Having led a guided walk around ‘early medieval Canterbury’ for delegates on the second day at the ‘Negotiating Power in the Early Middle Ages’ conference organised by Charlotte Liebelt, with the assistance of Drs Leonie Hicks and Mike Bintley, at CCCU, I thought I would first mention another medieval history conference that will take place next Friday and Saturday. This, too, will be at CCCU and is entitled ‘Rebellion in Medieval Europe’. One of the keynote speakers next week will be Dr David Grummitt (Head of the School of Humanities, CCCU), and the conference organisers are Drs Adrian Jobson and Paul Dalton, with Professor Louise Wilkinson.
First of all – advance notice that on 3 January 2019 the essay collection edited by Drs Diane Heath, Victoria Blud and Einat Klafter on Gender in Medieval Places, Spaces and Thresholds will be available ‘in all good bookshops’, or you can pre-order now at: https://www.sas.ac.uk/publication/gender-medieval-places-spaces-and-thresholds . Published by the Institute for Historical Research, it will also be available to download at: http://humanities-digital-library.org/index.php/hdl . To celebrate this excellent event, the book will be launched at the Gender and History conference at Durham in January, with a follow up launch at Canterbury Christ Church because of the involvement of CCCU historians and that the book comes out of the Gender and History conference held here in 2017.
Next week will be more meetings than events, but it is great to know that preparations for Becket 2020 are continuing to develop on a wide range of fronts. Among these will be the conference at Canterbury Cathedral in November 2020, for which the plenary speakers are already in place and the call for papers will go out fairly soon. Other events planned include an even bigger Medieval Pageant than usual, a light show and events linked to several other medieval saints up and down the country – a truly national celebration of cathedral cities in England and Wales.
Next week looks very exciting. We have the Becket Lecture on Tuesday when Dr Rachel Koopmans will tell us about her fascinating new findings about the Becket stained glass windows in Canterbury Cathedral. Among her exciting discoveries with Leonie Seliger are the earliest images of these pilgrims that had been thought to be a 19th-century creation. This is ground-breaking research, and everyone is welcome to come to hear her in Powell Lecture Theatre at 6.30pm (following a wine reception).
I must admit I thought the Centre was busy in October, but things really move up a gear in November. Starting with the event in the Powell Building next Friday to mark the centenary of the signing of the Armistice that Dr Martin Watts is heavily involved in. For details of the talks, readings and music, please call 01227 922994. The following week will see Professor Louise Wilkinson speaking to Canterbury Historical and Archaeological Society on ‘Women and chivalry’ in Newton, Ng03 at 7pm on the Wednesday and then on Saturday 17 November will be the ‘Exploring Kentish Naming Practices’ conference (with Kent Archaeology Society) www.canterbury.ac.uk/kent-names .
Because ‘War Horse’ has arrived in the cathedral precincts, I thought I would again draw attention to the ‘100 Years since Armistice’ event that will be taking place on Friday 9 November at Canterbury Christ Church. Details of the talks, music and readings during the day-long programme are available by calling 01227 922994.
Before I get to the main events of the last week, I thought I would mention three events next month that either the Centre is organising/co-organising (with Kent Archaeological Society) or in which Centre staff are involved.
I’m delighted to say that the ‘Tudors and Stuarts History Weekend 2019’ website is almost there and all being well it will be possible to book tickets for the tours from later next week, including those led by Paul Bennett (Canterbury Archaeological Trust). These tickets always go pretty quickly, so if you are interested, please do book early to avoid disappointment.
It won’t be long before we are into the Centre’s autumn events, and, as well as the Nightingale Lecture mentioned last week, it is with great pleasure that I want to let you know that Dr Rachel Koopmans has agreed to give the annual Becket Lecture in either November or early December, when she will discuss her new and exciting findings regarding the Becket miracle windows.
This week I thought I would start with Paula the Polar Bear’s visit to Canterbury Cathedral precincts on Wednesday. She only visited her adoring public for short periods due to the warm weather – Canterbury is hardly the Arctic even with global warming and deep ice sheets melting to the north of Greenland.