Session 203: Places, Faces, and Books in Medieval France
Monday 9 July 2007, 14.15-15.45
|Moderator/Chair:||Donna Mayer-Martin, Department of Music History, Southern Methodist University, Texas|
|Paper 203-a||The Kings of Saint-Denis: Memory, Place, and Political Identity|
Index terms: Historiography - Medieval, Language and Literature - French or Occitan, Politics and Diplomacy
|Paper 203-b||Between Reality and Imagination: Portraits in Early 14th-Century Books of Hours|
Index terms: Art History - Painting, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Women’s Studies
|Paper 203-c||City of Commerce, City of Culture: Provins, the Forgotten Capital of Medieval Champagne?|
Index terms: Daily Life, Economics - Trade, Language and Literature - French or Occitan
Abstract paper a: The connection between ‘place’ and ‘memory’ in the Middle Ages was quite profound and often exploited for various kinds of political propaganda. It could be an important aspect of political legitimacy, ethnicity, and religious identity. This was especially true for churches and abbeys – St Peter’s, Santiago de Compostella, and the Abbey of Saint-Denis to name a few.
Abstract paper b: Portraits of book owners appearing in the margins of manuscripts or within illustrations, is a new feature developing in the 13th century in Books of Hours. Interestingly, most portraits from the 13-14th century depict women, a fact that reflects the increase of literacy among lay women of medieval aristocracy. Although some research has been done regarding literacy and gender, none has considered the sources of these portraits, their meaning and the way they had been used. I propose to study some examples from northern France, within their social-urban context.
Abstract paper c: This paper discusses the most salient characteristics of 12th-century Provins, one of the twin capitals, along with Troyes, of Henri the Liberal’s Champagne. Yet despite the prominence of Provins as a multicultural commercial and artistic centre, and as one of the most important sites of the burgeoning Champenois textile industry, most histories of medieval Champagne neglect Provins. Although Provins was inscribed on the World Heritage List of UNESCO in 2001, it remains a relatively unfamiliar place name for most people, and even neglected by the majority of historians of medieval comital Champagne. Thus, this paper will also explore possible reasons for the neglect of Provins by historians.