Embodying Dynasties II: cults, politics, and genealogies

As my earlier blog post laid out, my research project as part of After Empire looks at royal mausolea as sites of historical memory in the tenth and early eleventh centuries. As we are already almost one year into the project I thought I’d give an update on how my own research is going. Over…

Who made it an ‘age of iron’? Flodoard of Rheims and his ‘Annals’

One of the most interesting things about studying the tenth century is the great variety and originality of its written sources. While the period’s image problem has long roots in the perceived dearth of available evidence, surviving tenth-century texts often seem to defy typologies and literary models, which are often drawn from other, better-studied eras.…

Using the past in Hrotsvitha of Gandersheim’s ‘Primordia’

The Primordia de coenobiis Gandesheimensis of Hrotsvitha of Gandersheim, likely composed in the 970s, is often used by historians as an excellent example of female commemoration – that is, how early medieval women, especially in tenth-century Saxony, preserved the memory of their family’s history. In this case, the commemoration came from a convent of canonesses founded…