Archives de catégorie : Écosse / Scotland

The Norman Edge: Identity and state formation on the frontiers of Europe

Responsables du projet/Project leaders : Keith Stringer (k.stringer@lancaster.ac.uk )

 

Établissements principaux/Main institutions : Lancaster University, Department of History

 

Description:

The Norman Edge: Identity and State-Formation on the Frontiers of Europe is a colloborative research project based in the History Department at Lancaster University. The project was funded by a major grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council between December 2008 and December 2011.

The research investigated the salient characteristics of Norman expansion from their northern French homeland to the frontiers of Christian Europe, assessing the relationships between medieval ‘state-formation’ and political identities. The project provided new insights into the processes of medieval western European expansion, state-formation and identity-construction, and sought to re-evaluate the political ontology of the Norman world.

The project addressed the historical development of political cultures in three areas on the periphery of the ‘Norman world’: middle Britain (northern England and southern Scotland), southern Italy, and the crusader states.

Preliminary work comparing Norman elites in southern Italy and Normandy suggests that an important factor in the construction of new Norman polities was the capacity of settlers in the diaspora to maintain connections between themselves and with the ‘homeland’ of Normandy. This project has and will continue to produce a systematic study of the relationships between different parts of the Norman diaspora.

In each area of new settlement, Normans faced also established local elites with whom power had to be either contested or shared. Moreover, the ethnic and religious composition of the native peoples differed across and within these regions, and included Muslims, Arabic-speaking Christians, Greeks, and English- and Celtic-speaking inhabitants. The challenges posed by this diversity to Norman political and ethnic identity will provide a crucial dimension to the research.

[Lien/Link : http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/normanedge/ ]

Birsay-Skaill Landscape Archaeology Project, Orkney, Scotland, UK

Responsables du projet/Project leaders : David Griffiths (david.griffiths@conted.ox.ac.uk), Ms Jane Harrison (jane.harrison@conted.ox.ac.uk)

Établissements principaux/Main institutions : University of Oxford

Projet en cours/Project in progress

Description :

Established to explore the Medieval landscapes around Birsay and the Bay of Skaill in Orkney, this project conducts survey and excavation targeting settlement history. Excavations have focused on Norse-period settlements in the Mound of Snusgar area (site of a famous Norse-period hoard), a few minutes walk from the Skara Brae Neolithic site. Although the aim is to explore the Medieval landscape, the project has a wider landscape reconstruction remit which covers earlier periods as well. There are both training and research opportunities. There is normally a fee for student participation to cover costs and training. Fieldwork normally happens in August each year, and there are many opportunities to explore the famous sites on Orkney mainland.

[Lien/Link : https://www.conted.ox.ac.uk/research/projects/birsay-skaill/index.php]

Knight Dayanna, Identity construction and maintenance in the North Atlantic c. AD800-1250

Knight Dayanna, Identity construction and maintenance in the North Atlantic c. AD800-1250,  Thèse de doctorat soutenue en 2014, (dir. C.P. Loveluck, A.G. Poulter, Université de Nottingham)

Résumé/abstract :

This study is a multivalent investigation of Scandinavian identity formation and cultural structures within the north Atlantic that looks specifically at the construction and maintenance of island identities circa AD800-1250. This not only includes consideration of the Norse settlers but also the effects of contact between the emerging island cultural identities and continental Europe. In order to do this zones of settlement have been defined to better compare the expansion of medieval Scandinavian populations in terms of microscale practices and interactions within family groups and the macroscale vectors of social, economic and political change. It employs a wide variety of material that makes use of aspects of both prehistoric and historic sources. The variety of enabling conditions ultimately provided for a time the circumstances necessary for the long-term success of a number of the settlements established during this period. The evidence is considered in as subjective manner as possible with the sources available also reflecting the conditions of initial region excavation and publication.

[Source : http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/14078/]

monumentsnetwork.org/

Runes, Monuments and Memorial Carvings

An International Research Network

http://monumentsnetwork.org/

The RMMC Network brings together researchers, including postgraduate students, in the fields of, for instance, History, Viking Studies, Medieval Studies, Runology, Art History, History of Religion, Archaeology, and Historical Linguistics with the intention to build up and strengthen an interdisciplinary research environment for researchers working with different aspects of carved stone monuments from the Viking Age and the early Middle Ages in Scandinavia, the British Isles, Ireland and Northern Europe.

