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IMC 2023: Sessions

Session 1043: Keeping Healthy on Crusade: The De regimine et via itineris et fine peregrinantium of Adam of Cremona

Wednesday 5 July 2023, 09.00-10.30

Sponsor:Institute for Medieval Studies, University of Leeds
Organiser:Joanna Phillips, School of Law, University of Leeds
Moderator/Chair:Alex Bamji, School of History, University of Leeds
Paper 1043-aA Context for Adam of Cremona
(Language: English)
Peregrine Horden, Department of History, Royal Holloway, University of London
Joanna Phillips, School of Law, University of Leeds
Index terms: Crusades, Medicine
Paper 1043-bFinding Adam: Methodological Challenges and Historiographical Resources of Translation
(Language: English)
Francesca Petrizzo, School of History, University of Leeds
Index terms: Language and Literature - Latin, Medicine

Nestled in a miscellany manuscript housed in the library of the University of Marburg is a unique text. Written by Adam of Cremona, court doctor to Emperor Frederick II, the text is a regimen of health: instructions for the Emperor to preserve his health while travelling on crusade in the first half of the 13th century. The text is unique in the corpus of crusader texts and novel in the corpus of medical literature, as a very early example of a specialised regimen of health written for an individual in specific circumstances (travel, pilgrimage, and crusade). Yet this text has until very recently virtually escaped scholarly attention, a situation not helped by the lack of a modern scholarly edition and translation into modern vernaculars.

This session marks the beginning of a project to translate Adam's text into English for the first time, based on the forthcoming new critical edition. Peregrine Horden and Joanna Phillips, who have worked on the history of the crusades, health, and mobility in the Mediterranean, will situate Adam's work in the context of the emerging genre of specialised regimina and matters of health while crusading, as well as the particular situation of intellectual life at Frederick II's court. Francesca Petrizzo, an experienced Latinist will discuss literary and historiographical strategies for approaching a complex and little-known text, and the challenge of discovering the authorial voice to produce a faithful translation for this exceptional text. Regretfully, Laura Esposito, is not able to attend the session as previously advertised. The text was first edited by Fritz Hönger in 1913 but the edition is incomplete, heavily amended, and does not conform to modern editorial standards. Esposito's important work in preparing a new critical edition to the standard required for modern academic study is a crucial underpinning to this project, and the key aspects of her work will be incorporated into Petrizzo's paper. Both papers of the session will be expanded and lively audience discussion will be encouraged.