemann, to be added to the teams chat.
  • The Medieval Italian Seminar will take place at 2pm at Rees Davies Room, History Faculty. This week’s speaker will be Chris Wickham (Oxford, All Souls/ History Faculty): ‘Governing twelfth-century city communes’.
  • GLARE (Greek and Latin Reading Group) takes place at 4-5pm at Jesus College. Please meet at Jesus College Lodge. This week’s text will be Cicero, Letters to Atticus. All welcome to attend any and all sessions. For more details and specific readings each week, or to be added to the mailing list, email john.colley@jesus.ox.ac.uk or jenyth.evans@seh.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval Latin Document Reading Group meets on Teams at 4-5pm. We are currently focusing on medieval documents from New College’s archive as part of the cataloguing work being carried out there, so there will be a variety of hands, dates and types. A document is sent out in advance but homework is not expected. Contact Michael Stansfield (michael.stansfield@new.ox.ac.uk) for further details and the Teams link.
  • The Late Antique and Byzantine Seminar takes place at 5pm at the Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St Giles and online via Teams. This week’s speaker will be Joshua Hitt (St Hilda’s College), ‘The Poetics of Age in Twelfth-Century Byzantine Literature’. Teams: Click here to join the meeting.
  • The Medieval English Research Seminar takes place at 5.15pm in Lecture Theatre 2, English Faculty. This week’s paper will be followed by a special drinks reception to celebrate recent book publications. This week’s speaker will be Luisa Ostacchini (University of Oxford), ‘After Dido: Carthage in Old English Literature’. All welcome.
  • CfP: The Medieval Church: From Margins to Centre (26-27 June 2023): This conference aims to consider the relationship between the Church and the marginalised in medieval society – minority genders and sexualities, racial minorities, disabled people, non-Christians, and the poor. The conference is prompted by current trends in medieval race studies, trans studies and disability studies, and aims to provide a particular platform for postgraduate and early career researchers who work in these areas. To support this aim, we plan to offer a bursary of £30 per person for up to 10 postgraduates and ECRs. Please send abstracts of up to 250 words to Tim Wingard (tim.wingard@york.ac.uk) by no later than 5pm on Sunday 5 February 2023. For more information, see the website here.

Friday 20th January:

  • The Anglo-Norman Reading Group meets at 5-6.30pm at St Hilda’s College, in the Julia Mann Room. The text will be extracts from the Chronicle of Langtoft; pdf will be provided. For access to the text and further information, please email: stephanie.hathaway@gmail.com or jane.bliss@lmh.oxon.org.
  • The Old Norse Reading Group meets at 5pm at The Royal Oak. Please email Ashley Castelino (ashley.castelino@lincoln.ox.ac.uk) to be added to the mailing list.

OPPORTUNITIES:

  • CFP: Old Norse Poetry in Performance: Inheritance and Innovation. Following its covid-induced hiatus, the third iteration of the triennial Old Norse Poetry in Performance conference will take place at St Hugh’s College, Oxford, on the 21st and 22nd of June 2023. This conference will maintain the format of its previous iterations, showcasing academic research, practical performances, and the possibilities offered by combining the two. The organisers invite proposals for 20-minute papers and/or performances. Proposals should be no more than 300 words and should be sent to oldnorsepoetryinperformance@gmail.com, accompanied by a brief biographical note, by midnight on 17th February 2023. For full details, see the blog post.
  • Workshop on manuscript description and cataloguing: This workshop, to be held over 3-4 weeks in the second half of term, is intended for postgraduate students working on Western medieval manuscript/s in the Bodleian Library who would like, as a by-product of their research, to produce formal catalogue description/s for publication on Medieval Manuscripts in Oxford Libraries. Please express interest using this form.
  • Teaching with manuscripts: Thinking of incorporating medieval manuscript material in your teaching but not sure where to start? Sign up for a workshop with Andrew Dunning and Matthew Holford, curators at the Bodleian Library, where we will try to answer your questions and lead a discussion on what does and doesn’t work when teaching with manuscripts. Please sign up using this form. We will hold one or more workshops (depending on interest) early in term.
  • The Latin Works of Piccolomini (Pius II): A Colloquium: Registration is now open for this colloquium, taking place on Thurs. 23–Fri. 24 March 2023 at the Faculty of Classics, Oxford in collaboration with the Abteilung für Griechische und Lateinische Philologie at Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität, Bonn. More information and the link to register here.
  • CFP: Bristol CMS Postgraduate Conference, IDENTITIES, COMMUNITIES AND ‘IMAGINED COMMUNITIES’, 14-15 April 2023. We welcome abstracts from postgraduates and early-career researchers, exploring all the aspects and approaches to concepts of identity and communities, in all relevant disciplines pertaining to the medieval period, broadly construed c.500-c.1500. Abstracts are 300 words for 20-minute papers. This year’s conference will be a hybrid event online and on the campus of the University of Bristol. Abstracts and enquiries: cms-conferenceenquiries@bristol.ac.uk DEADLINE: 10 February 2023. For full details, see the blog post here.

