For more than forty years Nicholas Brooks has been at the forefront of research into early medieval Britain. In order to honour the achievements of one of the leading figures in Anglo-Saxon studies, this volume brings together essays by an internationally renowned group of scholars on four themes that the honorand has made his own: myths, rulership, church and charters. Myth and rulership are addressed in articles on the early history of Wessex, Ã†thelflÃ¦d of Mercia and the battle of Brunanburh; contributions concerned with charters explore the means for locating those hitherto lost, the use of charters in the study of place-names, their role as instruments of agricultural improvement, and the reasons for the decline in their output immediately after the Norman Conquest. Nicholas Brooks's long-standing interest in the church of Canterbury is reflected in articles on the Kentish minster of Reculver, which became a dependency of the church of Canterbury, on the role of early tenth-century archbishops in developing coronation ritual, and on the presentation of Archbishop Dunstan as a prophet. Other contributions provide case studies of saints' cults with regional and international dimensions, examining a mass for St Birinus and dedications to St Clement, while several contributions take a wider perspective, looking at later interpretations of the Anglo-Saxon past, both in the Anglo-Norman and more modern periods. This stimulating and wide-ranging collection will be welcomed by the many readers who have benefited from Nicholas Brooks's own work, or who have an interest in the Anglo-Saxon past more generally. It is an outstanding contribution to early medieval studies.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction: myth, rulership, church and charters in the work of Nicholas Brooks, Julia Barrow; Nicholas Brooks at Birmingham, Christopher Dyer; Anglo-Saxon origin legends, Barbara Yorke; A nearly, but wrongly, forgotten historian of the Dark Ages, James Campbell; Anglo-Saxon charters: lost and found, Simon Keynes; Reculver Minster and its early charters, Susan Kelly; Stour in Ismere, Margaret Gelling; Was there an agricultural revolution in Anglo-Saxon England?, Alex Burghart and Andrew Wareham; The Annals of Ã†thelflÃ¦d: annals, history and politics in early 10th-century England, Pauline Stafford; The first use of the 2nd Anglo-Saxon Ordo, Janet L. Nelson; Where English becomes British: rethinking contexts for Brunanburh, Sarah Foot; Archbishop Dunstan: a prophet in politics?, Catherine Cubitt; A mass for St Birinus in an Anglo-Saxon missal from the Scandinavian mission-field, Alicia CorrÃªa; The Saint Clement dedications at Clementhorpe and Pontefract castle: Anglo-Scandinavian or Norman?, Barbara E. Crawford; England and the Norman myth, Nick Webber; What happened to ecclesiastical charters in England 1066-c1100?, Julia Barrow; Nicholas Brooks: a list of publications; Index.
`This excellent collection comprises essays from many of the foremost current scholars of Anglo-Saxon England. Like Nicholas Brooks's own works they focus on politics, charter scholarship, and the construction of historical memory, and range across the whole period between the fifth and twelfth centuries. An insightful and imaginative piece by Yorke reconstructs on the origin-legends likely to have been formulated in the unrecorded pagan period. There is a certain emphasis on tenth-century politics, including major contributions on Ã†thelflaed (Stafford), Ã†thelstan (Nelson and Foot) and Dunstan (Cubitt). Campbell's historiographical essay on E.W. Robertson, a Victorian scholar who is almost never read but who anticipated all the best ideas of the Anglo-Saxonists who have never read him, is a revelation. This is exciting and original scholarship of the highest quality.' John Blair, The Queen's College Oxford, UK 'This volume offers an affectionate tribute to a well-loved scholar from distinguished friends, colleagues and former students. The breadth of its scope reflects the exceptional disciplinary range of its honorand. Students and teachers of Anglo-Saxon history will find material here to entertain, inform, and challenge them.' Julia Crick, University of Exeter, UK ’This Festschrift aims to cover the honorand’s research interests as they appear in the title. This is an ambitious aim, given the wide range of these interests, but an aim which has been splendidly achieved in the present collection of essays.’ English Historical Review ’The festschrift honouring the esteemed Nicholas Brooks truly befits the honoree. ... The fourteen essays that follow make significant contributions to early English history.’ Revue d'Histoire Ecclésiastique ’The collection stands as a fine tribute to the influential contributions of the honorand.’ Early Medieval Europe