Continuer la lecture de monumentsnetwork.org/

History Books in the Anglo-Norman World c.1100-c.1300

History Books in the Anglo-Norman World c.1100-c.1300

Responsable du projet/Project leader :

Laura Cleaver (cleaverl@tcd.ie)

Établissement principal/Main institution :

Trinity College Dublin

Projet en cours/Project in progress

Description :

In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries history (interpreted as both the recent past and a period stretching back to include the biblical narrative) seems to have become a major interest for both the educated elite and a growing audience who accessed ideas through vernacular texts. New chronicles and annals were produced, together with accounts of the histories of particular peoples, nations and subjects. At the same time, history was explored through images in books and other media. Much historical writing in this period dealt with issues of conquest and identity, which were often allied to geography, ethnicity or particular institutions. The ‘History Books’ project, funded by the Marie Curie Programme (FP7), will examine surviving medieval manuscripts in order to investigate the writing of history in areas controlled by the Anglo-Norman Empire, concentrating on the period 1100-1300. In particular the project will explore the use of images in the presentation of history in books and beyond.

[Lien/Link : https://www.tcd.ie/History_of_Art/research/history-books.php]

Majoros Christie, The function of hospitaller houses in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales

Majoros Christie, The function of hospitaller houses in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, (dir. H. Nicholson, P. Edbury, University of Cardiff)

En cours depuis 2013/In preparation since 2013

Résumé/abstract :

The specific goal of this project is to determine what kind of function the houses of the Hospitallers in the British Isles performed, or were intended to perform. Since it is clear that not all Hospitaller houses were built or acquiredfor a hospitable or charitable purpose, they must have been maintained by the Order for other reasons. I plan to investigate individual houses in an effort to determine what these other reasons were. Specifically, I will be looking for evidence of usefulness in one of four ways: martial, charitable, religious, or economic. The degree to which these houses were actually successful in fulfilling the function expected of them would be of secondary importance, entering into the discussion only where relevant to the determination of function. The project’s purpose is instead to create a comprehensive study that can be used as a tool for further research, allowing larger arguments to be made regarding both the activities and administrative practices of the Hospitaller Order in the British Isles, and how these practices figured into regional and international needs both within and outside of the Order.

[Source : http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/share/contactsandpeople/postgraduatestudents/christiemajoros-overview_new.html]

Cooke Siobhan, Characterising human-animal relations in Viking Age Scotland

Cooke Siobhan, Characterising human-animal relations in Viking Age Scotland: a reassessment of the archaeological record, (dir. J. Downes, M. Macleod, University of the Highlands and Islands)

En cours depuis 2012/In preparation since 2012

Résumé/abstract :

This study aims to characterise the nature of human-animal relations in Scotland during the Viking Age, particularly the use of animals in the creation, manipulation and confirmation of human identity. My research also aims to identify regional difference and to determine the factors affecting the construction of human-animal relations at local level.

[Source : http://www.uhi.ac.uk/en/archaeology-institute/our-research/research-students/siobhan-cooke]

Bankier Anne, Norse settlements and contacts in north Argyll

Bankier Anne, Norse settlements and contacts in north Argyll, (dir. C. Batey, University of Glasgow)

En cours depuis 2007/In preparation since 2007

Aucun résumé retrouvé/No abstract available

[Source : http://www.history.ac.uk/history-online/theses/thesis/in-progress/norse-settlements-and-contacts-north-argyll]

Acta of the Plantagenets

Acta of the Plantagenets

Responsable du projet/Project leader :

Nicholas Vincent (n.vincent@uea.ac.uk)

Établissement principal/Main institution :

University of Cambridge

Projet en cours/Project in progress

Description :

The texts of original charters, writs, letters, and other documents, as well as copies and transcripts of them made between the twelfth century and the present, are being prepared for editions intended for publication, beginning with the acts of Henry II. In addition to those of Henry, the project has also collected the acts of Eleanor of Aquitaine, of Richard I, of John as Lord of Ireland and Count of Mortain, and of other members of the Plantagenet family.