Finally, some more wisdom from Alcuin:

novi rerum eventus novos iterum caritatis penna exarare meam devotionem apices exhortantur
[New events urge me to write anew in devotion with the pen of love, Ep. 156]

I’m delighted to be writing anew to you all with the week’s round-up of events, announcements and opportunities, and look forward to seeing you all throughout the term. Wishing you all a productive and enjoyable Hilary!

[Medievalists emerging from the Christmas Vac to peek at the first Medieval Matters of term]
Ashmole Bestiary, Bodleian Library MS. Ashmole 1511, f. 69 r.
Viewable in full at Digital Bodleian

OMCN Interdisciplinary Seminar Series 2023

The Oxford Medieval Commentary Network is delighted to announce an upcoming Seminar Series for Hilary Term 2023. We will welcome four distinguished speakers from different disciplines, who will share their insights into different aspects of the commentary tradition. Seminars will take place on Thursdays of weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, at the Thatched Barn at Christ Church. There will be a free lunch at 12.45pm, followed by a one-hour seminar 1.15-2.15pm. Further details below, and on our website.

Remembering Medieval Memory Experts

The end of the year and the start of a new one traditionally are opportunities for remembering the time that has passed. For medieval holy women, too, memory mattered. In fact, medieval holy women were experts in remembering the year round, being trained in memoria, the art of memory. In particular, their minds were saturated with sensory memories of the liturgy: the sights, sounds, smells, movements and other sensations of the Divine Office and the Mass, which they shared with their communities, crowded their minds. My MSCA-IF project “Women Making Memories: Liturgy and the Remembering Female Body in Medieval Holy Women’s Texts”, hosted by the Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages, investigated how texts by medieval women appropriate the memoria taught by the liturgy, and scrutinized the significance of the body, senses, and gender play in these transformations. (This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 842443.)

“Historiated initial of a nun”. Detail from London, British Library, Sloane 2468, fol. 227v. England, c. 1420.

Begun in September 2019 and concluded on 31 December 2022, this project was the first academic project to juxtapose female-authored texts in different north-western European vernaculars. It compared six vernacular (auto)biographies and visionary texts in Middle Dutch, Middle English, and Middle High and Low German. They date from 1300 to 1500 and originate from the European regions now known as the Netherlands (the Diepenveen sister-book, in Middle Dutch), Belgium (Jacomijne Costers’ and Mechtild van Rieviren’s visions, referred to in this study as the Facons revelations), Germany (the Medingen prayerbook), Switzerland (the Sister-book of St Katharinental), and the United Kingdom (Julian of Norwich’ A Revelation of Love, and The Book of Margery Kempe). Medieval culture saw memory predominantly as a generative faculty designed to fashion new discourses and identities, akin to modern imagination. This blogpost therefore summarizes what medieval women want us to remember, linking to the project publications that detail these findings.

In direct response to the pandemic, my project shifted towards examining how medieval women negotiated trauma by means of the liturgy, and we will therefore see that medieval women deployed memory to envision different (post-pandemic) futures.

The Middle Dutch sister-Book under discussion, compiled by Griet Essinghes. Deventer, Deventer Library, MS 101 E 26 KL, fol. 111v-112r. The Low Countries, 1524.

