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Salon: Issue 294
4 March 2013

The Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter (Salon) is a fortnightly digest of news from the heritage sector. It focuses on the activities of the Society and the contribution that the Society's Fellows make to public life. Like the intellectual salons of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Europe, it aims to amuse and to stimulate debate as well as to inform. A copy of Salon’s editorial policy can be found on the Society’s website. News and feedback for publication in Salon should be addressed to the Editor, Christopher Catling.
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Inside this issue

Can we have our old Salon back?

Thank you to everyone who gave feedback on the new-look Salon. Much of that feedback concerned display and readability problems, and we hope that this week’s revised design resolves most of these. We have used larger type and a longer line length, and the contents list is now back where it was, at the start of the newsletter. Renée LeDue, the Society’s Communications Officer, has worked hard on the new design and has found a way of ensuring that you can now navigate from the contents list to a specific report and back again.

Don’t forget that to see the pictures you have to click on the button that says ‘Show Remote Content’. If Salon still doesn't display correctly, try clicking on the hotlinked text in the top left-hand corner of this email, which says ‘View this email in your browser’. Using your browser to view Salon means that you should see it as it was intended to be seen, independently of the settings on your email software. It is worth remembering, too, that it is easy to enlarge the newsletter content by holding down the ‘Ctrl’ key (or the ‘cmd’ key on Apple products) and pressing the + (plus) key; vice versa, use ‘Ctrl’ and the – (hyphen or minus) key to reduce the size.

Some readers have also asked why Salon always goes into their ‘Spam’ folder. Usually as soon as you mark something ‘not spam’, your email client remembers this and should not block future issues. With institutional emails,
however,  you may have to ask your IT department to make sure that Salon is ‘white listed’ using the information on this page of the MailChimp website.

And a surprisingly large number of Fellows have asked ‘why the change; can’t we have our old Salon back?' It is gratifying to learn, after all these years, that Salon’s somewhat utilitarian design was actually liked by so many people for its simplicity and legibility. Unfortunately, we don’t have the option to continue with the old system. Now twelve years old and developed in the pioneer years of email newsletters, the old Salon system is due to be switched off at the end of March 2013 — Salon now being its only remaining customer.

Will it, one wonders, sing ‘Daisy, Daisy’ as it expires, as HAL does in 2001: A Space Odyssey (that being, apparently, the first song that a computer was programmed to sing
computer archaeologists can learn more about this on YouTube).

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Forthcoming meetings

Tea is served from 4.15pm, and meetings start at 5pm

7 March 2013: ‘Motor-bicycling Around England: archaeology and architecture in the early Victoria County History’, by Chris Lewis, FSA, and Paul Stamper, FSA
In the late nineteenth century archaeology and architecture stood somewhat apart from history and from one another. The arrival of the Victoria County History in the late 1890s gave the opportunity to formulate a more rounded approach to the history of counties and localities. This joint paper looks at how early volumes treated archaeology and architecture, addressing the ambitions, successes and failures of the first two general editors. It examines how they recruited and where necessary trained a team of expert contributors, and the partnerships that they forged with individual scholars and with analogous bodies, such as the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England.

14 March 2013: ‘An English Coach in the Moscow Kremlin: a forgotten Jacobean masterpiece’, by Julian Munby, FSA
The Muscovy Company’s coach taken to Boris Godunov in 1604 survives in the Kremlin Armoury Museum. Despite a long tradition of Russian scholarship, and interest by visiting scholars studying the superb collections of plate, the coach has never before been studied in detail. It is of interest not only as the earliest surviving example of the new ‘coach’ style of vehicle, introduced into England from continental Europe in the late sixteenth century, but also as a superb example of decoration by English and continental artists and craftsmen. A study visit for the V&A with photographer Peter Kelleher has allowed a full examination of this extraordinary machine.

21 March 2013: ‘Castle Rushen as an Expression of the Kingdom and Lordship of Man’, by Paul Drury, FSA
Castle Rushen is one of the best preserved but least documented medieval castles in the British Isles. From its origin c 1200 as the principal seat of the later Norse Kings of Man and the Isles, it reflected, and so can be read as illuminating, the singular status and cultural affinities of the Kings and Lords of Man, until the revestment of its ‘regalities and customs’ in the English Crown in 1765. Using the results of a recent survey commissioned by Manx National Heritage as part of a conservation plan for the castle, the talk will develop O’Neil’s 1951 study (in Archaeologia, 94, 1—26). It will explore how the evolving structures expressed the roles of, and conveyed messages about, the castle as royal / lordly residence, seat of government and principal fortress of the Island. Its role in the emergence of Man’s earliest town, Castletown, will also be considered.

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26 April 2013: Piety in Peril seminar

This one-day seminar, sponsored by the Society of Antiquaries and organised by Fellow Robert Hutchinson, aims to
  • establish the scale of repairs and conservation work required on medieval parish churches in England
  • determine the current financial problems confronting parishes and the Churches Conservation Trust in their efforts to maintain the fabric of their churches and examine the operation of the new Heritage Lottery Funding scheme of grant aid
  • predict the rate of closure of medieval parish churches over the next five years
  • explore safeguards for monuments and other fixtures and fittings when a closed church is used for other purposes
  • examine the issues being raised in the faculty system of granting approval for changes within a church and the impact on archaeological deposits
  • and publicise the challenges raised by the preservation of this important sector of England’s heritage estate.

Registration costs £20 per person and includes lunch and refreshments. To book, please email the Society’s Executive Assistant Jola Zdunek. There is further information on the Society’s website.

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Ballot results 28 February 2013

As a result of the ballot held on 28 February 2013, we welcome the following newly elected Fellows of our Society:
  • Joanna Sofaer, Senior Lecturer, Dept of Archaeology, University of Southampton, specialising in the European Bronze Age
  • Paul Henry Joseph Goldman, independent scholar specialising in Victorian art and illustration
  • Gail Stoten, Archaeologist, Cotswold Archaeology, specialising in the cultural heritage implications of major developments
  • Paul Brown, independent archaeologist specialising in prehistoric rock art
  • Barbara Brown, independent archaeologist specialising in prehistoric rock art
  • Lars Ljungstrom, Curator and Head of Collections, The Royal Collections, Stockholm, responsible for the historic collections of all ten Swedish royal palaces
  • Polly Groom, Regional Inspector of Ancient Monuments for South West Wales, Cadw
  • Michael Shaw, Black Country and Wolverhampton City Archaeologist, specialising in industrial archaeology
  • Elizabeth Ashman Rowe, Lecturer in Scandinavian History, University of Cambridge, specialising in Icelandic manuscripts.

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Gifts to the Society: the Hartshorne manuscripts

Typically at weekly meetings, when the President announces ‘Gifts’, two or more recently published books are tabled that have been given to the Society by the authors or by well-wishers. At the most recent meeting, held on 28 February 2013, the gift was altogether different, consisting of a collection of antiquarian papers, comprising a large notebook called ‘Military architecture of the Norman Period, 1839, Orford & Castle Hedingham’ and a folder containing a large number of loose watercoloured plans of castles by Charles Hartshorne; an octavo notebook of fine drawings of architectural details, and also several ink drawings of details from monumental effigies; and a large folio volume containing more than ninety of Albert Hartshorne’s very high-standard scaled pencil and ink drawings of sepulchral monuments.