[Lien/Link : http://www.britac.ac.uk/arp/acta.cfm]

Dockrill Stephen James, Settlement and landscape in the Northern Isles : a multidisciplinary approach

Dockrill Stephen James,  Settlement and landscape in the Northern Isles : a multidisciplinary approach, archaeological research into long term settlements and their associated arable fields from the Neolithic to the Norse periods, Thèse de doctorat soutenue en 2013, (dir. C. P. Heron, L. D. Brown, Université de Bradford)

Résumé/abstract :
The research contained in these papers embodies both results from direct archaeological investigation and also the development of techniques (geophysical, chronological and geoarchaeological) in order to understand long-term settlements and their associated landscapes in Orkney and Shetland. Central to this research has been the study of soil management strategies of arable plots surrounding settlements from the Neolithic to the Iron Age. It is argued that this arable system provides higher yields in marginal locations. The ability to enhance yield in good years and to store surplus can mitigate against shortage. Control and storage of this surplus is seen as one catalyst for the economic power of elite groups over their underlying or ‘client’ population. The emergence of a social elite in the Iron Age, building brochs and other substantial roundhouses of near broch proportions, is seen as being linked to the control of resources. Evidence at the site of Old Scatness indicated that there was a continuity of wealth and power from the Middle Iron Age through the Pictish period, before the appearance of the Vikings produced a break in the archaeological record. The Viking period saw a break in building traditions, the introduction of new artefacts and changes in farming and fishing strategies. Each of the papers represents a contribution that builds on these themes.

The Charters of William II and Henry I

The Charters of William II and Henry I

Responsable du projet/Project leader :

Richard Sharpe (richard.sharpe@history.ox.ac.uk)

Établissement principal/Main institution :

University of Oxford

Projet en cours/Project in progress

Description :

The overall aim is to collect, edit, and interpret the royal acts issued in the names of two English kings, William II (reigned 1087 to 1100), and his brother Henry I (reigned 1100 to 1135), who was also duke of Normandy from 1106 until 1135. Royal acts, mainly charters but also writs and other letters, are the prime documentary source for the period, providing the means to understand the workings of the realm in a way not possible from chronicles and other narrative sources.

This edition differs from previous work on documents of this period by treating beneficiary archives as a unit. Although the king issued documents for his own reasons in many circumstances, for example royal proclamations, treaties, royal letters, and writs concerning fiscal administration, these rarely survive. What remains, therefore, is very largely the material in whose preservation someone had a direct interest. Most documents, even those representing the exercise of the king’s power such as the appointment of bishops or abbots, survive through the archive of the beneficiary who received and retained the documents. Different beneficiary archives tell different stories. The organization of the edition presents, for the most part, beneficiary archives with a headnote to explain the background, including the motivations behind seeking the king’s seal and the reasons for preservation.

When complete, the edition will include several hundred beneficiary archives. The acts are not distributed evenly between them: almost half are contained in just thirty archives. The files currently available on this site represent about an eighth of the material to be included in the final edition, which will be published as a multi-volume book.

[Lien/Link : https://actswilliam2henry1.wordpress.com/]

Hjaltland Network – Mapping Viking Age Shetland

Responsable du projet/Project leader : Andrew Jennings (andrew.jennings@nafc.uhi.ac.uk)

Établissement principal/Main institution : University of the Highlands and Islands

Projet en cours/Project in progress
Description :
The Hjaltland Research Network has received £17,000 from the Royal Society of Edinburgh to bring together national and international scholars of folklore onomastics, genetics, isotope research, archaeology and history to plan a large-scale research project entitled Mapping Viking Age Shetland, which will start in 2013. There will be a series of organizational meetings over the next two years in Shetland, Edinburgh and Copenhagen.

Mapping Viking Age Shetland will seek, through the digitising and mapping of the datasets of each discipline, to answer many of the unresolved questions about Shetland’s Viking Age, such as:

– what happened to the pre-Viking population,

– the date of Viking settlement,

– the origins of the Norse settlers and the anomaly of the divergent origins of the male and female lines,

– the nature of Shetland’s connections to the Celtic world,

– the intensity of settlement and the extent and duration of Norse pagan beliefs and folk traditions.