In this liturgical memoria, placing memories somewhere liturgical was key. Their texts were informed by the physical places in which medieval holy women remembered and the mental “places” (loci, particular locations in their “memory palaces”) with which they remembered. In texts by and for anchorites, individuals living confined to little rooms attached to parish churches, the anchoritic cell provides a powerful interpretative structure for memories of particular sins and physical and mental health complaints associated with anchoritism. In some texts, the cell as physical space and as locus predisposes the anchorite and reader towards penitential practices to both combat these sins and increase these complaints, making this feedback loop reinforce itself more. In A Revelation of Love, however, the cell reframes these memories, transfiguring them into reminders of spiritual homesickness for a space beyond the cell rather than of essential sinfulness contained by the cell.

A reconstruction of Julian of Norwich’s cell at St Julian’s in Norwich. Photo: Godelinde Gertrude Perk

Painful memories can haunt individuals and communities, as medieval holy women were well aware. The Facons revelations and the Diepenveen sister-book both recount the tragic losses to these religious communities during the Bubonic plague, even weaponizing the painful sensory impressions of this pandemic to exhort the nuns to pray for the continued survival of the community. (A similar strategy animates the St Katharinental’s attempts to remember the souls of the departed more generally.) In chronicling medieval bodily suffering, however, these texts composed by women also bear witness to the corporate trauma of these female communities and tentatively gesture to potential avenues towards integrating these memories into new ones of communal worship. Texts from medieval female religious communities thus anxiously harmonize the shriek of trauma into a single communal voice, singing.

“Geertruy Haeck Kneeling in Prayer before Saint Agnes”, c. 1465, Low Countries, https://www.rijksmuseum.nl/en/collection/SK-A-3926.

Finally, these women’s memoria point to shared texts and shared embodied experiences weaving shared memories, even when the persons remembering are separated in time and/or space. The project’s nuns from the German-speaking lands and the Low Countries lived a century apart, while the Channel divided Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe from their Continental peers. Nevertheless, all of these holy women contemplated the mnemonic image of Christ’s suffering body as indelibly engraved upon their minds by the liturgy of Holy Week and spun new memories out of this common memory. Many of them, too, drew on the attitude (intentiones) of joy that pervaded Easter chants or lessons in which Sapientia, a female personification of God’s wisdom, rejoices in dwelling among humanity to celebrate the charity between their fellow religious or between human beings. Memory translates the liturgy into love.

In sum, this project has shown that the medieval art of memory helped (re)build communities and fostered compassion. Ultimately, “Women Making Memories” has not only demonstrated medieval women’s essential contributions to Europe’s literary and spiritual legacy, but also their boundless resilience, which can inspire beyond linguistic, religious, and national boundaries.

This article results from “Women Making Memories: Liturgy and the Remembering Female Body in Medieval Holy Women’s Texts,” Godelinde Gertrude Perk’s MSCA-IF project at the Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages at the University of Oxford. This project received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 842443.

ETC seminar – Medieval Commentaries on Vergil

Dear All,

The final session of the Early Text Cultures Seminar on Pre-modern Commentaries will take place on Wednesday 30 November at Corpus Christi College, Seminar Room, 2-3pm. Vittorio Danovi (Oxford) will give a talk titled

Medieval Commentaries on Vergil (Bern scholia and Servius Auctus)

My research is primarily concerned with the commentary on Vergil’s Eclogues and Georgics known as Bern scholia and with the augmented version of Servius’ commentary on the whole of Vergil known, after its first editor Pierre Daniel, as Seruius Danielis or DS scholia. Both commentaries were probably assembled in seventh-century (Insular?) scriptoria by anonymous compilers who resorted to pre-existing commentaries, but almost all their extant witnesses date back to the Carolingian period. I am currently aiming to analyse the characters of the different versions of the Bern and DS scholia transmitted by each witness and to establish their genealogical relationships. On these grounds, I hope to shed some new light on the Carolingian engagement with the two commentaries.

