Meetings 2005

Seminar: Monday 5 December 2005, 7-9pm (doors open at 6pm). Location: Parish Hall of Foothills Congregational Church, Los Altos (directions)

  • Jacqueline E. Jung, Assistant Professor in Medieval Art at UC Berkeley will speak on Liturgical Furnishings and Pictorial Embellishments in Late Gothic Churches of Germany and Austria. Most of you have heard about her great Sarum Seminar on choir screens. This is your chance to hear her again.

Seminar: Thursday 17 November 2005, 7-9 PM. Location: Special Collections room, Green Library, Stanford University

  • John Mustain hosted our now-annual Medieval Treasures and Other Delights - a visit to some wondrous samples from the Stanford Special Collections (see below to see what we saw). Temporarily, this web site also provides images.

Seminar: Monday 17 October 2005, 7-9 PM. Location: Parish Hall of Foothills Congregational Church, Los Altos (directions)

  • Dick Jones will present The Great Scaffold Debate. Dick is the author of the chapter Ironwork at the Top: A Medieval Jigsaw Puzzle in Salisbury Cathedral's Spire in the recently published book, DeRe Metallica: The Uses of Metal in the Middle Ages. He is a recognized authority on technology as applied to medieval construction. The great spire at Salisbury Cathedral, the tallest stone spire in England, encloses an oaken scaffold that was used to construct it -- or at least this was the notion until the 1990's, when a proposal emerged that the scaffold used in construction was exterior to the spire, and that the extant scaffold was inserted subsequently to facilitate maintenance. Recent tree-ring dates are claimed to support the exterior scaffold hypothesis. This lecture demonstrates that the tree-ring dating does no such thing, and that the external scaffold hypothesis is itself fallacious. For those of you who want to know more about medieval construction, this is the lecture for you.
  • Elaine and Randy Kriegh will treat us to Andalusian Delights. Elaine and Randy's trip was featured in our recent newsletter. Their lecture will concentrate on Moorish Spain. Anyone who has traveled with them, has benefited from their advanced, detailed research on the places visited and on Elaine's extensive knowledge of castles. Their itinerary included most of the well-known Moorish sites -- the Alhambra in Granada, the Sevilla Alcazar, and the Mezquita in Cordoba -- along with some lesser known spots. They have promised lots of pictures.

Seminar: Monday September 26, 2005, 7-9 PM. Location: Parish Hall of Foothills Congregational Church, Los Altos (directions)

  • Bob Scott: Reflections on the Medieval Cult of Saints. Bob is Associate Director Emeritus of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, located on the Stanford campus. While working on his recent book, The Gothic Enterprise, he became fascinated to learn a bit about the miracle cures associated with saint's' relics. Last winter, Bob spent two months as Visiting Fellow at New College, Oxford, giving him even more time for research and reflection.

Seminar: Thursday, May l9, 2005, 7-9 PM. Location: Foothills Congregational Church, Los Altos (directions)

  • Ann Jones: Beardless youth and grizzled geezers: usage of beards on thirteenth century gothic sculpture.
  • In gothic sculpture, youth and age is indicated by absence or presence of beards. This is one of many rules on the usage of beards which everyone "knows." Does reality match this perception? Are there indeed rules with no known exceptions? Are there regional variations? Does sculpture follow fashion in facial hair? Does usage of beards depend on type of sculpture or its location? Major thirteenth century sculpture programs across Western Christendom are surveyed to establish the actual usage of beards. Analysis of several thousand individual sculptured heads and figures demonstrates what exists, and adds to what we "know."
  • Ann adds: I have also scheduled two additional lectures as part of Foothills Congregational Sunday Forums. Everyone is welcome to attend these, too. These sessions will be aimed at intelligent people who do not necessarily know anything about gothic sculpture. The first session is after the 10:30 service on Sunday, May 8, at about 11:45am titled Gothic Sculpture in Sacred Space. This will discuss uses of gothic sculpture within the architecture of medieval cathedrals and churches and some of the surprising places masons put sculpture. The second in the series is on May 15, also at 11:45am, titled Religious Themes in Gothic Sculpture. Gothic sculpture is more than art, it is a reflection of how religious knowledge was organized in medieval times.