The antiquary Charles Henry Hartshorne (1802—65) married Frances Margaretta, younger daughter of our Fellow the Revd Thomas Kerrich, FSA, in 1828 (Kerrich, of course, holds an honoured place in our Society’s memory as the donor of the Kerrich Bequest, one of the most important groups of late medieval portrait paintings to survive in Britain). His notebook of 1839 dates from the same year that he was elected a Fellow of our Society and in which his son, Albert Hartshorne (1839—1910), was born. His major work, Salopia antiqua, is described by the Dictionary of National Biography as a ‘genuinely original archaeological synopsis which may still be consulted with profit ... founded on an extensive and vigorous exploration of his native county’.

Albert Hartshorne was elected a Fellow of our Society in 1882, serving for a time on Council and becoming the local secretary for Derbyshire. His magnum opusRecumbent Monumental Effigies in Northamptonshire — was published in parts between 1867 and 1876. It was illustrated with photographs taken from ink copies of original pencil drawings that had been prepared to scale on the spot, very like the bound series of tomb effigies in the collection that the Society has just acquired. In their faithful likeness to the original sculptured figures, showing details of armour, dress and jewellery at actual size, the drawings and descriptions of the individual dated monuments contained useful information on costume history, which Hartshorne himself developed in later studies of sword belts (1891) and portraiture (1899). Our library already has two full-size drawings (in fragile condition) of effigies at Hughenden and Hereford Cathedral that Albert Hartshorne presented to the Society himself. Others of his papers are in the Northamptonshire Record Office.

The papers presented to the Society were bought at Bonham’s, Oxford, on 19 February 2013 (Lot 42). Our Fellows Jerome Bertram and Sally Badham received pledges from twenty-three other Fellows (Jon Bayliss, Martin Biddle, John Blair, Richard Busby, Derrick Chivers, Paul Cockerham, John Crook, Mark Downing, Brian and Moira Gittos, Norman Hammond, Richard Knowles, Philip Lankester, Julian Litton, Julian Luxford, Richard Marks, David Meara, Sophie Oosterwijk, Roger Rosewell, Martin Stuchfield, Barbara Tomlinson, Adam White and Jean Wilson) that enabled them to bid with confidence to secure the lot. All the contents have been listed and photographed and are currently being assessed for conservation. Meanwhile a DVD of the contents is available for viewing from the library.

Left: Alice, Countess Dowager of Derby (d 1636), at Harefield church, Middlesex, drawn September 1865 by Albert Hartshorne, FSA

Fifteenth-century wall paintings of the highest significance found in Wales

The wall paintings that are currently being revealed in the south aisle of St Cadoc’s church, Llancarfan, in the Vale of Glamorgan, ‘are a significant discovery of major, national importance’, says conservator Jane Rutherfoord. Along with her colleague, Ann Ballantyne, Jane has been revealing the paintings from beneath multiple layers of overlying limewash since 2008 in a project financed by the Heritage Lottery Fund, CADW and a number of private sponsors.

‘So far, “St. George and the Dragon”, “Death and the Gallant” and the “Seven Deadly Sins” have been found, and there is still more to hope for’, Jane told Salon. ‘Our research, which is on-going, currently indicates a date between 1455 and 1485. These paintings are exceptional for several reasons. The image of St. George appears to be the largest wall painting of this subject in Britain and, apart from one other example, it seems to be the most complete. However, in addition to containing all the protagonists of the story, it has a unique iconographic feature: the inclusion of an image of the Virgin, blessing the combat scene.’
‘Wall paintings of “Death and the Gallant” (closely associated with the “Dance of Death”) are exceptionally rare. The only other known example in Britain is painted on two stone panels that form part of the Markham Chantry, in Newark. There was another example in Salisbury Cathedral, in the chantry chapel commissioned by Lady Margaret Hungerford after the death of her husband Robert Hungerford (d 1459). In an inventory of 1472 the chapel was described as “late founded and stablisshed by the saide Lady”, who joined her husband in the chapel in 1477. In September 1789 the Society of Antiquaries commissioned Jacob Schnebbelie to record the wall paintings in the chapel shortly before it was demolished in 1790.’

‘The “Seven Deadly Sins” incorporates some particularly interesting iconography: most medieval representations of Sloth (“Accidia”) use a sleeping figure, but here “Accidia” is portrayed (see above) as a man running himself through with a sword in a violent act of suicide, which is more obviously evocative of the vice of “Tristia”, a sin of religious melancholy, apathy and despair, as described by Pope Gregory the Great (c. 540—604). “Tristia” was eventually replaced by “Accidia”, often defined as ‘neglect of religious duty’ and described by Thomas Aquinas (1225—74) as a form of torpor or spiritual weariness and a withdrawal in which one can become consumed by the presence of evil, lose all hope and give way to the depths of sorrow.’
‘Thanks entirely to the limited funds available for the “restoration” works carried out in 1876—7, St Cadoc’s escaped the extremes of renovation to which so many other churches fell victim at that period, namely the removal of old limewash and plaster. During timber repairs in 2007 the architect recognized the potential significance of some small areas of red ochre, visible just below the wall-plate, and sought specialist advice. Following initial investigations and then our discovery of the princess and the king, in 2008, the main programme of uncovering and conservation got under way 2010. The most obvious threat to the paintings was (and in untreated areas still is) the huge weight of the overlying limewash (in places in excess of twenty layers thick) literally pulling the paintings off the walls. Less obvious is the dire condition of much of the underlying plaster.’

A comprehensive paper about both the paintings and their conservation will be published once the entire scheme has been revealed. For further information in the mean time, contact Jane Rutherfoord.

Above: Luxuria (Lust); all photographs in this report © Jane Rutherfoord

Why people do not eat horse in England

Uncannily anticipating the current fuss over the discovery that not all ‘beef’ products sold in supermarkets in the UK are entirely made of beef, the Oxford Journal of Archaeology is about to publish a paper by Kristopher Poole on dietary shifts in Anglo-Saxon England, which suggests that our aversion to eating horses dates from the eighth century.

Until then the eating of horse flesh was not expressly forbidden by Church leaders, but that changed when Pope Gregory III pronounced it to be ‘a filthy and abominable practice’, which was to be suppressed ‘in every possible way’, in AD 732, in response to a question about the consumption of horse by the Thuringians. Papal legates visiting England in AD 786 with a mission to enforce orthodoxy within the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms told those they met: ‘'many of you eat horse, which no Christian does in the East; avoid this also’. It is possible that the Church taboo dates from the Roman period, when eating horse (hippophagy) was seen as a cultural marker separating Romans from barbarians, one that was later absorbed into the teachings of the Church.

Animal bone data from settlement sites in northern Europe suggest that meat from horses was never a very common component of the diet; even so, some 30 per cent of early Anglo-Saxon sites in England have produced evidence of horse consumption in the form of horse bones with the type of butchery marks associated with food preparation, as distinct from those left by glue or hide processing. The incidence of horse bones in food remains drops off markedly in the Middle Saxon period, possibly as the result of this deliberate Church campaign to portray the eating of horse flesh as linked to ‘pagan’ beliefs and practices.

Butchered horse bones do not disappear entirely from the archaeological record. They continue to occur in settlements associated with those lower down the social hierarchy, possibly because the less well-off had no choice but to eat horse in times of famine or because this section of society continued to follow pagan practices after they had ceased among the elite; Kristopher Poole thinks it is possible too that horse consumption could be a marker of Scandinavian (Viking) cultural practice.