Please do come in person! But if you cannot, here is a Zoom link to attend remotely:

Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/94503373094?pwd=RFVCaXpDNlNjN2dROVR0a1lIUS9uUT09

Meeting ID: 945 0337 3094
Passcode: 581504

All best wishes,
ETC Board

Medieval Matters: Week 8

Here we are at the end of term! Last Friday was Oxmas, traditionally celebrated one month before Christmas Day to allow us to spread some festive cheer before term ends. I’m sure this week will be filled with festive celebrations. If you are about to embark upon Christmas shopping, you might be struggling to find the perfect gift. Fear not: Alcuin also struggled with this dilemma…

Diu deliberans, quid mentis meae devotio ad splendorem imperialis potentiae vestrae atque augmentum opolentissimi thesauri vestri muneris condignum reperire potuisset – ne ingeniolum animi mei, aliis diversa divitiarum dona offerentibus, otio torpuisset inani, et vacuis manibus parvitatis meae missus ante faciem beatudinis vestrae venisset.
[I have long deliberated over what I might consider a worthy gift for the brilliance of your imperial power and for the increase of your most opulent treasury, lest my mind might have grown slothful through the holiday and through idleness, and my messenger appear before you with empty hands whilst others were offering various gifts of riches, Ep. 205]

I have been wondering long and hard what “gifts” to offer you at the end of term, and hope that this seasonal and lengthier than usual quotation might suffice! I didn’t want to come to your inbox empty-handed since others are offering various gifts of great riches this week, from a special lecture by Professor Gordon Noble on Tuesday, to the final chance to see the exhibition of Violent Victorian Medievalism in person in the Taylorian on Friday. See below for a round-up of all of the diversa divitiarum dona on offer this week.

And a reminder: We are still looking for takers for plays for the Medieval Mystery Cycle on 22 April 2023. Full information here on how to propose a play – and do get in contact with Michael Angerer or Henrike Lähnemann if you have any questions. There will be a workshop for anybody considering taking part in early Hilary Term!

ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Remember to sign up for the Medieval Mystery Cycle! As play proposals are starting to trickle in, don’t miss your chance to join this unique bit of medieval fun. We will be offering a workshop on cutting play scripts at St Edmund Hall on Friday 20 January 2023, open to all potential directors. You can find more information, as well as the sign-up link, on our blog post.

EVENTS THIS WEEK

Monday 28th November:

  • The Byzantine Graduate Seminar takes place at 12.30-2pm online via Zoom. This week’s speaker will be İrem Kısacık (İstanbul Medeniyet University), Emotions in Late Antiquity. To register, please contact the organiser at james.cogbill@worc.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval Latin Manuscript Reading Group led by Matthew Holford, Andrew Dunning, and Tuija Ainonen is meeting as usual via Teams from 1-2pm.
  • The Medieval Archaeology Seminar takes place at 3pm in the Institute of Archaeology, Lecture Room. This week’s speaker will be Jane Kershaw, ‘A Viking winter camp in Northumberland? Ongoing work in the Coquet valley‘.
  • The Queer and Trans Medievalisms Reading Group meets at 3pm at Univ College, 12 Merton St Room 2. This week’s theme is The trial of Joan of Arc. All extremely welcome! To join the mailing list and get texts in advance, or if you have any questions, email rowan.wilson@univ.ox.ac.uk.  
  • The Medieval History Seminar takes place at 5pm in the Wharton Room, All Souls College and on Teams (Teams link here). This week’s speaker will be Robert Wiśniewski (Warsaw): ‘‘Avoid undue leaps’. Clerical career paths in Late Antiquity’. The Teams session can be accessed by logging in to Teams with your .ox.ac.uk account and joining the group “Medieval History Research Seminar” (team code rmppucs). If you have any difficulties please email: medhistsem@history.ox.ac.uk 
  • The Old English Reading Group takes place at 5.30-7.30pm. Please email grace.oduffy@sjc.ox.ac.uk for more information and to be added to the mailing list.

