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Current officers of the centre

Director: Dr Rebecca Rist (Department History)

History Postgraduate Administrator: Anna Lawrence

Grenville Astill Professor in Archaeology
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Adrian Bell Head of ICMA Centre; Chair in the History of Finance
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Ken Dark Associate Professor in Archaeology and History
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Professor Paul Davies Professor of History of Art
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Roberta Gilchrist Research Dean / Professor in Archaeology
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Lindy Grant Professor of Medieval History">
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Anne Lawrence Professor in Medieval History
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Catherine Léglu Professor of French Studies
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Françoise Le Saux Professor of French Studies
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Elizabeth Matthew Honorary Research Fellow in Medieval History and Part-Time Lecturer
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Paola Nasti Associate Professor - Italian Studies
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Aleks Pluskowski Associate Professor in Medieval Archaeology
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Rebecca Rist Professor In Medieval History
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Gabor Thomas Associate Professor in Early Medieval Archaeology
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Research Interests of the GCMS Staff

Grenville Astill - BA, PhD (Birmingham), FSA. Professor of Archaeology. British Academy Research Readership 1990-92. Recipient of two national awards for his archaeological fieldwork. Publications and research centre on urban and rural settlement, the medieval economy, technology and monastic archaeology. Co-editor and major contributor to The Countryside of Medieval England (1988) and Medieval Farming and Technology. The Impact of Agricultural Change in Northwest Europe (1997). Long-term research programmes include excavations and fieldwork on the precinct and estates of Bordesley Abbey, a medieval Cistercian monastery in Worcestershire: A Medieval Industrial Complex and its Landscape: the Metalworking, Watermills and Workshops of Bordesley Abbey was published in 1993 and followed by a series of further publications. He co-directed a multidisciplinary landscape survey in Eastern Brittany, now published as The East Brittany Survey: Fieldwork and Data (1994) and The Breton Landscape (1997).

Aisling Byrne - BA(UCD), PhD (Cambridge). Previously Fitzjames Research Fellow in Old and Middle English at Merton College, now Lecturer in the Department of English Literature. Has published on the transmission and translation of medieval romance, on writers such as Gerald of Wales and Thomas Malory, and on themes such as marvels, feasting, chivalry, and territorial politics. Interests include multilingualism, medieval geographies, and the history of the book. Aisling's monograph, Otherworlds: Fantasy and History in Medieval Literature, was published in 2015 by Oxford University Press. She is co-convenor of the Crossing Borders in the Insular Middle Ages project. Aisling currently teaches on Old English Literature, Chaucer and Medieval Narrative, Medieval Romance and Medieval Otherworld descriptions.

Adrian Bell―BA (Hull), MA (Reading), PhD (Reading) Professor of the History of Finance, Head of the ICMA Centre, and Associate Dean (International), Henley Business School, University of Reading. Adrian is interested in the history of finance and is working on a major project funded by the Leverhulme Trust with Professor Chris Brooks and Dr Helen Killick. The project "The first real estate bubble: Land Prices and Rents in Medieval England c. 1200-1550" will run for 3 years from 2015. The project builds upon a previous project for Leverhume with Professor Chris Brooks and Dr Tony Moore on medieval foreign exchange. More detail is available at A previous major project for the ESRC with the same team investigated the early and innovative use of credit finance by a succession of English medieval monarchs ( and an earlier ESRC project entitled "Modern Finance in the Middle Ages? Advance contracts for the supply of wool" (UK Data Archive, study number 5325: Professor Bell also specialises in the Hundred Years War and his book, War and the Soldier in the Fourteenth Century, was published by Boydell and Brewer in Autumn 2004. In 2006 he was awarded a major grant from the AHRC (jointly with Professor Anne Curry, University of Southampton) to investigate "The Soldier in Later Medieval England" for more details see The findings are outlined in a major work The Soldier in Later Medieval England, published by Oxford University Press (2013).

Ken Dark - BA [York], PhD [Cantab], FSA, FRHist.Soc., FRAI, SFHES. Associate Professor in Archaeology and History in the School of Politics, Economics and International Relations; chair of the Late Antiquity Research Group; holds honorary professorships from several European and North American universities. An archaeologist specializing on the first millennium AD in Europe (including Britain and Ireland) and the Mediterranean, he has directed archaeological projects since the late 1970s - most recently in Nazareth, at the Byzantine church of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, and in south-west England. Other than this fieldwork, his current research includes Roman and Byzantine urban centres, the earliest Christian communities in the Roman world, and fourth to seventh-century Britain.

Paul Davies -BA (Reading), MA, PhD (London). Lecturer in History of Art. Secretary of the Centre 1994-97. Author of many articles on Italian Renaissance architecture. Revised L.H. Heydenreich's Architecture in Italy 1400-1500, Yale University Press, 1996. Particular interests include the design of centrally planned churches in Italy during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries and the work of Michele Sanmicheli about whom he published a book in 2004. At present cataloguing the Renaissance architectural drawings in the Royal Library at Windsor Castle. Co-editor of a series of books for Cambridge University Press entitled 'Architecture in Early Modern Italy'.