Our Fellow Helena Hamerow, one of the Oxford journal’s editors, and an expert on early Anglo-Saxon communities, says: ‘This is an important paper that shows how far back in history the aversion to eating horses seems to go amongst the English ... it disappeared from the diet after the conversion, as church authorities tried to undermine the habit.’

A copy of the paper may be downloaded for free from the Oxford Journal of Archaeology website.

Will the study of archaeology become a thing of the past?

Writing in the Guardian in the wake of the recent Richard III publicity, Professor Michael Braddick, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Sheffield, argues that archaeological ingenuity of the kind brought to bear on what Channel 4 calls ‘The King under the Car Park’ might give a temporary boost to Leicester University’s archaeology department but that archaeology departments up and down the country are likely to contract and close, despite the value and interest of what they do.

‘Archaeological science is expensive’, he writes, ‘and does not attract research funding driven by the search for economic growth. Student numbers are low, nationally, and although student satisfaction measures and price put it on a par with history and English, archaeology departments cannot attract students in the same numbers.’

Closure would, he argues, represent a significant loss to our national research capacity and knowledge base, and would probably hit students from poorer backgrounds hardest, because they have traditionally been attracted to the subject. He argues that archaeology ought to be regarded as one of the ‘strategically important and vulnerable subjects’ (SIVS) that HEFCE has designated as worthy of special support to ensure that they do not disappear from the syllabus.

Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon reunited

Tudor portraits of Henry VIII and his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, have been hung side by side at the National Portrait Gallery again after several centuries apart, leading one newspaper to report the story under the headline ‘Missed me Kate?’

The portrait of Catherine of Aragon, painted by an unknown artist in the 1520s, was spotted in 2008 during a visit to Lambeth Palace by staff of the National Portrait Gallery as part of their Making Art in Tudor Britain research project. They went to Lambeth to study a portrait of William Warham, the Archbishop of Canterbury who married Henry and Catherine in 1509. While they were there they noticed another painting that had, very unusually, retained its original engaged frame.

Charlotte Bolland, curator of the Making Art in Tudor Britain project, said: ‘it was immediately apparent that it was in a very early frame, something which was a relatively rare survival, a way of frame-making that went out of fashion in the early sixteenth century.’ The clothing style also looked too early for this to be a portrait of Henry VIII’s sixth wife. Subsequent research and conservation treatment showed a closer match with the facial features of Henry’s first wife.

A number of other similarities of composition, scale and date suggested that Catherine's portrait was painted as a partner to a portrait of Henry VIII already in the National Portrait Gallery's collection, and that they had once been hung side by side. The reunited paintings are typical of the type of portrait that was produced in multiple versions in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries when long galleries were all the rage among the aristocracy, like the panel paintings of medieval and Tudor monarchs of similar date in the Society’s collection.

Left: Henry VIII, unknown Anglo-Netherlandish artist, c1520 © National Portrait Gallery, London; right: Catherine of Aragon, unknown artist, c1520 © the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Church Commissioners

The Catherine of Aragon portrait is now on loan to the National Portrait Gallery, where it can be seen in Room 1 as part of a temporary exhibition, Henry and Catherine Reunited, until 1 September 2013.

Newly discovered portrait of Lady Anne Clifford

This weekend’s Observer published a report on the rediscovery of a portrait of Lady Anne Clifford, painted in 1618 by the fashionable Stuart artist, William Larkin, showing her at the age of twenty-eight in mourning dress. Found in private ownership by art dealer and portraiture expert Mark Weiss, this appears to be the lost original of a portrait mentioned in the journal that Lady Anne kept from 1603.

Dr Jessica Malay, currently editing Lady Anne Clifford’s Great Books of Record as part of a three-year Leverhulme-funded research project at Huddersfield University, says that Lady Anne had many copies of her portraits made and distributed to her friends: one such copy of this portrait has long been at Knole, in Kent. This one appears to be the original and is expected to sell for around £350,000 when it is auctioned in Maastricht in mid-March.

Vatican art and artefact database goes live

The Vatican has published an online catalogue of almost 3.5m paintings and sculptures belonging to some of Italy’s 63,773 churches. The database has taken sixteen years to compile, such is the scale of Italy’s artistic religious heritage, and the project is a collaboration between Italy’s 216 dioceses, the Ministry of Culture, the Italian Episcopal Conference and the National Office for Ecclesiastical Heritage. Thousands of works held in the churches of certain dioceses, such as those of Florence and Naples, are still to be catalogued, and the database will eventually be expanded to include architectural heritage and literary archives.

Users can search by artist, subject matter, object, diocese and date range and the search results can be filtered further if needed, but experts have pointed out a number of flaws in the system that suggest more work is needed. Professor David Ekserdjian, of Leicester University, says that the database is most useful for researching less well-known works, but suffers from not providing the exact location of the works, only the name of the diocese.

As does the archaeological archive of Israel

Scanned documents relating to archaeological research carried out in Israel between 1912 and 1948 are also now available online. This ‘scientific archive’ was begun by the British Mandatory Department of Antiquities and is managed today by the Israel Antiquities Authority. Dr Uzi Dahari, Deputy Director of the Israel Antiquities Authority, said that archaeological sites constituted one of Israel’s largest and most important assets. The newly available documents consist of letters, notebooks, photographs, maps and plans, mostly written in English, covering fieldwork, excavation and finds and the conservation and administration of Israel’s 30,000 designated sites and monuments.

Last but not least, the Archaeological Journal online

Volumes 1 to 120, the first 120 years of the Archaeological Journal, are now available to view on the website of the Archaeology Data Service. Published annually by the Royal Archaeological Institute (RAI) since 1844, the journal contains papers on all aspects of the archaeological, architectural and landscape history of the British Isles.

Volumes 121 to 160 are currently being scanned and will soon be available, while recent journals (from Vol 161, published in 2004, to Vol 168, for 2011) are available through the RAI website for subscribing members and libraries and on ArchLib on a pay-per-view basis.

Monuments Symposium papers

In November 2012, the Church Building Council held a symposium on ‘Current challenges to church monuments’, aiming to raise awareness of some of the challenges to monuments that churches and cathedrals are facing and considered options for their protection and conservation. The papers presented at this event can be seen on the Church Care website.

Michael Welby bequeaths silver and gold collection to the Ashmolean

A collection of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century silver and gold left to the Ashmolean by the late collector Michael Welby has been described by Christopher Brown, the museum’s Director, as ‘one of the most important acquisitions that has ever been made in the very long history of the Ashmolean museum’. Our Fellow Professor Timothy Wilson played a key role in persuading Michael Welby, who came from a London family of silversmiths and dealers and was an internationally acknowledged expert on northern European Renaissance and baroque silver, that the Ashmolean was the perfect home for his treasures.

There are so many pieces that the museum is now planning to build a new gallery devoted to the collection, much of which was acquired at public auctions in the mid-twentieth century, when the ornate style described by Tim Wilson as ‘explosions of panache, craftsmanship and sometimes sheer wackiness’ was regarded as old-fashioned.

For more on this story, see the report by our Fellow Maev Kennedy in the Guardian.

Rare silver playing cards

Fellow Timothy Schroder, who also specialises in gold and silver decorative arts, has just published the catalogue of another major collection, this time formed by the American entrepreneur, Selim Zilkha. In Renaissance and Baroque Silver, Mounted Porcelain and Ruby Glass from the Zilkha Collection (ISBN 9781907372353; Paul Holberton Publishing, Timothy describes a very rare set of silver playing cards created in Germany around 1616 by the engraver Michael Frömmer. ‘Silver cards were exceptional,’ Schroder writes. ‘They were not made for playing with but as works of art for the collector’s cabinet, or Kunstkammer. Only five sets of silver cards are known today and of these only one — the Zilkha set — is complete.’

