Frankish? Irish? Other? The Problem with Labels

How and why do you label an idea as belonging to a particular culture? I have been looking at a ninth-century collection of materials on history, calendars and the Easter reckoning which highlights the difficulties in answering this question. The collection (Milan, Biblioteca Ambrosiana, H 150 inf) is known as the ‘Bobbio Computus’ [1] because… Continue reading Frankish? Irish? Other? The Problem with Labels

Early Medieval Futures

Yesterday I met THE Peter Brown. He was receiving an honorary degree from the University of St Andrews because he is quite simply one of the greatest historians of the last forty years. (The degree was bestowed on him by Sir Menzies Campbell and the other honorand was Lyse Doucet, the BBC’s chief international correspondent… Continue reading Early Medieval Futures

Charlemagne’s Death Day

Charlemagne died 1200 years ago yesterday. Despite the great emperor lacking ‘brand recognition’ (apparently – although he was mentioned in Dr Who) people got excited. Some of these people were in Aachen, which made sense because that’s where he is buried. Some of them were in Frankfurt, where there was singing but no emperor. In… Continue reading Charlemagne’s Death Day

Offa’s Dinar

In the middle of semester, there's not much time to keep on top of Merovingianworld. But in the meantime here is a nice short blogpost by someone else, featuring lovely pictures of Offa's dinar: I remember once googling for an image of this coin and finding a great conspiracy website about how Offa had… Continue reading Offa’s Dinar

Charlemagne Fun for 2013/14

Dame Jinty Nelson is going to be giving a lecture, 'Charlemagne and Europe', in London on Tuesday 12th November (details here). The next few months should see a significant outpouring of Charlem agne-related things in time for the 1200th anniverary of his death in January 814. Johannes Fried and Stefan Weinfurter both have new biographies… Continue reading Charlemagne Fun for 2013/14