The Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic, in association with Hughes Hall, was delighted to welcome Dr Alex Woolf, of the University of St Andrews, to deliver the 2012 Kathleen Hughes Memorial Lecture on Monday 30th April. To a packed audience, on a lovely sunny evening (after several days of relentless rain), Alex gave a succinct, engaging and up-to-date overview of scholarship on the nature and structures of the Church in the Pictish kingdoms up to the end of the ninth century. Having brought the audience into his intellectual fold, he then proceeded to make some very stimulating - and, to my mind, convincing - arguments regarding some sources for the iconography of late Pictish ecclesiastical art, and we certainly look forward to seeing those arguments developed in print next year.
Cambridge, Corpus Christi College MS 197B - a Northumbrian gospel-book whose stylistic influence is visible on many Pictish inscribed stones (image courtesy of the Parker Library, Corpus Christi College)
And speaking of things in print, we were pleased on Monday evening to celebrate the publication of two previous Hughes Memorial Lectures, in the presence of their authors, namely Professor Marie Therese Flanagan (Queen's University, Belfast), Reform in the Twelfth-Century Irish Church: A Revolution of Outlook? (the 2010 Hughes Memorial Lecture), and Professor Thomas Charles-Edwards (University of Oxford), St Patrick and the Landscape of Early Christian Ireland (the 2011 Hughes Memorial Lecture), which are now available to buy from the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic for the princely sum of £5 each.