The original owner is not known, but the cards were in the possession of the Infanta Carlota Joaquina when she fled to Brazil when Napoleon’s armies marched into Iberia in 1807. The Infanta, sister of Ferdinand VII, who was forced by Napoleon to abdicate the throne of Spain, made an attempt to establish a new kingdom in South America by taking over Spanish crown property in the New World. Though she failed in her attempt, she gave the playing cards to the wife of Felipe Contucci, the man who did most to support her ambitions.

The King of Cups (left) is dressed as an ancient Roman; another king is depicted as a Holy Roman Emperor and another is dressed as a Sultan. The knights and knaves are depicted in Renaissance military or courtly costume. Photo: by Patrick Debremme

Machiavelli’s arrest warrant

Manchester University’s Professor Stephen Milner, currently Visiting Professor at the Harvard Centre for Italian Renaissance Studies at Villa I Tatti in Florence, has discovered the proclamation, dated 19 February 1513, issued by the Medici rulers of the city calling for the arrest of Niccolò Machiavelli.

Machiavelli played a prominent role in the expulsion of the Medici in 1494 and the establishment of a city republic; when, with the help of the Habsburg Emperor, Charles V, the Medici returned to power in 1512, Machiavelli was removed from his post as Chancellor. When his name was then linked with a conspiracy to overthrow the Medici again, the proclamation found by Professor Milner was issued. Machiavelli was arrested the same day, tortured and later released and placed under house arrest, spending his time writing The Prince, as a reflection on his experiences.

Professor Milner found the document while studying hundreds of town crier proclamations issued between 1470 and 1530. He also found documents relating to the fees charged by four horsemen who were paid to scour the streets of Florence to look for Machiavelli.

The proclamation calling for the arrest of Machiavelli is recorded in the Florentine archives alongside a drawing of the town crier’s trumpet. Photo: University of Manchester

Medici mercenary

The return to power of the Medici in Florence saw the rise of the ruthless Cosimo I, who went on to suppress neighbouring Tuscan cities, styling himself Grand Duke of Tuscany from 1569. His father, Giovanni de’ Medici, the condottiero, or mercenary soldier, was exhumed last November from his tomb in the Medici Chapels in Florence as part of restoration work necessitated by the 1966 floods. A report on Giovanni’s remains, just published by Gino Fornaciari, Professor of Forensic Anthropology and Director of the Pathology Museum at the University of Pisa, reveals that he had numerous vertebral hernias (commonly but inaccurately known as ‘slipped discs’), one of the mundane hazards of a military life caused by wearing heavy armour.

That armour did not save him from fatal injury, however: Giovanni died aged twenty-eight after being hit in battle by a cannon ball on 25 November 1526. Eyewitness accounts said that his leg had to be amputated above the knee and that Giovanni was so brave that he refused to be held down and even held the candle that gave the surgeon the light he needed to undertake the task. In fact the surgeon only appears to have cleaned up the wound around the ankle, leaving the rest of Giovanni’s leg intact, including a wound that subsequently went gangrenous.

Richard’s Lionheart

Richard the Lionheart was probably another victim of gangrene, according to Philippe Charlier, leader of a team of French scientists who have been studying a sample from the king’s heart, preserved in Rouen, Normandy. Richard died after being shot in the shoulder with a crossbow while besieging the castle of Chalus-Chabrol in Limousin in April 1199. Charlier’s team said they found no evidence to support the idea that the crossbow had been tipped with poison.

Their studies did show, however, that the heart had been preserved using a compound of mercury, creosote and lime, mixed with myrtle, mint and daisies, and a substantial amount of frankincense. ‘We have no other example of frankincense being used in the preservation of a body, however noble or royal’, he said, speculating that the frankincense ‘may have been intended to make him smell like a saint and therefore to ease his passage to heaven’.

Has Brunelleschi’s prototype dome been found?

Another exciting Florentine discovery is a structure that might well have been the scale model built by Filippo Brunelleschi (1377—1446) to prove to the sceptical citizens of Florence that he knew how to erect a dome on Florence’s cathedral, a challenge that had defeated previous architects and engineers. Found during excavations to extend the Opera del’Duomo (Cathedral Works) Museum, the model is made of bricks arranged in a herringbone pattern. Francesco Gurrieri, Professor of Monument Restoration at the University of Florence, said that Brunelleschi had spent years studying the construction of ancient Roman and Byzantine domes and this model may well have represented the fruit of his research. Laying the bricks in a herringbone pattern was crucial to the dome’s lightweight construction, achieved without scaffolding or centring.

‘At the moment we cannot confirm the small dome was the demonstration model for Brunelleschi’s plans, but we found it in the builders’ yard he used between 1420 and 1436, when he was working on the dome’, Gurrieri said. That yard was buried in the eighteenth century when a theatre was built on the site; in the 1900s the theatre was gutted and used as a garage until the Opera del’Duomo bought it back in 1998, using it for storage and as a restoration laboratory. In 2009, construction began to transform the space into an extension for the museum. Once it has been restored, the newly discovered model dome will be placed on permanent display in the new museum, which opens in October 2015.

Blake’s works

Back in Manchester, Professor Milner’s home university, the John Rylands Library has mounted an exhibition of 350 engravings by William Blake that they did not know they had until, supervised by Blake expert and art historian Colin Todd, students were set the task of looking through a million books and records in search of Blake’s work. John Rylands library archivist Stella Halkyard said: ‘Before hunting through the collection the students had some specialist training in identifying prints from David Morris at the Whitworth Art Gallery. They found out we actually had a large number in our eighteenth- and nineteenth-century book collections.’ The exhibition focuses on Blake’s exceptional talents as a commercial engraver and celebrates the richness of this aspect of his work.

The Society can take some credit for this, since Blake learned his engraving skills as apprentice to James Basire, engraver to the Society of Antiquaries; Blake assisted in the execution of many of the engravings that Basire made for our Society, and was entrusted by Basire with the task of drawing the medieval monuments and wall paintings at Westminster Abbey as the basis for subsequent engravings.

Left: Europe supported by Africa and America, by William Blake, engraved 1796 for John Gabriel Stedman's book, Narrative of a Five Years Expedition Against the Revolted Negroes of Surinam. The book was adopted by abolitionists, and here Blake hints at the enslavement of the Africa and Amercia to Europe while presenting the possibility of a more equitable relationship.

Four men sentenced for Sandhill Park arson

Four young men have been sentenced to terms of between 12 and 27 months in prison after pleading guilty to an arson attack that caused substantial damage to Grade II* listed Sandhill Park at Bishops Lydeard, Somerset. Built around 1720 in early Georgian classical style, the interior was especially important because of its ornamental rococo plasterwork. In passing sentence at Taunton Crown Court, the judge took into account an impact statement from English Heritage, which spelt out the historical and architectural importance of Sandhill Park, explained why the building was at risk and how the fire has been a major setback to the progress that was being made to secure the future of the building.

Our Fellow Veryan Heal, Acting Planning and Conservation Director at English Heritage in the South West added, said: ‘Sandhill Park is a precious piece of the nation’s heritage that could have easily suffered total destruction as a result of this arson attack ... it remains uncertain whether the exquisite ornate eighteenth-century plaster ceilings inside the house can be saved or not. People who target historic buildings are threatening a unique part of the country’s heritage and it is only right that this is taken into account when they are brought to justice ... we are pleased that the judge has taken account of the wider cultural impact in his sentencing. We hope that this may serve as a deterrent to others who have little respect for England’s built heritage.’

