IMC 2016: Sessions

Session 1501: AD 716: Bede, Wearmouth-Jarrow, and Beyond, I

Thursday 7 July 2016, 09.00-10.30

Sponsor:Bedenet.com / Bede's World Museum, Jarrow
Organisers:Peter Darby, Department of History, University of Nottingham
Máirín MacCarron, Department of History, University of Sheffield
Moderator/Chair:Máirín MacCarron, Department of History, University of Sheffield
Paper 1501-aAccounts of Ceolfrith's Departure from Wearmouth-Jarrow
(Language: English)
Alan Thacker, Institute of Historical Research, University of London
Alan Thacker, Institute of Historical Research, University of London
Index terms: Ecclesiastical History, Language and Literature - Latin, Monasticism, Religious Life
Paper 1501-bThe Impact of 716 on the Community(ies) of Wearmouth-Jarrow
(Language: English)
Paul Hilliard, Mundelein Seminary, University of St Mary of the Lake, Illinois
Paul Hilliard, Mundelein Seminary, University of St Mary of the Lake, Illinois
Index terms: Ecclesiastical History, Monasticism
Abstract

716 was a particularly momentous year for Bede and his monastery at Wearmouth and Jarrow, and the thirteen-hundredth anniversary offers an appropriate reason to revisit it from a number of different scholarly angles. In 716 Bede was completing his momentous commentary on the Book of 1 Samuel, perhaps his densest and most complex exegetical work. Other short works were also completed at this time, including a tract on the resting places on the children of Israel and a treatise on Isaiah 24.22. A book of responses to 30 questions from Nothhelm, a priest of London, has also been assigned to this period. 716 was the year in which Ceolfrith, Bede’s abbot and mentor, left the community to make one last journey to Rome, dying en-route at the monastery of Langres in Northern Francia on 25 September. The year is therefore the terminus ante quem for the completion of the Codex Amiatinus, the oldest complete Vulgate Bible to survive intact, produced under Ceolfrith’s stewardship and taken with him on his final voyage. Changes were also taking place beyond Bede’s immediate environment which had significant implications for the political landscape: new kings acceded in Mercia (Æthelbald) and in Northumbria itself (Cenred); in both cases, the changes marked the end of long periods of dominance of the respective kingdoms by prominent royal families. Still further afield, in 716 the monastery of Iona finally accepted the method for calculating the date of Easter championed by Wearmouth-Jarrow following negotiations with a priest named Ecgberht; this event resonated especially strongly with Bede. In Rome, the new pope Gregory II was establishing himself having acceded in May of the previous year. The two linked sessions contain papers which further our understanding of this remarkable year.