LMS Interdisciplinary Research Seminar, PIMS, 4 March, 3:10 p.m.

You are cordially invited to attend the first LMS Interdisciplinary Research Seminar at the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020
3:10 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Room A, PIMS
59 Queen’s Park Crescent East

Policing Sanctuary in Medieval English Cities

Abstract (Duggan)

Presented by:

Dr. Kenneth F. Duggan
Mellon Fellow and LMS Candidate

This paper will discuss the use and abuse of sanctuary in thirteenth-century England, with a particular focus on the cities of London and Lincoln. It will also discuss how those who lived in cities might have felt that policing sanctuaries was more difficult in urban centres than it was in rural England. In doing so, this paper will demonstrate how those who lived in cities expected justices to be more lenient when it came to collective penalties levied against them for failures in peacekeeping duties that related to criminal cases involving fugitives who fled to sanctuary.

J.R. O’Donnell Memorial Lecture with Professor Francesco Stella, 5 March, 4:10 pm

The Centre for Medieval Studies cordially invites you to the 2019-2020 J.R. O’Donnell Memorial Lecture by:

Professor Francesco Stella
University of Siena

The Latin Lives of Mohamed


Thursday, 5 March 2020 at 4:10 p.m.

Centre for Medieval Studies, Room 301
Lillian Massey Building
University of Toronto
125 Queen’s Park, Toronto

Reception to follow.

CANCELLED – Lecture by Paul Saenger, 12 March, 4:10 pm

The Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies, the Centre for Comparative Literature,
the Centre for Medieval Studies,
& the Department for the Study of Religion cordially invite you to a lecture by

Paul Saenger
Curator of Rare Books Emeritus The Newberry Library, Chicago

“Jewish Confrontations with Christianity in the Middle Ages and the Origin of the Modern Mode of citing Sacred Scripture”

Introduction by Prof. Brian Stock

Paris Bibliothèque Saint-Geneviève ms 1405 f.205r

Paris Bibliothèque Saint-Geneviève ms 1405 f.205r

Thursday, 12 March 2020, 4:10 p.m.

Centre for Medieval Studies, Room 301 Lillian Massey Building

125 Queen’s Park

Small reception to follow

CANCELLED Lecture by the George Rigg Visitor in Medieval Latin: Professor Mark Vessey, 19 March, 4:10 pm

The Centre for Medieval Studies cordially invites you to a lecture by the George Rigg Visitor in Medieval Latin:

Professor Mark Vessey
Department of English, University of British Columbia
Principal of Green College

Rome’s Empire, Christianity, and the New Latin Book-Mind of the Early Western Middle Ages – Rethinking Literature and Textual Community

Mark Vessey JPEG

Thursday, 19 March 2020 at 4:10 pm

Centre for Medieval Studies, Room 301
Lilian Massey Building
University of Toronto
125 Queen’s Park, Toronto

CANCELLED Toronto Old English Colloquium, 27 March

The Centre for Medieval Studies, the Department of English, and St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto, cordially invite you to the Toronto Old English Colloquium:

Toronto Old English Colloquium 2020

Friday, March 27th, 2020

Irina Dumitrescu (Universität Bonn): “Andreas: The Source Awakens”
Chair: Antonette diPaolo Healey (University of Toronto)

Benjamin Saltzman (University of Chicago): “Secrets and Servitude in Riddles and the Law”
Chair: Stephen Pelle (University of Toronto)

Kaitlin Griggs (Carleton University): “Elizabeth Elstob and her Sources: Analyzing Similarities in Elstob’s and Ælfric’s Grammar Texts”
Samuel Cardwell (University of Toronto): “Contracting Marriages in Eleventh-Century England: Be wifmannes beweddung”
Alexandra Bauer (University of Toronto): “Heterotopia and the Old English Mary of Egypt”
Chair: Cameron Laird (University of Toronto)

Gregory Heyworth (University of Rochester): “Scoundrels and Scholars: Textual Science and the Story of the Vercelli Book”
Chair: Deanna Brook’s (University of Toronto)

Reception to follow. All are welcome.