In a separate case, a twenty-year-old man was found guilty in Cheltenham Magistrates Court of causing criminal damage to Grade I listed Greyfriars Church in Gloucester. He was given a twelve-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay £285 to English Heritage to cover the cost of specialist cleaners who have now successfully removed spray-painted graffiti from the soft porous limestone walls of the church. Our Fellow Mark Harrison, Policing and Crime Adviser for English Heritage, said: ‘We hope this case sends a clear message to other would-be graffiti artists that their actions will not be tolerated in our communities.’


Inevitably Salon readers include some who are less than convinced that the bones excavated last year from beneath a Leicester car park are those of Richard III. Bendor Grosvenor, of Philip Mould Ltd, sums up the views of the sceptic tendency in his amusing art history blog, commenting on the excavation evidence.

Meanwhile, Professor Dafydd Johnston, Director of the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies in Aberystwyth, believes he has found a reference to the Battle of Bosworth that describes the wounds on the Leicester skull. Among the supporters of Henry Tudor at the battle was Rhys ap Tomos. Within weeks of the battle, the poet Guto’r Glyn had composed a poem in praise of ap Tomos and his army of 1,500 Welshmen, saying that ‘He killed the boar, he shaved off his head’. This has been interpreted in the past to mean that Richard’s head was cut off but Professor Johnston now believes the word was used literally, to mean that the king’s head was sliced or scalped in the battle.

Many Salon readers enjoyed the car park sign in the last issue, so here is another humorous offering, this time spotted by Fellow Robert Harding in the most recent issue of Private Eye: it goes without saying that the cartoon is not intended as any reflection on our own august Society but refers rather to the Food Standards Agency and the Financial Services Authority, neither of which has had a good press in recent weeks.

One the other hand, useless could describe Salon’s editor: having tried to correct one error in the last issue (General Pitt Rivers’ appointment as Inspector of Ancient Monuments was not in 1893, but on 1 January 1883), another error was introduced — Pitt Rivers was Lubbock’s father-in-law, not his son-in-law (though, as Fellow Colin Bowen points out, it is unlikely that they saw each other principally in the light of that relationship anyway).

Salon also got the name wrong of SCCAS, excavators of the Anglo-Saxon long-house featured in the last issue: this is the very professional Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service, and not the Suffolk County Council Archaeological Society, as Salon had it.

And in an earlier Salon, we omitted Fellow Vincent Megaw from that select list of Fellows who had been appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM): Vincent was appointed in 2004 ‘For service to archaeology and art history as an educator, researcher and writer, particularly in the area of European Iron Age art, contemporary indigenous Australian art and music archaeology’.

Finally, Roger Bowdler says that he was as surprised as anyone to see his family home featured in the last issue of Salon, and asks for it to be pointed out that this was not an act of self-promotion —featuring it was purely the idea of Salon’s editor. On the other hand, says Roger, maybe there is a series idea here: maybe Salon should regularly feature the homes of Fellows, perhaps anonymously, and ask Salon readers to guess whose home this is — perhaps even call it ‘Through the Keyhole’; now which Fellow might we ask to present that?

News of Fellows

Regular listeners to BBC Radio 4’s ‘In Our Time’ might already have heard our Fellows Richard Bradley and Dan Hicks, plus Adam Kuper, discussing General Augustus Pitt Rivers with Melvyn Bragg on Thursday 28 February 2013; you can listen again via iPlayer.

Also, do not miss the first episode of ‘Heritage: the Battle for Britain’s Past’, to be broadcast at 9pm on BBC4 on Thursday 7 March 2013. Salon’s editor has seen a preview: it really does make the heritage sector look bold, heroic and radical (which, of course, we are) instead of the whimpering backward looking NIMBYies of media and political caricature. William Morris, quite rightly, gets much credit for his call to arms in the form of the SPAB manifesto.

Sadly our own Society does not get enough credit for its pioneering role. Historians now agree that Morris’s 1879 manifesto was based on our Society’s statement on ‘Restoration’ published in 1855, and that the Ancient Monuments Protection Bill (1900) and the Ancient Monuments Consolidation and Amendment Act (1913), whose centenary we are celebrating this year, were largely the result of the activities of two of our Society’s longest serving officers, William St John Hope and Charles Peers. Both worked hard to correct the bias in favour of prehistoric monuments in Lubbock’s 1882 Ancient Monuments Protection Act so that such medieval buildings as Tintern Abbey could be taken into guardianship. And when Peers became Chief Inspector of Ancient Monuments in 1910, he did much to reinvigorate the work of the inspectorate and lobby for the powers that were given to it in the 1913 Act.

Our Fellow Rick Turner argues persuasively in ‘Fabric, Form and Function: the Society and the Restoration question’ (Visions of Antiquity, Vol 111 of Archaeologia, 2007) that we owe a great debt to both because ‘the analytical approach [to ancient monuments] developed by Hope, and its application by Peers to the conservation of those great monuments that began to be taken into state care in the early twentieth century, saw the development of the Ministry of Works’ philosophy — summarized as “Keep as Found”’.

Fellow Mark Staniforth (Monash University) writes to say that he was in Vietnam again in late 2012 as part of an international research group comprising researchers from, or associated with, the Institute of Nautical Archaeology at Texas A&M University, Monash University and Murdoch University as well as Vietnamese researchers from the Institute of Archaeology (Vietnamese Academy of Social Sciences). They conducted maritime archaeological and related projects at the sites of two important naval battles that took place in AD 1288 at Bach Dang and Van Don. This internationally collaborative project has been undertaken since 2008. The survey included visual inspection, geophysical survey using Side Scan Sonar, and test coring/probing/excavation at selected locations based on the 2011 remote sensing survey. This work aimed to build up a more detailed picture of the historical naval battles by linking the two sites and to assess the targeted areas and palaeo-environmental conditions.

Past President Simon Swynfen Jervis modestly describes his latest booklet as ‘a small contribution to the Society’s necrology and to the historiography of charities’; it is in fact an elegantly designed and written history of The Leche Trust 1963—2013, of which Simon himself is the outgoing Chairman, written to commemorate the Trust’s first fifty years. It includes the biography of our late Fellow, Angus Whiteford Acworth CBE (1898—1981), the founder of the Leche Trust , who also happens to be, says Simon, ‘the person most responsible for the introduction in 1944 of the system of listing buildings’. It also summarises the grant-giving activities of the Leche Trust, which has more than once assisted the Society and its Fellows. Requests for copies, accompanied by a cheque for £10, should be addressed to The Secretary, The Leche Trust, 84 Cicada Road, London SW18 2NZ. Simon has also donated a copy to our Library, which will be available once it has been catalogued.

Fellow Thomas Campbell, Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, was profiled in a recent issue of Country Life magazine (6 Feb 2013) on his radical plans for the museum’s future. ‘Tapestry Tom’, as he is known by his colleagues for his landmark exhibitions at the Met on European tapestries and figurative textiles, says that ‘what I’m trying to do, without being overly didactic, is discreetly bring in more information’, on the basis that ‘there should be no assumption that the person from Tokyo knows who Rembrandt is’. He refers to the re-presentation of the medieval and Renaissance galleries at the V&A as an inspiration. He also says that one in six visitors to the museum comes to attend a formal educational event and that scholarship is a key element in the Met’s ethos, with some fifty Met Fellows a year coming to the museum to study.

