Tag Archives: New books

New Book roundup: Boydell & Brewer, 2018

Boydell & Brewer have announced their new publications for 2018. You can see the full list here: https://boydellandbrewer.com/media/wysiwyg/Catalogues/Medieval_Studies_Catalogue_-_2018.pdf 

Here are four that were featured in the Boydell & Brewer: Medieval Herald 32.

Frisians and their North Sea Neighbours
Frisians and their North Sea Neighbour
Although Frisians neighboured Anglo-Saxons, Franks, Saxons and Danes in north-western Europe, the details of their lives, communities and culture have remained little-known. Why is this? Well, largely because Frisia and Frisian have meant different things to different people through time, and partly because Frisians had no tradition of writing until relatively late. We trust that this new collection, edited by John Hines and Nelleke IJssennagger, will help change that and broaden knowledge of and interest in the previously mysterious Frisians.
Church Monuments in South Wales, c.1200-1547, by Dr Rhianydd Biebrach
Church Monuments in South Wales, c.1200-1547, by Dr Rhianydd Biebrach
Despite the modest distances that separate them, monuments in south Wales can differ greatly from those in north Wales or the west of England. And although they can tell us much about religious and cultural practices of the time and place, they have until now been sadly understudied. Rhianydd Biebrach explains their special significance, reveals her two favourite monuments and how she undertook her extensive research (losing her dining table in the process). And why we should all (continue to) be grateful to Michael Praed.
The Saint and the Saga Hero- Hagiography and Early Icelandic Literature
The Saint and the Saga Hero: Hagiography and Early Icelandic Literature, by Dr Siân E. Grønlie
While they might not seem to be natural literary bedfellows, Siân E. Grønlie’s new book explains the profound impact that the medieval saint’s life had on the saga literature of Iceland. Predating sagas by several centuries, the Latin lives of saints could, in some ways, be said to provide a model for the (anti-)heroes of the later written sagas, though these protagonists had of course usually led largely un-saintly lives. Here Dr Grønlie provides a quick introduction to both genres and guides us through the results of their intermingling.
The Medieval Merlin Tradition in France and Italy
The Medieval Merlin Tradition in France and Italy: Prophecy, Paradox, and Translatio, by Dr Laura Chuhan Campbell
Dr Campbell uses the figure of Merlin to demonstrate how language and culture shaped different takes on the same character and story. And what an ideal focus he makes, for within him texts, languages, events real and fictional all converged. Crucially, the language barrier between France and Italy proved highly porous and the fluidity of cultural exchange brought new translations with new narrative possibilities. Dr Campbell explains the remarkable process.
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New Books: ‘Il Maestro di Nola’ and ‘Medieval manuscripts: Ghent University Library’

Il Maestro di Nola. Un vertice impareggiabile del tardogotico a Napoli e in Campania, by EMANUELE ZAPPASOD

ISBN: 978-8874613465

Description:
En los últimos años se ha puesto de manifiesto, cada vez con más claridad, que el patrimonio artístico del sur de Italia puede compararse, por la calidad, importancia y carga poética, de igual a igual con las obras producidas por otros centros cuyo valor ha sido ponderado desde hace mucho tiempo por una larga tradición histórica.

La Galería Sarti siempre ha mantenido vivo el enfoque en el arte de esta tierra llena de creatividad, que en la época medieval y renacentista constituyó un animado cruce de diferentes culturas y el centro de una espesa circulación mediterránea que incluía Sicilia, Cerdeña, Liguria, pero también Francia y España. Una similar pluralidad de influencias que se mezclan con la tradición local ha fomentado el nacimiento de un lenguaje fascinante, rico de una abrumadora expresividad y, al mismo tiempo, de una elegancia refinada.

El libro -con el estudio específico de Emanuele Zappasodi y el de Virginia Caramico sobre el contexto artístico del Reino de Nápoles entre los siglos XIV y XV – presenta el redescubrimiento de una hermosa pintura, hasta ahora desconocida, del pintor conocido como Maestro di Nola, un raro artífice que, a juzgar por la alta calidad de sus obras, supuso realmente la cumbre incomparable del gótico tardío en Nápoles y Campania.

El volumen -destinado a ser en el futuro un valioso punto de referencia para futuros estudios- permite dibujar con mayor claridad la trayectoria del artista y arrojar nueva luz sobre algunos episodios importantes de la pintura a finales del gótico en Campania.

More information here.