Mapping Viking Age Shetland will be a truly interdisciplinary approach to Viking-Age research, applying the latest technological advances and innovative new research in the various scientific and technological fields, which will allow for the teasing out of additional information from existing sources and the uncovering of new evidence, onomastic, genetic and isotopic.

Mapping Viking Age Shetland itself will be the pilot for a larger scale project, calledMSGI: Migration, Settlement and Genetic Inheritance: Mapping the Legacy of the Viking Age.

Hunter Linsey, Charter diplomatics and norms of landholding and lordship between the Humber and Forth, c.1066-c.1250

Hunter Linsey, Charter diplomatics and norms of landholding and lordship between the Humber and Forth, c.1066-c.1250, Thèse de doctorat soutenue en 2012, (dir. J. Hudson, University of St Andrews)

This thesis closely analyses the linguistic forms of aspects of non-royal charters produced c.1066-c.1250 in the north-east of England and the south-east of Scotland, namely, consent, joint grants, separate confirmations, inheritance language, leaseholds and warranty. This study identifies the preferred forms of each studied aspect as well as variants, developments and alternatives and analyses them according to a clear chronological framework and other potential causal factors such as the status and gender of participants, location and grant type. Additionally, the spread of linguistic patterns throughout the studied region, Stringer’s “diplomatic transplant”, is examined. Firstly, the charter underwent tremendous development across this period of study becoming trusted evidence of landholding transactions routine at most levels of society and subjected to sophisticated scrutiny by legal professionals in landholding disputes. Secondly, charter language was introduced, modified or abandoned according to many influences, e.g. the emergence of early Common Law systems in both Scotland and England, the rise of the legal profession and the growth in written culture evidenced partly through the spread of monastic houses and increasing trust in the written word. Indeed, the introduction of significant legal reforms – in England from the 1160s and in Scotland during the second quarter of the thirteenth century – are repeatedly revealed to be the point at which linguistic patterns became noticeably more settled and variants became much rarer. Notably, the fact that the language patterns of the Northumberland houses better mirror the patterns seen in south-east Scotland demonstrates the contrast in the level of bureaucratic organisation against the neighbouring shires of Durham and Yorkshire. Thirdly, this thesis highlights the existence of preferred linguistic forms by individual religious houses, religious orders, families or groups of people within localities or larger geographical regions. In particular, religious houses were especially influential in the widespread adoption of some forms of language. Overall, developments and changes to charter language were streamlined, revised or modified with the dual aims of providing greater clarity and thus maximum legal protection; before legal reform the latter was much more dependent upon familial and seignorial ties, a factor reflected in the greater variety of linguistic forms.

[Source : http://hdl.handle.net/10023/3096]

Buchanan Courtney, Viking artefacts from southern Scotland and northern England

Buchanan Courtney, Viking artefacts from southern Scotland and northern England: cultural contacts, interactions, and identities in peripheral areas of Viking settlement, (dir. C. Batey, University of Glasgow)

Résumé/abstract :

This thesis explores the portable, non-indigenous material culture strongly related, but not exclusive, to one specific ethnic group in the medieval period. It is based on the idea that people from different cultural backgrounds cannot come into contact with each other without their identities being altered in some significant way, and these altered identities will be expressed in their material culture. During the period c.800-1100, the Vikings initiated contact with the inhabitants of Britain, first by raiding and attacking, then by trading and settling amongst the local populations. Whereas most research of Viking and local interaction has focused on Viking settlements in the Northern and Western Isles or the Anglo-Scandinavian town of York, this thesis focuses on the peripheral areas of Viking political control: northern England and southern Scotland. It is in these regions where there are increasing amounts of evidence of Viking activities and interactions with the local peoples.