Astonishingly, the Met has just published its first new guidebook in thirty years, but there is much to be done to rationalise and reorganise the collection so that it tells the story of art chronologically and logically: that involves a lot of new building and a lot of fund raising, but as 85 per cent of the Met’s collection has come in the form of gifts, often accompanied by generous cash donations, that is not something that seems to daunt the Met’s energetic Director.

There is less good news on this side of the Atlantic, where 120 national museum posts have been axed in the last two years as a consequence of Government cuts, according to the Art Newspaper. At the British Museum, thirty-two posts have gone since 2010, including the post of Deputy Director, which became vacant when our Fellow Andrew Burnett retired last month. At the National Gallery, twenty members of staff accepted voluntary redundancy packages in 2011/12; at Tate, forty-three full and part-time posts have gone since 2010, while six posts were lost at the National Maritime Museum and twenty-one at the Victoria and Albert Museum. National Museum Wales has just announced that thirty-five posts are to go to help find £2.5m in savings.

Lives Remembered: Gertrud Seidmann FSA (1919—2013)

Gertrud Seidmann’s funeral will take place at Headington Crematorium, Oxford, on 5 March at 12.45pm. No flowers; donations to the Association of Jewish Refugees via the Funeral Directors S and R Childs, Kidlington, OX5 1EE

Lives Remembered: David Whitehouse, FSA (1941—2013)

Our Fellow David Whitehouse, former Executive Director of The Corning Museum of Glass, in Corning, New York State, died on 17 February 2013 at the age of seventy-one following a brief battle with cancer. A full and detailed tribute to David can be found on the website of the Corning Museum of Glass, which David joined in 1984 as Chief Curator, becoming Director in 1992, then Executive Director and Curator of Ancient and Islamic Glass in 1999, retiring from that role in 2011.

‘David was a dedicated leader and a passionate scholar, and he will be sorely missed by his colleagues in Corning and around the world,’ said Marie McKee, Museum President. ‘David embodied the Museum’s mission to tell the world about glass. That mission drove everything that he did, from the founding of the Museum’s glassmaking school to the numerous publications, educational programs and exhibitions that he oversaw. We are very grateful to David for making The Corning Museum of Glass the world-class institution it is today.’

During his tenure as executive director, The Corning Museum of Glass campus underwent a major renovation and expansion, adding 218,000-square feet of public space and spacious new quarters for the Rakow Research Library, the world’s foremost library of glass-related materials. Under Whitehouse’s direction, nearly 20,000 acquisitions were added to the Museum’s glass collection, nearly doubling the Museum’s holdings.

Whitehouse also conceived of and established The Studio of The Corning Museum of Glass in 1996. His vision was to provide a state-of-the-art glassmaking school that would train future generations of artists working in glass and provide a creative resource for the region.

One of the foremost scholars of ancient and Islamic glass in the world, Whitehouse published more than 500 scholarly papers, reviews, monographs, and books — including three volumes of Roman Glass in The Corning Museum of Glass — in addition to serving as an adviser to various academic journals. He was editor of the Corning Museum’s annual Journal of Glass Studies from 1988 to 2011. He also curated numerous exhibitions at the museum, including Reflecting Antiquity: modern glass inspired by Ancient Rome (2008), Botanical Wonders: the story of the Harvard glass flowers (2007), and Glass of the Sultans (2001). In 1987, he co-curated the groundbreaking Glass of the Caesars exhibition with the British Museum in London and the Römisch-Germanisches Museum in Cologne.

Prior to joining the Museum, Whitehouse was Director of the British Institute of Afghan Studies and the British School at Rome. He also directed numerous archaeological excavations in the United Kingdom, Italy, Iran, Afghanistan, and Libya. Whitehouse is perhaps best known for his work at the site of the ancient city of Siraf in Iran, where between 1966 and 1973, as a Wainwright Fellow at Oxford University, he directed six seasons of excavation.

David continued to work until a few days before he died, determined to try and complete his forthcoming work on cage cups (diatreta), which it is hoped will be published shortly as a memorial to his life and work.

Lives Remembered: Hector Catling, CBE, FSA

Our Fellow Hector William Catling, another former Director of a British School, this time at Athens, died peacefully at home on 15 February 2013 at the age of eighty-eight. We hope to be able to publish a full obituary in the next issue of Salon.

Lives Remembered: Tony Legge

We are very grateful to Fellow Peter Rowley-Conwy for this appreciation of the life and work of Tony Legge, who died on 4 February 2013, after a short illness.

‘Many Fellows will have known Tony, and many more will know his zoo-archaeological work in a wide variety of projects in Britain and abroad. He came to archaeology as a mature student, and was a major force in the “bone room”, the group of researchers that Eric Higgs gathered around him in Cambridge in the late 1960s. Tony pioneered new methods of examining the origin of agriculture through the detailed analysis of faunal remains. Starting in 1974, he ran the archaeology section of London University’s Department of Continuing Education for over thirty years, inspiring many people to take up zoo-archaeology by his incisive and enthusiastic teaching. He turned down the offer of an MBE in 2012.

‘He was an active researcher throughout his life. In Britain he was the first to use zoo-archaeological evidence to argue that Neolithic and Bronze Age farmers milked their cattle and used dairy products — something that has subsequently been amply confirmed by various other lines of study, particularly the analysis of lipids in ceramics. He also re-analysed the faunal remains from the classic Mesolithic site of Star Carr, demonstrating that occupation took place in early summer, not winter as had previously been argued. His work on the Roman temple faunas from Audley End and Harlow demonstrated that the sheep were killed at particular times of year, presumably being sacrificed at seasonal festivals.

‘Outside Britain he worked on sites in Spain, Croatia, Serbia, Greece, Israel, Syria and Libya, and was probably Britain’s most widely experienced zoo-archaeologist. He always enjoyed discussing animal bones, whether in his lab or in the pub, and was always prepared to help students and other researchers. His enthusiasm was palpable. He will be much missed.’

Grants from the City of London Archaeological Trust

The City of London Archaeological Trust (CoLAT) has recently redefined important aspects of its policies and rules for grant giving. The purpose of CoLAT has always been to promote and support the archaeology of the City of London and its environs. On practical grounds, the policy in recent years has been to interpret the ‘environs’ as out to the M25. But the Trust has decided now that it should concentrate on archaeological matter directly relating to the City’s development. Applicants must in future demonstrate the significance of this link, rather than depending solely on the location of their project. The Trust is also willing to consider applications for longer projects, of up to three years.

The closing date for applications is 27 September 2013; grants will be decided in December 2013, for taking up after March 2014. All the revised application guidelines and forms will be posted on the CoLAT website at the end of May 2013, and intending applicants should wait for these new guidelines before making their application, though our Fellow John Schofield, CoLAT’s Secretary, is happy to answer any queries that arise in the meantime.


21 March 2013: ‘Climate change and cultural heritage: the challenge facing Historic Scotland’, by Ewan Hyslop, Historic Scotland’s Head of Sustainability, Research and Technical Education, 6pm for 6.15pm, A V Hill Lecture Theatre, Medical Sciences Building, University College London, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT. Please let Bethia Reith know if you wish to attend.

