Author Archives: Ann Buckley

About Ann Buckley

Research Fellow, Centre for Medieval History,Trinity College Dublin Coordinator, Forum for Medieval and Renaissance Studies in Ireland (FMRSI)

Event: ‘On the Ten-Stringed Psaltery’: Musical instruments as symbols in the Middle Ages, NUIG, 24 May




Musical instruments as symbols in the Middle Ages

Thursday 24 May, 10am–4pm

The Bridge, Hardiman Research Building (NUI, Galway)


Musical instruments abound in medieval iconography and literature, so much so that modern craftsmen were able to build replicas of medieval instruments working from images and texts. But did medieval artists and writers always intend to depict or describe real instruments?  In this colloquium, five speakers will explore a number of medieval iconographic and textual case-studies where musical instruments are not treated at all, or not only, as real objects, but rather as symbols and allegories referring to poetic, scholarly or religious notions…

Speakers:  Jacopo Bisagni (NUI, Galway); Ann Buckley (Trinity College, Dublin); Isabelle Marchesin (Institut National d’Histoire de l’Art, Paris); Michael Shields (NUI, Galway); Olivier Szerwiniack (Université de Picardie Jules Verne, Amiens).

Further information: 




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CFP: Conflicting Chronologies in the Pre-modern World, UCD, 4-6 Oct 201

Deadline for proposals: 15 June 2018

Conflicting Chronologies in the Pre-modern World: Measuring Time from Antiquity to the Middle Ages and Renaissance

Humanities Institute, University College Dublin, 4-6 October 2018

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A One-Day Conference: Trouvères Transposed. Sounding Conversations Between Chansons and Their Relatives

A one-day interdisciplinary conference to be held at King’s College, Cambridge, on 5 May 2018 will explore the circulation of lyrical and musical material as a species of intertextual reference, rivalry, and engagement.  Quotation, both musical and textual, brings the chanson into dialogue with other genres, other languages, and other literary and musical spaces. The diversity of quotational practice and the variously opposing and cooperating forces of music and text are the theme of the event.

Proposals are invited for 20-minute papers from the fields of literature and musicology with a focus on troubadour song, trouvère song, or quotations of either repertory within other types of contemporaneous works.

Themes and topics might include:

  • Lyrics in narrative: the function of lyric in narrative forms and the refashioning of song in a non-lyric context.
  • Citation as performance practice: how far might performers go in evoking a different piece, style, or genre? Might some quotations be eliptical in manuscript, yet function as a performance direction?
  • Dialogue as dramatic narrative: what is the boundary between indirect and direct speech in lyric forms? How does quotation contribute to the dramatic sense of conquest, competition, or play?
  • Generative quotation: songs built around quotations and according to models. How do contrafaction, multi-author genres, and refrain quotation interact with the problem of origins? When can we talk of improvisation to an existing model, when of adopting tropes and formulae?
  • Citation and compilation: how does the scribal craft struggle with or build off of the re-use of material? Can we argue that links of this kind were as accessible to readers as they were to listeners?

Proposals of 200 to 300 words should be sent as an email attachment (in pdf or doc format) to the conference organisers at

They should include:


author’s name(s)

affiliation (where applicable)

author’s email address

The deadline for proposals is 22 February, 2018. Decisions will be communicated by early March.

Conference Committee:

Sam Barrett

Bill Burgwinkle

Nicholas Bleisch

Trouvères Transposed – Call for Papers


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Vacancy: Project Assistant DMLCS

Applications are invited for the position of Project Assistant for the Dictionary of Medieval Latin from Celtic Sources (DMLCS). Fixed Term Contract – 1 Year initially. Part time basis 0.8 FTE.

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Fitzjames Research Fellow in Medieval English Literature

Fitzjames Research Fellow in Medieval English Literature

Merton College, Oxford

Salary £29,819 p.a., plus a housing allowance of £10,000 p.a. or free accommodation

Merton College proposes to elect a Fitzjames Research Fellow in Medieval English Literature for four years commencing on 1 October 2017 or as soon as possible thereafter. This is a prestigious career development post which will provide a promising academic with opportunities to develop as researcher and university teacher.

