In the summer of 2002, in preparation for my final-year university module on the works of Geoffrey Chaucer, I started reading a rather odd sort of poem. The House of Fame made little immediate impact on me, other than the image of a magnificent (and truculent) eagle bearing the poet up to the heavens and … More Let your works be dead: the haunting House of Fame
It’s early July. Up here in North Yorkshire, there is daylight for over seventeen hours in every twenty-four, the sun is shining (intermittently), and two thousand medievalists are heading in our direction from all over the world. This can only mean one thing: the Leeds International Medieval Congress. Leeds is the second-largest medieval conference in … More Where does a drunk priest enchant a foxglove? At the Leeds International Medieval Congress
Recently in the UK there have been a number of strikes by hospital doctors over the new contract handed to them by the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt. On a couple of these occasions, I spent a brief period, before going to work in the morning, holding banners with doctors and their supporters at my local … More Who treated the sick in Anglo-Saxon England?
It’s April already: how has over a quarter of the year already passed? One of my New Year’s resolutions was to write at least two blogposts a month, which I have managed to keep so far. It’s probably easier than embarking on some kind of unforgiving health regime, like one of those detox diets which … More Anglo-Saxon detox diets
So you’re scrolling through your Facebook feed, and one of those memes pops up. You know what I mean. Either it’s a sick child who needs your prayers (‘1 like = 100 prayers!’), or a cursed photo of a hellwraith (‘like and share or you’ll die tonight!!’), or simply an inspirational image which will give … More Like, pray, share: Anglo-Saxon prayer memes
When all of the people that you are studying died around a millennium or so ago, it’s easy to feel far removed from your subject matter. Every now and then, however, something pops up to make me think that the Anglo-Saxon era was not so long ago after all – though perhaps none of these … More When research meets reality: Anglo-Saxons in the present day