Seminar: Monday, April 18, 2005, 7-9 PM (room opens at 6pm for brown-bag suppers). Location: Foothills Congregational Church, Los Altos (directions)

  • Arlene Okerlund (Professor of English at San Jose State): Elizabeth Wydeville: A Queen Slandered by History.
  • "There have been thousands of academic and popular studies on Richard III and the princes in the tower. Several have criticized Elizabeth, the mother of the princes. Come hear some insight on this fascinating, much maligned queen."

Seminar: week of Monday, March 14, 2005, 7-9 PM. Location: Foothills Congregational Church, Los Altos (directions)

  • Carolyn Malone (Associate Prof. of Art History at Univ. of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles): Façade as spectacle: ritual and ideology at Wells Cathedral
  • "The 'spectacle' that is the western façade of Wells Cathedral broke with tradition when it was conceived of and built in the 1220s. Whereas previous façades had been rather plain, Wells was bedecked with architectural motifs and sculpture of the Coronation of the Virgin, with an array of saints, a real reflection of 'liturgical pomp and display'. This book examines both the spectacle and its meaning within the context of the 1220s. Carolyn Marino Malone discusses what we know of its patron, Bishop Jocelin, and his ideas for the façade, as well as its designer who had to transform these into reality, taking into account architectural and more practical decisions. Placed within the theological, liturgical and political context of the Church in England in the 1220s, this study reveals how Wells signified a change of approach in how the Church engaged with its audience through architectural symbolism and discusses what motivated this ideologically-motivated statement." [from the David Brown web site]

Seminar: Monday, February 14, 2005, 7-9 PM. Location: Stanford Center for Behavioral Sciences

  • William M. Reddy (William T. Laprade Professor of History and Professor of Cultural Anthropology at Duke University, and Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences): The Triumph of Love: The History of Western Romantic Love in Comparative Perspective.
  • There is a Sanskrit term, srngara rasa, that is impossible to translate into English. It has been translated as “love,” as “passion,” and as “erotic mood.” It could be said to mean “the nectar of love-arousal,” or “the extract or essence of passionate love-desire.” (Some) temple women, in pre-colonial times, had the function of performing dances in (some) temples that inspired srngara rasa in (certain) spectators. (Some) British administrators and missionaries were deeply troubled by these “temple prostitutes”; gradually their dance rituals were suppressed and have (all but) disappeared. In contrast to the Sanskrit-Hindu bundle of traditions, the Western Christian (and, to a large extent also Jewish) bundle of traditions has no way of conceptualizing an uplifting or spiritualized lust. Sexual desire is a bodily appetite, and falls on the material side of the divide between spiritual (mental, abstract) and material. The uplifting form of sexual relationship is one based on “romantic love,” an “emotion” that includes desire, and, by strictly governing desire, purifies it and renders it guilt-free. Developed in the twelfth century, propagated surreptitiously to avoid clerical condemnation, treated by many as “natural” since the Enlightenment, romantic love became, for most educated locals in most Western industrialized countries, in the twentieth century, the sole legitimate grounds for marriage. Many priest, rabbis, and ministers (once the sworn enemies of romantic love) now recommend it to their faithful. The full significance of this “triumph” of love in the present is difficult to fathom.

Seminar and potluck: Saturday, January 22, 2005, 3-9 PM. Location: Home of Ann and Dick Jones

  • William Mahrt: Music Program from 3-5. William will lead a seminar/rehearsal for singers followed by a mini-performance at 5:15. Potluck from 6-9.

Details of individual meetings

John Mustain: Rare books at Stanford Library

17 November 2005. My thanks to John Mustain for putting together this list of the documents we saw. -- john wilkes

1. Bailey, N. (Nathan), d. 1742. An universal etymological English dictionary comprehending the derivations of the generality of words in the English tongue .... The 8th ed. with considerable improvements. London, Printed for D. Midwinter, etc., 1737.

  • John Hancock’s copy

2. Kaempfer, Engelbert, 1651-1716. The history of Japan ... Written in High-Dutch ... and translated ... by J. G. Scheuchzer... London, Printed for the translator, 1727.

