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March 25, 2009

Medieval Outreach: Making a Medieval Book

On Wednesday, 18 March 2009, UMN History graduate students Philip Grace and Basit Qureshi traveled to Cambridge-Isanti High School in Cambridge, MN to present our first "Making a Medieval Book" Outreach program of the year.

Social Studies teacher Donna Ferber's two classes welcomed Philip and Basit, and enjoyed both learning about book construction in the middle ages, and the medieval dress worn by the two presenters.

Ms. Ferber wrote us with her impressions:
I just wanted to thank you for helping to set up the visit by Basit and Philip. It went really well! They were engaging speakers who knew how to interest a teenage audience. The visuals were very helpful, and everyone--including me!--learned a lot. The costumes were a hit as well. All in all, the experience has been entirely positive for me and my students. Some of them talked the next day about how much they enjoyed the visit. Thank you for helping me to make history real to my students.

We look forward to more successful Outreach presentations this spring!

Trivia--Week of 25 April 2009

The life of Alexander the Great, written in Czech in the late 13th or early 14th century, is known as what?

Answer: The Alexandreis, based on a Latin version of Alexander’s life.

Please send trivia responses in email with the subject line “trivia” directly to gabriel gryffyn (ggryffyn.cms@gmail.com) by noon on Wednesday 1 April.

March 23, 2009

Medieval Colloquium: Friday 27 March, 12:00pm

The members of the Medieval and Early Modern Research Group invite you to join them for their Annual Spring Colloquium. Three graduate students will present short selections of their work, a
question and answer session will follow, light lunch provided.

What: The Medieval and Early Modern Research Group (MEMRG)'s
Annual Spring Colloquium
When: This Friday 27 March 2009, 12:00pm
Where: Pillsbury Hall, 110

Our three presenters are:

Adam Oberlin (German, Scandinavian, and Dutch)
"Wandering Glosses for Gothic runa and Their Old English Cognates."

Eric Carlson (English)
"Drinking, speaking, and acting in Beowulf."

Elissa Hansen (English) "The 'Pilgrim Way': Travel, Ecclesiastical
Authority, and Regional Identity in Two Eighth-Century Hagiographies."

Please join us for an intellectually stimulating afternoon.

Generously sponsored by the Office of Student Unions & Activities and Coke.

March 18, 2009

Trivia--Week of 18 March 2009

Ermengard, the first wife of Louis the Pious, died while traveling to what city along with her husband and the court?

Please send trivia responses in email with the subject line “trivia” directly to gabriel gryffyn (ggryffyn.cms@gmail.com) by noon on Wednesday 25 March.

Answer: She was on route to Tours, but took sick in Angers, where she died.l

March 11, 2009

Trivia--Week of 11 March

What famous thing, depicting the Norman invasion of England in 1066, was parodied during the opening sequence of The Simpsons?

Please send trivia responses in email with the subject line “trivia” directly to gabriel gryffyn (ggryffyn.cms@gmail.com) by noon on Wednesday 18 March.

Stephen Martin and Steve Matthews appointed to the Graduate Faculty in Medieval Studies

The Center is pleased to welcome Professors Stephen Martin (French--Morris) and Steve Matthews (History--Duluth) to the Medieval Studies Graduate Faculty.

Professor Martin joined the faculty at Morris in 2007, becoming Assistant Professor in 2008, when he also received his PhD from the University of Virginia. He is at work on a digital edition of “Aucassin et Nicolete.” His areas of specialization are Old French, Paleography, Codicology, Editorial Theory, and Early Medieval Literature.

Professor Matthews is Assistant Professor of History at Duluth and was just named a McKnight-Land Grant Professor for 2009-2011. His book Theology and Science in the Thought of Francis Bacon was published by Ashgate in 2008. A number of his courses, including on the history of Christianity and the history of Science, cover the Middle Ages.

March 4, 2009

Trivia--Week of 4 March 2009

In “The Short Lay of Sigurd,” what does Brynhild do when she hears that the man she loves is dead?

Please send trivia responses in email with the subject line “trivia” directly to gabriel gryffyn (ggryffyn.cms@gmail.com) by noon on Wednesday 11 March.

Answer: She laughed.

March 2, 2009

Medieval Life: A One-Day Conference

Join us on Saturday, April 4, 2009 for a sampler of presentations specifically targeted to undergraduates, but of interest to many others about the fascinating and often unexpected world of the Middle Ages.

Place: The President's Room, Coffman Memorial Union
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities East Bank Campus

Time: 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Schedule (subject to change)

10:00am - Registration & Welcome
10:15am - Introduction to Exhibit of Medieval Books
10:30am - On the Road with the Crusades
11:15am - Food, Feasting & Fasting
12:00pm - Lunch
1:15pm - Beowulf: Fact, Fiction, & Film
2:00pm - Exploring a Medieval City
2:45pm - Readers' Theatre: The Chase: Harts & Hearts

To reserve space for you or your students, please contact Pat Eldred (PMEldred@stkate.edu)

Deadline: March 18, 2009

Sponsored by the Medieval Research Group, Metro State University, and the University of Minnesota's Center for Medieval Studies and James Ford Bell Library.

Medieval Mosaic: Spain & Morocco

Medieval Mosaic: Spain & Morocco is a Global Seminar. Global Seminars are short-term study abroad programs led by University of Minnesota faculty. Instruction is in English by UMN French & Italian Professor Susan Noakes.

Through lectures, readings, and various excursions students will take an interdisciplinary approach to learning about medieval studies. History, literature, visual art, and music will be explored in order to develop a broad sense of how cultural contact worked in the Middle Ages.

This course will examine how the Iberian Peninsula's earliest inhabitants, the Celts, encountered the Romans, as well as the changes that came with the arrival of the Western Goths. Students will explore how the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian cultures coexisted together from the 8th to the 15th centuries.

Prior to departure, students attend a pre-departure orientation and receive pre-departure readings and assignments. Classes consist of lectures, discussions, and excursions. Students will journal daily and develop a creative project or essay as their final project.

Travel the routes and explore the cities of medieval Spain and Morocco. Vast movements of population during the "Middle" Ages, approximately 350 to 1500, often led to tensions when one group met another. On this program you will discover the ways people dealt with these interactions, the reasons these encounters differed, the results of various cultural strategies, and lessons that can emerge for today's global migrations and diasporas.

Students receive 3-credits of 3000 level coursework during this May term course.

Deadline for applications has been extended to 13 March 2009! For further information and applications, see


Kalamazoo Van Update

If you are a student traveling to the International Congress on Medieval Studies and would like to ride along with a fun group of us in the CMS-sponsored van, please RSVP to gabriel gryffyn (ggryffyn.cms@gmail.com).

The cost for the van will be 50$ per student. This fee is waived if you would like to volunteer to help drive; we'll take the first three volunteers. Please RSVP and arrange a time to drop off your fee by 1 April 2009.

Institute for Advanced Studies Symposium-Jody Enders

IAS is proud to announce that Professor Enders from the Departments of
Theater and French & Italian at the University of California at Santa
Barbara will join them to speak about "The Devil in the Medieval Theatrical
Flesh." Friday, 6 March 12:00-1:30pm, 125 Nolte Center.

Co-Sponsored by the Center for Medieval Studies.