 

Medieval manuscripts. Ghent University Library

Medieval manuscripts: Ghent University Library, by Albert Derolez
ISBN: 9789461613813 ISBN-13: 9789461613813

Description:

This is the first catalogue to provide metadata on all medieval manuscripts in the collection of Ghent University Library. The catalogue offers full descriptions of texts and provides codicological data for all handwritten books and archival documents on parchment or paper, including fragments, dating prior to c. 1530. Giving all the essential information in a nutshell and in a uniform way opens numerous ways to new research with these unique relics. Albert Derolez (1934) is Curator emeritus of Manuscripts and Early Printed Books at Ghent University Library. He taught for many years palaeography and codicology at the Free Universities of Brussels and at several American universities. President of the Comité International de Paléographie Latine 1995-2005. Editor-in-Chief of the series Corpus Catalogorum Belgii. The Medieval Booklists of the Southern Low Countries (1994-2016). Editor of the Liber Floridus of Lambert of Saint-Omer (1968), the Liber divinorum operum of Hildegard of Bingen (1996), and other medieval texts. Author of books on medieval libraries, codicology and palaeography.

More information here.

Book round up: L’aventure des cathédrales, Le cloître de Saint-Génis-des-Fontaines, La scultura in Valnerina tra i secoli XIV e XVI: Scoperte e nuove proposte, Cisterciensi: Arte e storia & Byzantine Art and Italian Panel Painting: The Virgin and Child Hodegetria and the Art of Chrysography

Five recent publications that may be of interest to our readers:

aventure-cathedrales-289x330

GÉRARD DENIZEAU.  L’aventure des cathédrales, Larousse, 2015, 128 p. ISBN: 978-2035923455

The story of cathedral construction, told through the involvement of the artisans (carpenters, blacksmiths, masons, masters of stained glass and more).

 

 

 

scultura-valnerina-239x330DIEGO MATTEI. La scultura in Valnerina tra i secoli XIV e XVI: Scoperte e nuove proposte. Dal Formichiere, 2015, 103 p. ISBN: 978-8898428564

New research into the sculptural traditions of the Valnerina region,  containing  many hitherto little known or unpublished works.

 

 

 

cloitre-genis-184x330GÉRALDINE MALLET. Le cloître de Saint-Génis-des-Fontaines, Trabucaire, 2015, 80 p.ISBN: 978-2849742167

A study of the medieval cloister of Saint-Génis-des-Fontaines, often described as a “jewel” of the Romanesque.

 

 

 

 

cisterciensi-arte-253x330TERRYL N. KINDER; ROBERTO CASSANELLI (ed.). Cisterciensi. Arte e storia, Jaca Book, 2015, 432 p. ISBN: 978-8816604414

An analysis of Cistercian art, culture, contribution and life from the twelfth century to the present, with 40 contributions from international scholars.

 

 

 

byzantine-hodegetria-238x330JAROSLAV FOLDA. Byzantine Art and Italian Panel Painting: The Virgin and Child Hodegetria and the Art of Chrysography, Cambridge University Press, 2015, 424 p. ISBN: 978-1107010239

Tracing the transformation of the Hodegetria, from the Byzantine virgin as human mother of God, to the Italian Madonna enthroned as Queen of Heaven.

Book roundup: Spring 2015

Here’s just five books we’ve seen have come out in 2015 that might be of interest to our readers. We’d always welcome a review of one if you have opinions: email us!

9781782977827_2[1]Britain’s Medieval Episcopal Thrones by Charles Tracy with Andrew Budge (Oxbow Books)

This book is the first major investigation of a subject of seminal importance in the study of church history and archaeology. The two stone thrones, at Wells and Durham, the three timber monuments, at Exeter, St Davids and Hereford, and the mid-14th-century bishop’s chair at Lincoln, all come under a searching empirical enquiry.

The Exeter throne is the largest and most impressive in Europe. It is a distinguished innovatory example of the English Decorated style, with antecedents passing back to the court of Edward I. It exemplifies most of the historical and formal strands that suffuse the entire book – visual appearance, distinctiveness within the building, prestige, construction, stylistic context, finance, and the patronage and personal role of the bishop himself; as well as the subtler issues of the personal and collective politics of bishop and chapter, the monument’s liturgical applications, its relationship with the cathedral’s relics, its symbolism and what it tells us about the aspirations of the institution within the existing ecclesiastical hierarchy.

The thrones also reveal much about the personal circumstances of an individual bishop, and where he stood on the scale of a good diocesan on the one hand, and ambitious politician on the other, as exemplified at Exeter and Durham.

The text is by the art historian, Dr Charles Tracy, a seasoned expert on church furniture both in Britain and on the continent of Europe. The chapter on the stone thrones was prepared by Andrew Budge who is currently preparing a Ph.D thesis on ‘English Chantry Churches’ at Birkbeck College. The polychromy authority, Eddie Sinclair, spent many hours on the scaffold to bring forward her remarkable report on the Exeter throne. Her full report is to be published online.The Exeter throne is also interpreted by the established timber conservation practitioner, Hugh Harrison, and the St Davids throne by the experienced draughtsman, Peter Ferguson. In an age of the CAD, his meticulous measured drawings of the Exeter and St Davids monuments are one of the most remarkable features of book. The architect, Paul Woodfield prepared the drawings for the Lincoln chair.