The impacts of climate change are already being felt through changing weather patterns and extreme weather events. In Scotland average precipitation has increased by more than 20 per cent since the 1960s, and in some areas winter precipitation has risen by more than 70 per cent. Sea levels are rising by 3 to 4mm each year, which, combined with winter storm events, is resulting in alarming incidents of flooding and damage to coastal communities and heritage sites. Reports of water penetration to traditional buildings, failures of rainwater protection and drainage systems and biological growth to masonry are all increasing.

As the government agency with wide-ranging responsibilities for the historic environment, Historic Scotland has an important role to play in supporting national emissions targets through energy efficiency improvements in traditional buildings and developing ways to increase the resilience of historic buildings and sites to resist damaging climate change impacts.

22 March 2013: ‘Avebury’s Circle: the science of John Lubbock, FRS, FSA (1834—1934)’, a history of science seminar on the life and work of John Lubbock, first Baron Avebury, to be held from 9am to 5pm at the Royal Society, at which our Fellow Janet Owen will be speaking (‘From Down House to Avebury: John Lubbock’s journey into Darwin’s scientific world through the eyes of his collection’) as will Fellow Paul Pettitt (on ‘Lubbock, caves, and the development of Middle and Upper Palaeolithic Archaeology’). Details can be found on the seminar website.

23 March 2013, ‘Dissent’, the Cambridgeshire Historic Churches Trust’s Spring Conference, to be held at The Lee Hall, Wolfson College, Cambridge CB3 9BB, from 10am to 4.30pm. This year’s theme provides an opportunity to probe the origins and development of dissenting movements in eastern England and to consider the heritage of dissent. The key speaker is our Fellow Clyde Binfield, author of ‘one of the most readable and engaging studies of dissenting history’, So Down to Prayers, who will give a paper on ‘The Ejectment of 1662: dissent and the providence of unintended consequences’. For further information see the Trust’s website.

23 March 2013: ‘Production in pieces’, a day school on ancient mosaics to be held at King’s College London. Any one wishing to enrol should contact Will Wootton. Full details are available on the King’s College website. Topics include customers for mosaics: who were they, and what did they want?; ancient mosaics: materials and techniques (with practical demonstrations); identifying ‘groups’ of mosaicists in Roman Britain (by our Fellow Stephen Cosh); making Byzantine wall mosaics; and mosaic forgeries and how to recognise them (by our Fellow Roger Ling).

17 to 19 April 2013: ‘Making waves: designing and demonstrating impact in archaeology and heritage’. Full details of the IfA’s 2013 conference and training event, to be held at the University of Aston, Birmingham, is now available on the IfA’s website.

18 and 19 April 2013: ‘On the Fascination of Objects: Greek and Etruscan Art in the Shefton Collection’, a conference in honour of our late Fellow Brian Shefton, at the Great North Museum. Speakers include our Fellows Sir John Boardman, Tony Spawforth, Alan Johnston, Judith Barringer, Brian Sparkes, David Gill, Dyfri Williams and Lucilla Burn. To register to receive further information, send an email to the Great North Museum.

Brian’s daughter, Penny Shefton, is gathering anecdotes, memories and thoughts relating to her father for a display to accompany the conference. Contributions are very welcome.

20 April 2013: ‘St Ælfheah from Deerhurst to Martyrdom: millennial reflections’, by our Fellow Professor Nicholas Brooks, 7.30pm at St Mary’s Church, Deerhurst, Gloucestershire. Tickets will be available at the door or visit the Friends of Deerhurst website. This lecture was originally scheduled to take place last year, but was postponed due to the illness of the lecturer. Nicholas is now happily recovered and the rescheduled lecture will commemorate the millennium of the martyrdom in 1012 of St Ælfheah (Alphege), who began his ecclesiastical career at Deerhurst.

29 April 2013: ‘The acquisition and attribution of Islamic ceramics in nineteenth-century Britain’, by our Fellow Francesca Vanke, Keeper of Art, Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre at 5.30pm as part of the Seminars in the History of Collecting Programme 2013.

By the end of the nineteenth century, there were ceramics from the Islamic world in the holdings of the Victoria and Albert Museum and the British Museum, and in the private collections of many noted artists and antiquarians. This collecting trend had begun gradually from around the middle of the century and had increased over fifty years. This paper will explore some of the factors which may have governed this growth of interest in collecting Islamic ware, examining which types of ceramics were being collected and which were not, the main routes by which they were acquired, and what was known and written about them. Much of what was initially believed concerning attribution was confusing and erroneous; the paper will explore some of the factors contributing to this and demonstrate how a more accurate understanding was arrived at over time.

Francesca adds that her paper is especially relevant to Fellows as ‘several of the developments in Islamic ceramic collecting and historiography during this period were first discussed at the Society of Antiquaries’.

1 May 2013: ‘Human Evolution in Europe’, by Fellow Chris Stringer, the UCL Institute of Archaeology Annual Lecture 2013, in the Christopher Ingold XLG1 Chemistry Lecture Theatre at UCL, followed by a drinks reception in the A G Leventis Gallery of Cypriot and Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology at the Institute. All are welcome to attend. To register, see the Institute’s website.

13 to 15 June 2013: ‘Emerging Empires: Muscovy and England in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries’, a two-day conference at the V&A, in association with the Society for Court Studies. This is an exciting and diverse conference, in which a number of Fellows are taking part as session chairs and speakers, occasioned by the forthcoming V&A exhibition, Treasures of the Royal Courts: Tudors, Stuarts and the Russian Tsars.

As well as papers on Russian and English trade, court and political culture, diplomacy and palace architecture, there will be optional additional events, such as a lecture at the Society of Antiquaries on 13 June by Natalia Abramova, Curator of Silver, Moscow Kremlin, on English ambassadorial silver from the Moscow Kremlin Museums, and an evening reception at the Banqueting House, Whitehall Palace, on 14 June with music from the Orchestra of St John’s, directed by John Lubbock. Full details can be found on the V&A’s website.

28 June 2013: Renaissance Encounters: a symposium in honour of our Fellow Professor Deborah Howard on the occasion of her retirement, to be held at the Old Divinity School, St John’s College, Cambridge. Scholars from the UK, US, Italy and Croatia will be gathering to give papers on Renaissance art, religiosity, architecture, music, education, city planning, domestic life and more in celebration of Professor Howard’s long and successful academic career. For further information, see the website of Cambridge University’s History of Art Department.

9 to 12 July 2013: ‘Plantations Amidst Savagery? The reformed monastic orders in north Europe c 1100 to c 1600’. This University of Stirling conference, supported by Historic Scotland, has been organised by our Fellow Richard Oram to mark the 900th anniversary of the founding in 1113 by David, youngest son of St Margaret of Scotland, of a colony from St Bernard of Abbeville’s abbey of Thiron-Gardais at Selkirk in the Scottish Borders. This community was the first of any of the reformed Benedictine or Augustinian monastic orders to be founded in the British Isles.

The arrival of these continental monks heralded an era of profound religious, political, cultural, social and economic transformation in the lands along the northern rim of Christendom from Scotland and Ireland in the west, through England, Scandinavia and north Germany, to Poland and Estonia in the east.

The conference will bring together scholars from across Europe and North America to explore the monastic impact on the culture and society of northern Europe from the twelfth to the sixteenth centuries and its modern legacies.

For full programme and booking details see the conference website.

Books by Fellows: The English and their Legacy 900—1200

Edited by Fellow David Roffe, this volume of essays was presented to our Fellow Ann Williams on 22 February 2013 at the Society of Antiquaries in London where she was hailed for her contribution to the study of England either side of the Norman Conquest and especially her desire to understand more about the people — individuals and families — named in the Domesday Book and the impact on them of the changes that took place as a consequence of this momentous turning point in English history.