Tuesday 29th November:

  • The Medieval English Research Seminar takes place at 12.15pm in Lecture Theatre 2, English Faculty. This week’s speaker will be Rhiannon Purdie (St Andrews),  ‘Synchronic histories of Older Scots Literature: the rewards and challenges of reconstruction’. The paper will be followed by lunch with the speaker. All welcome.
  • GLARE (Greek and Latin Reading Group) takes place at 4-5pm at Harold Wilson Room, Jesus College. Please meet at Jesus College Lodge. This week’s text will be Pseudo-Seneca, Octavia. All welcome to attend any and all sessions. For more details and specific readings each week, or to be added to the mailing list, email john.colley@jesus.ox.ac.uk or jenyth.evans@seh.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval Church and Culture Seminar takes place at 5pm at Charles Wellbeloved Room, Harris Manchester College. The theme for this term is ‘Women’. This week’s speaker will be Delfi Nieto-Isabel (Queen Mary University of London): Connecting the Dots:  heresy, inquisitors and invisible women. Everyone is welcome at this informal and friendly graduate seminar.
  • The Codicology and History of the Book Seminar is hosting a Welcome Evening for Oxford DPhil Students at 6-8pm, in the Blackwell Hall, Weston Library. For further details, email bookcentre@bodleian.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Early Medieval Britain and Ireland Network will host a lecture by Dr Gordon Noble, Professor of Archaeology at the University of Aberdeen. His talk, entitled ‘Discovering the Northern Picts,’ will discuss some of the significant discoveries of the award-winning Northern Picts excavations and what these findings mean for Pictish society ca 300-900 AD. The talk will take place at 7:00 PM at Worcester College in the Linbury Room. All are very welcome to attend. Any queries, please contact Meredith Cutrer at meredith.cutrer@worc.ox.ac.uk.

Wednesday 30th November:

  • The Medieval German Graduate Seminar this week does not meet on Wednesday but rather on Friday, 3pm (see below) for a paper by Dr Pia Selmayr. If you want to be added to the medieval German mailing list, please contact Henrike Lähnemann.
  • The Medieval Latin Document Reading Group meets on Teams at 4-5pm. We are currently focusing on medieval documents from New College’s archive as part of the cataloguing work being carried out there, so there will be a variety of hands, dates and types. A document is sent out in advance but homework is not expected. Contact Michael Stansfield (michael.stansfield@new.ox.ac.uk) for further details and the Teams link.
  • The Late Antique and Byzantine Seminar takes place at 5pm at the Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St Giles. This week’s speaker will be Michael Jeffreys (Oxford), Imperial ceremonies away from the Great Palace, 1148-1159: the evidence of Manganeios Prodromos.

Thursday 1st December:

  • The Old French Reading Group takes place at 4pm at St Hilda’s College (meet by the lodge) in association with Oxford Medieval Studies, sponsored by The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH). We welcome readers of Old French of all abilities. For further information, please email alice.hawkins@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk or irina.boeru@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk
  • The Digital Humanities and Sensory Heritage (DHSH) – Seminar Series will meet at 4.30pm in the Linbury Room, Worcester College. The speaker will be Jean-Philippe Échard (Paris), Materiality-driven Digital Approaches to Music Museum Artefacts: from Spectro-imaging and CT Scans, to Photogrammetry. All welcome! For more information, click here.
  • The Seminar in Medieval and Renaissance Music will take place on Zoom at 5pm. This week’s speaker will be David Burn (University of Leuven): Sixteenth-Century Symbola. If you are planning to attend a seminar this term, please register using this form. For each seminar, those who have registered will receive an email with the Zoom invitation and any further materials a couple of days before the seminar. If you have questions, please just send me an email (matthew.thomson@ucd.ie).
  • The Oxford Medieval Visual Culture Seminar will take place at 5pm in St Catherine’s College, Arumugam Building. This week’s speaker will be Julian Luxford University of St Andrews, The iconography of the Mass of St Gregory in England.
  • The Celtic Seminar will take place at 5pm, online via Zoom. This week’s speaker will be Dewi Alter, ‘Darllen y tir yn iawn: Mannau’r cof yn Drych y Prif Oesoedd‘. Please contact a.elias@wales.ac.uk for the link.