9780198201571_450[1]The Art of Solidarity in the Middle Ages: Guilds in England 1250-1550 by Gervase Rosser (Oxford University Press)

Guilds and fraternities, voluntary associations of men and women, proliferated in medieval Europe. The Art of Solidarity in the Middle Ages explores the motives and experiences of the many thousands of men and women who joined together in these family-like societies. Rarely confined to a single craft, the diversity of guild membership was of its essence. Setting the English evidence in a European context, this study is not an institutional history, but instead is concerned with the material and non-material aims of the brothers and sisters of the guilds.

Gervase Rosser addresses the subject of medieval guilds in the context of contemporary debates surrounding the identity and fulfilment of the individual, and the problematic question of his or her relationship to a larger society. Unlike previous studies, The Art of Solidarity in the Middle Ages does not focus on the guilds as institutions but on the social and moral processes which were catalysed by participation. These bodies founded schools, built bridges, managed almshouses, governed small towns, shaped religious ritual, and commemorated the dead, perceiving that association with a fraternity would be a potential catalyst of personal change. Participants cultivated the formation of new friendships between individuals, predicated on the understanding that human fulfilment depended upon a mutually transformative engagement with others. The peasants, artisans, and professionals who joined the guilds sought to change both their society and themselves. The study sheds light on the conception and construction of society in the Middle Ages, and suggests further that this evidence has implications for how we see ourselves.

9781780232942[1]The Riddle of the Image: The Secret Science of Medieval Art by Spike Bucklow (Reaktion Books)

The Riddle of the Image explores the materials and methods that lie behind the production of historic paintings. Spike Bucklow, who works as a research scientist and restorer of paintings, analyses some of the most well-known and important medieval works of art, as well as less familiar artworks, to throw new light on art production techniques that have been lost for centuries. By examining the science of the materials, as well as the techniques of medieval artists, he adds new aspects to our understanding and appreciation of these paintings, and of medieval art in general.

The case studies include one of the most popular paintings in the National Gallery, London, and the altarpiece in front of which English monarchs were crowned for centuries. Many of the technical details presented here are published for the first time and some others have only been featured in exhibition catalogues and specialist academic papers. The author is internationally recognized for his work in the scientific examination of paintings and he also draws upon the work of other internationally recognized specialists. While intensive research into artists’ materials and methods has been undertaken for several decades, this book is the first intended for a general audience that examines the subject in depth.

9780226169125[1]Seeing Sodomy in the Middle Ages by Robert Mills (Chicago University Press)

During the Middle Ages in Europe, some sexual and gendered behaviors were labeled “sodomitical” or evoked the use of ambiguous phrases such as the “unmentionable vice” or the “sin against nature.” How, though, did these categories enter the field of vision? How do you know a sodomite when you see one?

In Seeing Sodomy in the Middle Ages, Robert Mills explores the relationship between sodomy and motifs of vision and visibility in medieval culture, on the one hand, and those categories we today call gender and sexuality, on the other. Challenging the view that ideas about sexual and gender dissidence were too confused to congeal into a coherent form in the Middle Ages, Mills demonstrates that sodomy had a rich, multimedia presence in the period—and that a flexible approach to questions of terminology sheds new light on the many forms this presence took. Among the topics that Mills covers are depictions of the practices of sodomites in illuminated Bibles; motifs of gender transformation and sex change as envisioned by medieval artists and commentators on Ovid; sexual relations in religious houses and other enclosed spaces; and the applicability of modern categories such as “transgender,” “butch” and “femme,” or “sexual orientation” to medieval culture.

Taking in a multitude of images, texts, and methodologies, this book will be of interest to all scholars, regardless of discipline, who engage with gender and sexuality in their work.

130676227895079625Lincoln%20Cathedral%20Bio%20resize%20100[1]Lincoln Cathedral: The Biography of a Great Building by Jonathan Foyle (SCALA publishing)

A fascinating and personal study of one of Britain’s greatest cathedrals, illustrated with specially commissioned photography, comparative and archival images, and the author’s own plans and drawings. Lincoln is one of Britain’s greatest cathedrals, its three towers and formidable west front dominating the surrounding plains from its commanding hilltop position. It was largely built over the course of a century, up to the completion of the glorious Angel Quire in 1280.

Architectural historian and broadcaster Jonathan Foyle regards Lincoln Cathedral as an old and valued friend and writes with deep knowledge and passion about the developing character of the building. He shows how innovative and experimental the grand thirteenth-century rebuild was, influenced not only by spectacular contemporary work at Canterbury, but also by changing political and spiritual values, and by the continental travels and experience of individual bishops.

Did we miss any new books that you’re enjoying? Email us at medievalartresearch@gmail.com to let us know about it? Are you an author that’s publishing a new book of interest to medieval art historians and want a plug? Let us be your socket!