That is the enterprise that informs the essays in this volume, which opens with William Aird’s essay on how historians reconstruct people’s lives from pre-Conquest sources, and then moves on to essays on the Swart family of Suffolk, the lives and fortunes of a group of metalworkers and moneyers in Kent, and then to the life and work of Master Wace (c 1110—after 1174), the author of the Roman de Rou (c 1155), his history of the Duchy of Normandy which is another key source for understanding the people and politics of the period.

The papers then branch out into broader historical studies of specific manors, hundreds, shires and whole regions, including Charles Insley’s paper on the emergence of a marcher society with its own institutions, of David Roffe’s on the slow absorption of English landowners in Lincolnshire into post-Conquest feudal society and their emergence as minor county gentry in the later medieval period, while Fellow Simon Keynes traces the rise of London to pre-eminence in this period and a shift in the centre of royal and political gravity from Winchester.

Katharine Keats-Rohan contributes a powerful paper on the Bayeux Tapestry, which she predicts will come as a ‘severe shock to the sensibilities of Tapestry scholars’, and be dismissed as ‘an over-ambitious attempt at A Theory of Everything’; one hopes not, because it presents a very persuasive argument that the Tapestry was produced under the patronage of Archbishop Stigand, tells the story of the Conquest from an English perspective (albeit in terms designed to be flattering to the Normans) and is part of the process by which the English came to terms with their defeat. Key to this argument is that the Tapestry ‘pre-dates the systematic assault on Harold as a perjured usurper’, fashioned later in William I’s reign by Archbishop Lanfranc.

Robert of Torigny’s Historia Anglorum, the subject of David Bates’s paper, was another attempt at forging an account of the Conquest that help to ‘weld English and Normans into a new nation’. One of the other ways in which this was done goes back to prehistory and continues today in the form of state banquets: Mark Hagger examines the role of food and feasting, as depicted in the Bayeux Tapestry, as a means of social and political mediation in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, while Fellow Stephen Church looks at the remarkable history of the Exchequer cloth, marked out with black and white lines and squares, first mentioned in AD 1110, though its use as a device for royal revenue calculations probably existed long before that date.

The English and their Legacy 900—1200; essays in honour of Ann Williams, edited by Fellow David Roffe; ISBN 9781843837947; Boydell

Books by Fellows: La Demeure Seigneuriale dans l’Espace Plantagenêt

For more than thirty years our Fellow Gwyn Meirion-Jones has organised an informal Franco-British Field Seminar at the beginning of every September for a small group of enthusiasts interested in the study of the lordly or seigneurial residence. The essays in this book result from those field trips and they reflect the varied interests of the members, eight of whom are Fellows: several are historians or art historians, while others specialise in archaeology, architecture, ethnology or geography. Some have careers in the conservation of buildings and monuments historiques, as architects or inspectors. A few are university professors while others include the director of a national museum, a master mason and a French army general.

‘The group’, says Gwyn, ‘is united by a desire to meet in the field to discuss findings, theories and aspirations, in an agreeable and friendly manner. Inevitably, these aims have been greatly helped by gastronomic pleasures: lunches in the field and dinners with a strong regional flavour!’ Their study tours have so far taken in the Cotentin, the pays d’Auge, the Avranchin, Anjou, Maine, Touraine, the Périgord, Quercy, Guyenne, Gascogne and Burgundy (where several members had already published a major study of the town houses of Cluny) and the Channel Islands. In this volume there is an additional theme: that of territories once associated with the Plantagenets.

The volume is the third to emerge from the activities of this group, having been preceded by Manorial Domestic Buildings in England and Northern France, which our Society published in 1993, and The Seigneurial Residence in Western Europe AD c 800—1600, published in 2002 as BAR Int Ser 1988.

La Demeure Seigneuriale dans l’Espace Plantagenêt: salles, chambres et tours, edited by Gwynn Meirion-Jones; ISBN 9782753521131; Presses Universitaires de Rennes

Books by Fellows: World Archaeology at the Pitt Rivers Museum: a characterization

Edited by Fellow Dan Hicks and Alice Stevenson, this overview of Oxford University’s Pitt Rivers Museum archaeological collections is being published simultaneously in hard copy and in open-access form online, embracing fully the new world of open access whereby the results of publicly funded research is made freely accessible to all who wish to read it.

The book is the product of a research project — Characterizing the World Archaeology Collections of the Pitt Rivers Museum — that sought to assess the significance of some 136,000 artefacts from 145 countries, dating from the Palaeolithic to the modern period, and from every continent. Each of the twenty-nine papers looks at the range and importance of material in the collection for a particular period and region, providing a unique introduction to the archaeological collections of one of the world’s most famous museums and setting out priorities for future research.

World Archaeology at the Pitt Rivers Museum: a characterization, edited by Dan Hicks and Alice Stevenson; ISBN 9781905739585; Archaeopress

Books by Fellows: Parallel Lives: ancient island societies in Crete and Cyprus

This British School at Athens monograph, edited by Fellow Gerald Cadogan, Maria Iacovou, Katerina Kopaka and James Whitley, asks why islands as close to each other as Crete and Cyprus developed in such different ways during the 3rd to late 1st millennia BC. Why, for instance, did monumental buildings not appear in Cyprus until several centuries after they had emerged in Crete? And what was the impact on Cypriot society of the island’s rich copper resources, while Crete as a rule had to import the metal? How and why did Cyprus manage an apparently much more peaceful transition from the Bronze Age to the Iron Age than Crete?

These and other important questions about the social and political, economic and technological, and religious and mortuary practices and behaviours of these two great eastern Mediterranean islands were addressed at a seminar in 2006 by a group of leading experts from the British School at Athens and the Universities of Cyprus and Crete. This book contains their fully revised papers and is likely to be a valuable resource for students of both islands and all who are interested in ancient material cultures and mentalities in the Mediterranean.

Parallel Lives: ancient island societies in Crete and Cyprus, edited by Gerald Cadogan, Maria Iacovou, Katerina Kopaka and James Whitley; ISBN 9780904887662; British School at Athens Studies 20.


Cathedrals Fabric Commission for England, London: Senior Cathedrals Officer and Duty Secretary, ref. C2216-313-1
Salary £39,764 to £44,088; closing date 11 March 2013

Our Fellow Maggie Goodall has been appointed Education Officer at the SPAB, and her successor is now sought to lead the cathedrals team within the Cathedral and Church Buildings Division and ensure the smooth and timely discharge of all the Commission’s statutory and wider functions.

University of Edinburgh: Chair of Celtic Languages, Literatures, History and Antiquities, ref. 010563G
Professorial scale; closing date 14 March 2013

The University of Edinburgh seeks a successor to Professor William Gillies. Scholars in the broad field of Celtic Studies, and with a willingness to encourage Scottish Gaelic Studies, with a proven international record of teaching, research and publication, are encouraged to apply. Informal enquiries regarding the post may be made to Professor Dorothy Miell, Head of the College of Humanities and Social Science.

Sir John Soane’s Museum, London: Director
Salary £65,000 to £70,000; closing date 18 March 2013

The Trustees wish to appoint an outstanding Director for this unique museum, to succeed our Fellow Tim Knox, who has been appointed Director of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. The Director is accountable to the Trustees for all aspects of the Museum’s day-to-day and longer term functioning, including planning for the future.

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