Three key research questions are asked of the materials found within the study area: 1) how and why did items of ‘Viking’ material culture enter regions outside of the centres of traditional Viking settlements? 2) How and why were these items used to conduct meaningful contacts and interactions with those people already inhabiting this land? 3) How and why were identities constructed in these regions where multiple cultural traditions came into contact with one another? A multifaceted approach is adopted to answer these questions. First, the historical sources are analysed for different contexts of contact and interaction between Vikings and non- Vikings in the study area. Second, a postcolonial approach to studying the interactions between groups was adopted in order to move away from simplistic assimilation or acculturation narratives where one group subsumes the other. Rather, this approach argues for the creation of a new social dimension in which people’s actions, routines, and identities are altered in order to negotiate and thrive within the new cultural landscape. It is argued that the hybridization seen in many of the artefacts, as well as other sources utilised throughout the thesis, is the material articulation of this new space. Finally, this thesis includes data recovered through the Portable Antiquities Scheme and Treasure Trove Scotland in addition to excavated finds. In the study region, 499 items are identified and catalogued as Viking or hybrid-Viking, many of which have no archaeological context as they are stray or metal-detected finds. Through the course of searching, three major concentrations were identified along major maritime inlets: the Solway Firth, the River Clyde, and the Forth and Tay Basins. These concentrations were turned into three case-study areas based upon concentrations of finds as well as the contextual aids of historical sources, place-names, and stone sculpture. The first case study examines the Solway Firth and determines that the Vikings were a very important part of the population, and a hybridized society is seen there. The second case study of Strathclyde also determines that the Vikings were active there; the evidence indicates smaller, more concentrated communities of Vikings that integrated into the British population of the region. The final case study of the Forth and Tay basins establishes the Vikings as important actors there, although not only in the traditional view of their attacks opening up the Pictish throne for Cinaed mac Alpin. The Vikings settled in this region and aided the formation of the new kingdom of Alba. Overall, it is shown that Vikings were much more active on the peripheries of their political establishments than has previously been realised. It is also demonstrated that people in contact with others from different cultural backgrounds will alter their routines, practices, materials, and identities in order to negotiate the new social sphere that is created by such interaction. The key to understanding this negotiation is recognising the multiple contexts in which people interact and that each situation will result in different hybridized routines, materials, and identities that are unique to that specific context.

[Source : http://theses.gla.ac.uk/3391/]

Kupiec Patrycja, Transhumance and Norse colonization in the North Atlantic

Kupiec Patrycja, Transhumance and Norse colonization in the North Atlantic: a micromorphological approach, (dir. K. Milek, University of Aberdeen)

En cours depuis 2014/In preparation since 2014

Résumé/abstract :

The seasonal movement of grazing livestock to upland pastures (shielings) is believed to have played an important role in the subsistence economics of small farms in Scandinavia and the North Atlantic region during the Viking Age, Medieval and post-Medieval periods. Although, historical sources, saga literature, place-name evidence and oral tradition strongly suggest that transhumance was practised shortly after the Norse began to settle in the North Atlantic region in the ninth century, the archaeological evidence to support this is scarce. In the past, shielings have proven difficult to identify archaeologically on account of shared spatial characteristics with small farms. My doctoral research examines the potential of geoarchaeological approaches to identify transhumance activities in two contrasting regions of Viking colonization: Iceland and Scotland. By comparing data from Scottish and Icelandic shielings this project explores the process of land-taking in the Viking Age, the degree to which Norse settlers were influenced by pre-Norse settlement patterns and land-use practices, and the creation and perception of landscapes in these new colonies. A detailed study of occupation sequences excavated on shieling sites will improve our knowledge of subsistence practices and everyday life of Viking and Pictish farmers. By placing shielings with other features of Viking and Medieval landscape in the North Atlantic region a fuller picture of the Norse society will emerge, in which all aspects of the land use are considered together as a part of an integrated whole. The results of landscape studies and high-resolution sedimentary histories of shielings selected as case-studies will be contextualised against a review of medieval saga literature, medieval laws, and later folk stories and ethnographic accounts to elucidate not only the economic role of shielings, but also their cultural and social significance. Through combining archaeology, historical and literary sources this project aims to enrich our grasp of the concepts of identity mediated through shielings, as well as yearly cycles and agricultural cosmologies of Norse societies.

[Source : http://www.abdn.ac.uk/geosciences/departments/archaeology/profiles/p.m.kupiec]