Oxford Medieval Studies Week 6 Trinity Term 2020

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Dear Medievalists,


So far this term, I’ve been able to listen to some brilliant talks with the window open, the blackbirds singing and a cup of tea. As week 6 rolls in it’s starting to feel like normal. I hope wherever you are and however you get to tune into these talks you get some joy out of them.

Next week, we’re delighted that Tobias Capwell will be giving the Oxford Medieval Studies Trinity Term Lecture on the 9th of June. Tobias will be speaking about ‘Armour and the Knight in Life and Afterlife’. This promises to be a lot of fun. I will send around a link to everything later in the week so you will all be able to join us.



  • First up today (1st) we have the Old English Work-in-Progress Meeting at 4pm, which takes place via OMS Teams. This afternoon Caroline Batten will be talking about ‘Charms and Riddles: Moving beyond Sound and Sense’.
  • Then at 5pm today, the Medieval History Seminar is back with Lucia Akard and Alice Raw discussing ‘Medieval Consent: New Methods and Approaches’. If you are a member of the seminar’s Teams, you can access the handout on their channel, and then log onto the discussion at 5pm, by clicking here.
  • The Early Slavonic Seminar meets at 5pm on Tuesday (2nd), and this week Don Ostrowski will ask ‘Who Wrote the Povest’ vremennykh let?’. You can join in the discussion via Zoom by registering and clicking here.
  • We are delighted to say that Medieval Church and Culture is back until the end of term, when we will be hosting this year’s MSt Medieval Studies students to discuss the research they’ve been doing (as is traditional for MCC in Trinity Term). This week we have two speakers: Sarah Blenko asks the question 'Why list books? Excavating the multifunctionality of late medieval British booklists' and Edward Roger will be discussing 'The Libro de Ajedrez: A Study of Chess-Playing as Illustrated by Alfonso X of Spain. You can join us on OMS Teams by clicking here at 5pm on Tuesday.
  • The Graduate Seminar in Medieval German continues to engage with Meister Eckhart’s sermons on Freedom. You can join them by emailing Henrike.laehnemann@mod-langs.ox.ac.uk. The seminar meets on Wednesday (3rd) at 11.15am.
  • Later on Wednesday at 4pm, the Middle English Work-in-Progress seminar meets when Hannah Schuhle-Lewis and Cosima Gillhammer will consider Aspects of Middle English Bible Scholarship. You can join them via the OMS Teams channel.

Reading Groups

  • The Old Norse Reading Group is back this week, and meeting via OMS Teams today at 5.30pm. For more information get in touch with William.brockbank@jesus.ox.ac.uk.
  • The Medieval Book Club continue with their theme of Travel this week when they traverse all three levels of Dante’s universe (Inferno 17, Purgatorio 17, and Paradiso 17). As always, they meet on Tuesday at 3.30pm via their channel on OMS Teams.

Other News

The British Archaeological Association have issued a call for papers for their Post-Graduate Conference. It will take place on the 28th November in London and may be online or be in person depending on…well…everything. Either way, it’s a great society and promises to be a very welcoming event, so do check it out. I’ve attached more details.


One of the best things this term has been the wonderful short writing for the OMS Blogs. We have three more this week. Llewelyn Hopwood has written a beautiful piece on medieval soundscapes. It’s got owls! Hannah Skoda gives us five ‘Best Books on the Middle Ages’. Finally, Luise Morawetz discusses the process of making paper at home. As always, we are looking for more ideas, so do get in touch if you’d like to contribute.