The event will take place at the Centre for Medieval Studies, 125 Queen’s Park, Room 301.

Bravo to Eva Plesnick for her work on the Online American Dante Bibliography

Blake - Beatrice addressing Dante - cropped

The Dante Society of America (DSA) Bibliographic Committee has just announced the online publication of the American Dante Bibliography for 2018. The DSA Bibliographic Committee is grateful to the Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Toronto, for its generous support of this year’s bibliography, which was compiled by PhD student Eva Plesnik. According to the Committee, Eva did remarkable work.

The committee is composed of our colleague and CMS PhD coordinator Elisa Brilli (Chair of the committee and Bibliographer), William Caferro (Vanderbilt University), Anna Wainwright (University of New Hampshire), and Christian Dupont (Boston College; ex officio, as Secretary-Librarian).

The American Dante Bibliography for 2018 is available in downloadable PDF and Word formats as well as searchable and browsable HTML:


The bibliography is intended to include all publications relating to Dante (books, articles, translations, reviews) published in North America in 2018, including reviews published in North American journals of books published elsewhere.

The entries are also included in the comprehensive Bibliografia Dantesca Internazionale/International Dante Bibliography database, maintained by the Società Dantesca Italiana with the collaboration of the Dante Society of America since 2017. See: https://bibliografia.dantesca.it/.

Congratulations to Professor Audrey Walton, Polanyi Prize Winner for 2019

Audrey Walton has won a Polanyi Prize for 2019. These prestigious prizes recognize the innovative and ground-breaking work of five university researchers in Ontario and are awarded in honour of Ontario’s Nobel Prize winner John C. Polanyi, who won the 1986 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his research in chemical kinetics.

Professor Walton’s research examines the rise of vernacular literature in early medieval Europe and explains how the stages of this rise—transitioning from literature in Latin to literature written in local languages—unfolded in the British Isles.

She shows that even as early English speakers recognized the influence of Latin texts, they also promoted the production and preservation of literature in local languages. Owing to this emphasis on multilingualism in early medieval England, vernacular literature developed rapidly during the sixth through the twelfth centuries. Early formations of English vernacular literature in turn gave critical impetus to the spread of vernacular literature occurring throughout Europe.

Professor Walton’s work examines the poetry of the two earliest named poets in English literature, Caedmon and Cynewulf, alongside writings by monk and historian the Venerable Bede (known as the father of English history). She situates this work—alongside the work of many anonymous poets and historians—in the context of a long and dynamic tradition of early medieval English and Latin writing.

The project, under development as a book, shows how this formative period in English literature influenced the trajectory of later literary traditions. This work retraces and explores the varied networks, diverse points of contact, and paths of information that enabled literary conversation across national borders.

Lecture by François-Xavier Fauvelle, 20 February, 4:10 pm

The African Studies Program, the Centre for Medieval Studies, the Department of History, the Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, and the Institute of Islamic Studies cordially invite you to a lecture by

François-Xavier Fauvelle
Professor, Collège de France (Paris)

Africa and the Global Middle Ages:

Broker States, Articulated Cities, Ecological Thresholds”

Fauvelle lecture image
Map of the Oekumene drawn by the twelfth-century Arab geographer al-Idrîsî (copy by ‘Alî ibn-Hasan al Hûfî al-Qâsimî, Cairo, 1456; Oxford, Bodleian Library, Ms Pococke 375, fol. 3v-4)

Thursday, 20 February 2020, 4:10 p.m.

Centre for Medieval Studies, Room 301
Lillian Massey Building
125 Queen’s Park

Reception to follow

François-Xavier Fauvelle is an Africanist historian and archeologist. He is a professor at the Collège de France in Paris and, in 2020, at Princeton University. He is a former director of the French Centre for Ethiopian Studies in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and for the past decade has led the French-Moroccan excavations program in Sijilmâsa, Morocco. Originally published in French in 2013, his book The Golden Rhinoceros: Histories of the African Middle Ages was released in English by Princeton University Press in 2018.