3. Catholic Church. Horae. [Tournai, 1486 or 1497].

  • Included are the following parts: Calendar, Hours of the Cross, Hours of the Holy Ghost, Hours of the Virgin, Office of the Dead, Penitential Psalms, Lessons from the Four Gospels, Litany of the Saints, and Diverse prayers. There are five miniatures and twenty large initials done in the Franco-Flemish style which followed the school of the brothers Van Eyck; the illumination also shows the influence of the School of Fouquet. Mary was the most popular expression of faith and devotion in the Middle Ages and her prayer book, the Book of Hours, was a favorite of lay persons throughout Europe. Many copies were executed by the finest artists of the period and were viewed among the rich as status symbols. In Latin and French, Gothic minuscule script.

4. Dugdale, William, Sir, 1605-1686. Monasticon anglicanum: a history of the abbies and other monasteries, hospitals, frieries, and cathedral and collegiate churches, with their dependencies, in England and Wales; also of all such Scotch, Irish, and French monasteries, as were in any manner connected with religious houses in England .... London, J. Bohn, 1846.

5. Charles I, King of England, 1600-1649. Basilike. The workes of King Charles the martyr: with a collection of declarations, treaties, and other papers concerning the differences betwixt His said Majesty and his two houses of Parliament. London, Printed by J. Flesher for R. Royston, 1662.

6. Milton, John, 1608-1674. Paradise lost. A poem in twelve books .... The 4th ed., adorn'd with sculptures. London, Printed by Miles Flesher, for Jacob Tonson, 1688.

  • The first folio edition and the first illustrated edition.

7. Hooke, Robert, 1635-1703. Micrographia, or, Some physiological descriptions of minute bodies made by magnifying glasses : With observations and inquiries thereupon. London, Printed by Jo. Martyn and Ja. Allestry ... [for] the Royal Society ..., MDCLXV [1665].

8. James I, King of England, 1566-1625. The workes of the most high and mightie prince, Iames, by the grace of God, king of Great Britain, France and Ireland, defender of the faith, &c. Pvblished by Iames, bishop of Winton, and deane of His Maiesties chappel royall .... London, Printed by Robert Barker and Iohn Bill, printers to the Kings Most Excellent Maieste. Anno 1616

9. Locke, John, 1632-1704. An essay concerning humane understanding. In four books. London, Printed [by Elizabeth Holt] for T. Basset, and sold by E. Mory, 1690.

10. Sandford, Francis, 1630-1694. The history of the coronation of the most high, most mighty, and most excellent monarch, James II : by the grace of God, king of England, Scotland, France and Ireland, defender of the faith, &c., and of his royal consort Queen Mary .... A Amsterdam : Chez P. & J. Blaeu, Janssons à Waesberge, Boom, & Goethals, 1702.

11. Newton, Isaac, Sir, 1642-1727. [Principia] Philosophiæ naturalis principia mathematica. Autore Is. Newton .... Londini, Jussu Societatis Regiæ ac Typus Josephi Streater. Prostat apud plures Bibliopolas. Anno 1687.

12. Wither, George, 1588-1667. A Collection Of Emblemes, Ancient And Moderne: Quickened VVith Metricall Illvstrations, both Morall and Divine: And disposed into Lotteries, That Jnstruction, and Good Counsell, may bee furthered by an Honest and Pleasant Recreation. London, Printed by A. M. for Robert Allot, and are to be sold at the Blacke Beare in Pauls Church-yard. 1635.

13. Du Choul, Guillaume, 16th cent. Discorso della religione antica de Romani : insieme vn'altro Discorso della castrametatione, & disciplina militare, bagni, & essercitij antichi di detti Romani. In Lione, Appresso Guglielmo Rouillio, M.D.LXIX [1569]

  • Translation of Du Choul's Discours de la religion des anciens Romains, first published Lyon, G. Rouillé, 1556. His Discours sur la castrametation et discipline militaire des Romains first published Lyon, G. Rouillé, 1555.

14. Cartari, Vincenzo, b. ca. 1500. Le imagini degli dei degli antichi, del Signor Vincenzo Cartari regiano, novamente ristampate & ricorette. Nelle quali sono descritte la religione degli antichi, li idoli, riti & ceremonie loro .... In Padoa, appresso Pietro Paulo Tozzi, 1608.

15. Encyclopédie, ou, Dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers, par une societé de gens de lettres. Mis en ordre & publié par m. Diderot ... & quant à la partie mathematique, par m. d'Alembert ... Paris, Briasson [etc.], 1751-65.

16. __________________

  • A Volume from the plates series that accompanies the above.