The main duties of the post will be: to undertake innovative research in the broad areas of Old or Middle English; to contribute to the wider academic research projects in the University in Medieval English, including establishing productive research collaborations with other academics in Oxford or elsewhere; and to teach undergraduates reading English for an average of six weighted hours per week in full term. The postholder will be eligible for election as a Fellow of the College.

The successful applicant will hold, or be close to completing, a doctorate in a relevant subject area and demonstrate achievement (commensurate with the candidate’s career) in research in Old or Middle English at a standard which will contribute to and enhance the national and international profile of English at Oxford. The ability to provide effective tutorial teaching to high-achieving undergraduates is essential. The postholder will also need to demonstrate aptitude for a full range of college academic duties; the willingness to contribute to Merton as a member of its Governing Body; and commitment to a personal career development plan.

The duties and skills required are described in more detail in the further particulars which also contain details on eligibility criteria and how to apply. These are available at or from the Sub-Warden’s Secretary, Merton College, Oxford, OX1 4JD (e-mail: The closing date for applications is 8 June 2017. Interviews will be held in College on 20 June 2017. The Fellow will be entitled to free meals, medical insurance, research expenses and other benefits.

Merton College is an equal opportunities employer.

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Historical Approaches to Music: a One-Day Interdisciplinary Conference to be held at Trinity College, Oxford

Date of conference: 24th March 2017

Deadline for submission of abstracts: 13th January 2017

Scholars of both music and history have long accepted that each of their fields of study has much to offer the other. Musicologists regularly address the historical context of their subject matter, whilst historians increasingly seek to employ music in understanding cultural and political developments. The best of these works employ a critical, nuanced approach, examining a range of musical genres and modes of musical production with historical rigour. However, methodological interaction between the two fields is still limited, and often subject to lip service alone. Seen by many as a specialist topic, demanding a slightly inaccessible methodological approach, music is too frequently the lesser sibling of supposedly more accessible forms of culture, notably literature.

In order to discuss these issues, this one-day conference seeks to draw together historians and music scholars who are engaging in interdisciplinary research into history and music. In particular, it aims to encourage those taking a historical approach to the subject of music, and to test underlying assumptions in the historiographies of musical cultures. We invite proposals for individual 20 minute papers, lecture recitals, or longer group presentations (preference will be given to those with an interdisciplinary makeup). Additionally, we welcome suggestions for topics suitable for panel discussion.

Proposals may consider any aspect of music history, including but not limited to the following topics:

*Methods, Sources and Historiography*

  • How might historical methodologies enhance our understanding of musical cultures?
  • What can a wider range of primary source material tell us about the music history of a particular time and place?
  • How effectively and convincingly has music been employed as a historical source
  • How can musicologists present their work in a way that ensures it will be accessible and of interest to the wider historiographical discourse?


*Case Studies*

  • In what ways has music impacted upon historical figures and events?
  • How has historical context affected the nature of particular compositions and cultures?
  • What role does music play in the construction of historical narratives?
  • How might extramusical lines of inquiry shed new light on widely accepted views of events in music history?

Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words to by 13th January 2017.

*Travel Bursaries*

We are hoping to make a limited number of travel bursaries available to postgraduate students and Early Career Researchers. Priority will be given to those presenting papers and those without institutional travel support.

If you would like to be considered for financial support, please submit a statement of no more than 200 words with your abstract. In your statement, please explain how the travel bursary would be used, including the following information:

  • What funding, if any, do you expect to receive from your university/institution?
  • Estimate the travel costs you expect to incur in attending the conference.


Kind Regards,

Richard Parfitt

Maura Valenti

Frances K. Watson


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2016 UCD/Abbey Theatre Shakespeare Lectures

The UCD/Abbey Theatre Shakespeare Lectures aims to sustain an ongoing conversation about Shakespeare in Ireland – in performance, in books, in history.

Remembering and forgetting Shakespeare in 1916.

This talk addresses what it means to remember Shakespeare in 2016, and reflects on the forgetting that is also required: forgetting not only aspects of Shakespeare’s life, work and legacy, but also that of certain of his contemporaries, notably those who died in the same year (Cervantes, Beaumont) or whose significant publication (the Jonson folio) has been overshadowed in subsequent centuries by Shakespeare’s cultural dominance.

With Prof. Gordon McMullan (King’s College, London)

For further details please see the following link:


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