IMC 2017: Sessions

Session 613: Origo gentis: The Origin Legends of Medieval Europe, II

Tuesday 4 July 2017, 11.15-12.45

Organisers:Ben Guy, Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic, University of Cambridge
Rebecca Thomas, Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic, University of Cambridge
Moderator/Chair:Charles Insley, School of Arts, Languages & Cultures, University of Manchester
Paper 613-aBrython and Saesson: The Development of Origin Legends in 10th-Century Wales
(Language: English)
Rebecca Thomas, Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic, University of Cambridge
Index terms: Historiography - Medieval, Language and Literature - Celtic, Language and Literature - Comparative, Language and Literature - Latin
Paper 613-bOut of Scandza: The Enduring Myth of the Gothic Saxons
(Language: English)
Catalin Taranu, Institute for Medieval Studies, University of Leeds
Index terms: Historiography - Medieval, Language and Literature - Old English, Language and Literature - Latin, Medievalism and Antiquarianism
Paper 613-cGlobalising Ireland: Universal History and the Irish World Chronicle
(Language: English)
Máire Ní Mhaonaigh, Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic, University of Cambridge
Index terms: Biblical Studies, Historiography - Medieval, Language and Literature - Celtic, Language and Literature - Latin
Abstract

It was a universal practice to record stories about the origins of peoples, kingdoms, and dynasties in the middle ages. These stories enabled individuals to locate themselves and their societies within a larger historical and mythological context. There are certain features common to the origin legends of different peoples and regions, such as genealogy and migration, which served an aetiological function in helping people understand the present as an outcome of the past. Origin legends were not always consistent with each other however, as they were often used to press conflicting claims. These three sessions explore aspects of origin legends from across medieval western Europe.