Friday 2nd December:

  • The Medievalist Coffee Morning takes place at 10:30-11.30am in the Visiting Scholars Centre in the Weston Library (access via the Readers Entrance on Museum Road: straight ahead and up two floors!). This is a perfect opportunity to see treasures of the Bodleian, go up to the roof terrace, pick the brains of other medievalists and, of course, drink coffee.

Finally, some wisdom from Alcuin on the joy of gifts:

Licet nullius nunc mens mea desideret munuscula propter animi mei requiem, tua tamen mihi sunt semper dulcia.
[Although my mind now desires nothing because of the peace of my spirit, your gifts are always sweet to me, Ep. 189.]

In other words, no matter how peaceful your spirit, it’s always nice to get a present! I hope that your last week is filled with sweet gifts! I will be back in your inboxes briefly next week with a Christmas email to finish off the term.

[A Medievalist finds the perfect sweet gift for a friend]
Ashmole Bestiary, Bodleian Library MS. Ashmole 1511, f. 60 v.
Viewable in full at Digital Bodleian

Medieval Matters: Week 7

It’s only November, but the Oxford Christmas lights are up, and the Christmas market has come to Broad Street! It strikes me as a little early for Christmas celebrations just yet, particularly as we still have two whole weeks of term. Here is some advice from Alcuin on not getting ahead of ourselves:

Omnia vestra honeste cum ordine fiant. Tempus statuatur lectioni.
[Do all of your tasks decently and in order. Fix a time for reading, Ep. 72]

Of course, as well as fixing reading time, you should also fix time to attend some of our wonderful range of events. To help you keep your diary decently and in order, please see below for a list of the week’s happenings:

EVENTS THIS WEEK:

Monday 21st November:

  • The Medieval Latin Manuscript Reading Group led by Matthew Holford, Andrew Dunning, and Tuija Ainonen is meeting as usual via Teams on Mondays from 1-2pm, continuing with the Ashmole bestiary (MS. Ashmole 1511), picking up after the Elephant on f. 16r, line 6.
  • The Byzantine Graduate Seminar takes place at 12.30-2pm online via Zoom. This week’s speaker will be Bahattin Bayram (İstanbul Medeniyet University), Barbarians of Eusebius. To register, please contact the organiser at james.cogbill@worc.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval History Seminar takes place at 5pm in the Wharton Room, All Souls College and on Teams (Teams link here). This week’s speaker will be Barbara Bombi (Kent), ‘Lost in translation: diplomacy and the use of languages at the papal curia in Avignon’. The Teams session can be accessed by logging in to Teams with your .ox.ac.uk account and joining the group “Medieval History Research Seminar” (team code rmppucs). If you have any difficulties please email: medhistsem@history.ox.ac.uk 
  • The Old Norse Reading Group meets at 5.30-7.30pm. Please email Ashley Castelino (ashley.castelino@lincoln.ox.ac.uk) to be added to the mailing list.

Tuesday 22nd November:

  • Workshop: Visual search for exploring and dating collections: lessons from Spanish chapbooks will take place at 09:30-11:30am online and in Cambridge. This workshop will explore the challenges and opportunities that using digital tools can bring to the study of large collections of images and their associated metadata. Registration required: https://www.cdh.cam.ac.uk/events/35527/
  • The Medieval English Research Seminar takes place at 12.15pm in Lecture Theatre 2, English Faculty. This week’s speaker will be Eleanor Myerson (Cambridge), ‘Syrian Silks: The Fabrics of English Identity‘. The paper will be followed by lunch with the speaker. All welcome.
  • GLARE (Greek and Latin Reading Group) takes place at 4-5pm at Harold Wilson Room, Jesus College. Please meet at Jesus College Lodge. This week’s text will be Sophocles, Iphigenia at Taurus. All welcome to attend any and all sessions. For more details and specific readings each week, or to be added to the mailing list, email john.colley@jesus.ox.ac.uk or jenyth.evans@seh.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval French Research Seminar takes place at 5pm at the Maison française d’Oxford (www.mfo.ac.uk). Presentations begin at 5.15pm. This week’s speaker will be Dr Melek Karatas (John Rylands Library, Manchester): ‘Makers of Manuscripts as Readers of Manuscripts: The Montbaston Illuminators and the Roman de la Rose’. For more information and to be added on the seminar’s mailing list, contact sophie.marnette@balliol.ox.ac.uk 
  • The Medieval Church and Culture Seminar takes place at 5pm at Charles Wellbeloved Room, Harris Manchester College. The theme for this term is ‘Women’. This week’s speaker will be Elena Rossi (Magdalen): Our Mother the University: maternal roles and the medieval university. Everyone is welcome at this informal and friendly graduate seminar.
  • A network social for Early Medieval Britain and Ireland network will take place at 6:00 PM at the King’s Arms. Anyone with an interest in early medieval Britain and Ireland is most welcome. 