17. Pomey, François, 1618-1673. [Pantheum mythicum. English] The Pantheon : representing the fabulous histories of the heathen gods and most illustrious heroes, in a short, plain, and familiar method, by way of dialogue / written by Fra. Pomey, of the Society of Jesus ... for the use of the Dauphin .... The third edition, wherein the whole translation is revised, and much amended, and the work is illustrated and adorned with elegant copper-cuts of the several deities, &c. London, Printed for Charles Harper ..., 1701.

18. Ovid, 43 B.C.-17 or 18 A.D. Ovid's Metamorphosis Englished, mythologiz'd, and represented in figures. An essay to the translation of Virgil's Aeneis. By G.S. Imprinted at Oxford, By Iohn Lichfield, 1632.

  • With an additional title page, engraved. This and some of the plates are signed by Franz Cleyn, artist, and Salomon Savery, engraver.

19. Cervantes Saavedra, Miguel de, 1547-1616. The history of the valorous and wittie knight-errant Don-Quixote of the Mancha; translated out of the Spanish by Thomas Shelton, MDCXII[-MDCXX] Chelsea, The Ashendene Press, 1927-1928.

  • One of twenty copies printed on vellum.

20. Racine, Jean, 1639-1699. Theatre de Jean Racine. Orne de cinquante-sept estampes d'apres les dessins de M.M. Prud'hon, Gerard, Girodet, Chaudet, Serangeli et Peyron, peintres et statuaires. A Paris, De l'imprimerie de P.Didot l'aine, 1813

21. Ovid, 43 B.C.-17 or 18 A.D. [Metamorphoses. French & Latin] Les metamorphoses d'Ovide en latin et François ... / de la traduction de Mr. Pierre Du-Ryer Parisien ... Edition nouvelle, enrichie de tres-belles figures. A Amsterdam : Chez P. & J. Blaeu, Janssons à Waesberge, Boom, & Goethals, 1702.

22. Ayres, Philip, 1638-1712. Emblemata amatoria = Emblems of love = Embleme d'amore = Emblemes d'amour : in four languages : dedicated to the ladys. London, Sold by R. Bently ... S. Tidmarch ... &c., 1683.

23. Sammes, Aylett, 1636?-1679? Britannia antiqua illustrata, or, The antiquities of ancient Britain, derived from the Phoenicians : wherein the original trade of this island is discovered, the names of places, offices, dignities, as likewise the idolatry, language, and customs of the primitive inhabitants are clearly demonstrated from that nation, many old monuments illustrated, and the commerce with that people, as well as the Greeks, plainly set forth and collected out of approved Greek and Latin authors : together with a chronological history of this kingdom, from the first traditional beginning, until the year of Our Lord 800, when the name of Britain was changed into England .... London, Printed by Tho. Roycroft, for the author, 1676.

24. Apuleius. Lamovr de cvpido et de Psiché mere de volvpté, prise des cinq & sixiesme liures de la Metamorphose de Lucius Apuleius philosophe. nouuellement historiée & exposée en vers francois ... Leonar. Galter. fec. & excu. [Paris?, 1590?].

  • Versified by Jean Maugin and illustrated by Léonard Gaultier. Reprint of the 1586 edition, with the date on t.-p. and last plate omitted.

25. Ovid, 43 B.C.-17 or 18 A.D. [Metamorphoses. German & Latin] P. Ovid Nasonis XV Metamorphoseon ... a Cr[i] spiano Passæo laminis æneis incisæ ... . Cologne, Apud Crisp Passæum chalcographum, [1607?].

26. Purcell, Henry. Te Deum & Jubilate for Voices and Instruments Made for St. Cecilia’s Day.

  • Manuscript, signed, 1694.

27. Purcell, Henry. Te Deum & Jubilate ...

  • 1st printed edition, 1697.

28. Day, T. A. Illustrations of mediaeval costume in England : collected from mss. in the British Museum, Bibliotheque Nationale de Paris, etc. London, T. Bosworth, [1851].

29. Hakewill, James, 1778-1843. An attempt to determine the exact character of Elizabethan architecture, illustrated by parallels of Dorton house, Hatfield, Longleate, and Wollaton, in England; and the Palazzo della Cancellaria, at Rome. By James Hakewill ... London, J. Weale, 1835.