Wednesday 23rd November:

  • The Medieval German Graduate Seminar meets for a paper by Ruth von Bernuth and Henrike Lähnemann on the Yiddish and German versions of ‘Sigenot’ as part of the ‘Dietrichsepik’ seminar at 11:15am in Somerville College – ask at the Lodge for directions. If you want to be added to the medieval German mailing list, please contact Henrike Lähnemann.
  • The Medieval Latin Document Reading Group meets on Teams at 4-5pm. We are currently focusing on medieval documents from New College’s archive as part of the cataloguing work being carried out there, so there will be a variety of hands, dates and types. A document is sent out in advance but homework is not expected. Contact Michael Stansfield (michael.stansfield@new.ox.ac.uk) for further details and the Teams link.
  • The Late Antique and Byzantine Seminar takes place at 5pm at the Ioannou Centre for Classical and Byzantine Studies, 66 St Giles. This week’s speaker will be Liz James (Univ. of Sussex), Connecting Mosaics.
  • The Centre for Manuscript and Text Cultures meets at 5.15pm in Memorial Room, The Queen’s College and on Zoom for the Michaelmas Term CMTC Lecture. The lecture will be Nikolay Tarasenko (Kyiv/Pembroke College, Oxford): ‘What Can the “Greenfield Papyrus” (pLondon BM EA 10554) Tell Us about Its Owner?’. Please register here (whether you are planning to attend in person or online).

Thursday 24th November:

  • The Celtic Seminar will take place at 5.15pm via Zoom and The History of the Book Room, English Faculty. This week’s speaker will be Myriah Williams (Berkeley): ‘Beginnings and endings: ‘Moli Duw yn Nechrau a Diwedd and Cyntefin Ceinaf Amser’‘. Please contact david.willis@jesus.ox.ac.uk if you need a link.

Friday 25th November:

  • The Medievalist Coffee Morning takes place at 10:30-11.30am in the Visiting Scholars Centre in the Weston Library (access via the Readers Entrance on Museum Road: straight ahead and up two floors!).
  • The Anglo-Norman Reading Group meets at 5-6.30pm at St Hilda’s College, in the Julia Mann Room. The text will be extracts from the Chronicle of Langtoft; pdf will be provided. For access to the text and further information, please email: stephanie.hathaway@mod-langs.ox.ac.uk or jane.bliss@lmh.oxon.org.

OPPORTUNITIES:

  • Oxford Research in English: Call for submissions: ORE invites papers on the theme of ‘conversations’, across all periods, genres, and literary disciplines. We invite full papers of 5,000-8,000 words, due on the 6th of January 2023 to ore@ell.ox.ac.uk. All questions and queries should also be submitted to this email address. The editors also invite expressions of interest for book reviews and feature articles. For full details, please see here.

Finally, for anyone eagerly looking forward to the Christmas season, when things are not so busy: some advice from Alcuin on enjoying the present and not hoping too much for the future (even when you are very busy with admissions or MSt essay writing):

Tempus huius vitae velociter currit… ideo pretiosa nobis debent esse tempora
[This life passes quickly… so we should hold our time as precious, Ep. 78]

In other words, enjoy the last couple of weeks of term. May you have a week filled with precious times!

[A Medievalist tries to focus on their work and not on the Broad Street Christmas market…]
Ashmole Bestiary, Bodleian Library MS. Ashmole 1511, f. 95 v.
Viewable in full at Digital Bodleian