Luke Elson - PhD (North Carolina) is a lecturer in the philosophy department. In contemporary philosophy, his research interests are mostly in ethics and metaethics. He is interested (albeit at a fairly amateurish level!) in late mediaeval/scholastic philosophy, and his research draws on this in comparing the late-mediaeval and contemporary views of our 'place' in the universe. In 2017-18 he is on research leave.

Roberta Gilchrist - BA, DPhil (York), FBA, FSA. Professor of Archaeology and Research Dean. Research interests in medieval and social archaeology, with particular focus on gender and belief. Has published widely on the archaeology of religious communities (nunneries, monasteries, hospitals), on medieval and early modern burial, and on the archaeology of medieval material culture and standing buildings. Author of Glastonbury Abbey: Archaeological Investigations 1904-79 (2015), Medieval Life: Archaeology and the Life Course (2012); Requiem: the Medieval Monastic Cemetery in Britain (2005); Norwich Cathedral: the Evolution of the English Cathedral Landscape (2005) and Gender and Material Culture: The Archaeology of Religious Women (1994). Currently completing a monograph on Sacred Heritage: Archaeology, Identity and Medieval Beliefs.

Lindy Grant - MA (St Andrews), MA, PhD (Lond.). Lindy Grant has been Professor of Medieval History at the University of Reading since 2006 and is a former Director of the Centre. Before that, she was a medieval curator in the Conway Library at the Courtauld Institute. She is the author of Abbot Suger of Saint-Denis. Church and State in Early Twelfth-Century France, (Longman's Medieval World Series), London, 1998; Architecture and Society in Normandy, c. 1120-c.1270, Yale University Press, London/New Haven, 2005; and Blanche of Castile, Queen of France, Yale University Press, London/New Haven, 2016, and of numerous articles on the political, ecclesiastical and cultural history of France in the High Middle Ages. Between 2010 and 2013, she was President of the British Archaeological Association, and is now a Lifetime Vice-President. She is a Trustee of the British Academy Angevin Acta project, and is currently Chair of the R.Allen Brown Trust for Anglo-Norman Studies (Battle Conference). Her research focuses on the intersection of politics, religion and culture, especially material culture, in Capetian France and the Anglo-Norman/Angevin sphere.

Anne Lawrence - MA (Cantab), MA, PhD (London). Senior Lecturer in History. Centre Director 2005-07 and 2013-17. MA director and Centre Director for Teaching and Learning. Member of the Organising Committee of the Research Group for Health Humanities. Interested in medieval cultural and intellectual history. Particular expertise and articles focus on aspects of English Romanesque manuscript illumination, book collection and monastic scholarship. Author of articles on the Alfredian manuscript tradition, and the Durham scriptorium, as well as a monograph on Manuscripts in Northumbria in the 11th and 12th centuries. Her research interests centre on medieval magic and science, and on the interfaces and interactions between the two. This is exemplified by her monograph on The True History of Merlin the Magician and by articles on the roles of astronomy, astrology and computus in monastic chronology. Following research undertaken whilst she held an AHRC Research Leaders Fellowship she is currently completing a monograph on Medieval Meteorology.

Catherine Léglu - MA (Cantab), PhD (Cantab). Professor of Medieval Occitan and French Literature. Director of the Centre. Editor of Reading Medieval Studies 2008-10. Leverhulme Trust Research Fellowship 2006-07. Author of Multilingualism and Mother Tongue in French, Occitan and Catalan Narratives of the later Middle Ages (Penn State UP, 2010), and of Between Sequence and Sirventes: Aspects of Parody in Troubadour Lyric, (Oxford, 2000). Co-editor with Marcus Bull of The World of Eleanor of Aquitaine: Literature and Society in Southern France between the eleventh to thirteenth centuries (Boydell, 2005), and with Stephen J. Milner The Erotics of Consolation: Desire and Distance in the Middle Ages (Palgrave, 2008). Also the editor of a little-known wartime play by Simone de Beauvoir set in the medieval period, Les Bouches Inutiles (Duckworth, 2001). Has published widely on troubadour poetry, especially on satire and invective, and on various aspects of didactic and narrative literature in French, Occitan, Catalan and hybrid vernaculars that were developed purely for literary texts, such as Franco-Italian and Catalan-Occitan. Currently completing a sourcebook (with Rebecca Rist, and Claire Taylor, University of Nottingham) on heresy, inquisition and the Albigensian Crusade (Pearson group). Also working on a Leverhulme Trust-funded project, 'Histories and Genealogies: British Library ms. Egerton 1500' (2010-13), the edition of an Occitan translation of An illustrated universal history by the Franciscan friar, diplomat and bishop of Pozzuoli, Paolino da Venezia (d.1344).

Françoise Le Saux - Licence ès Lettres (Lausanne), MA (Wales), Dr ès Lettres (Lausanne). Formerly of Lausanne (CH), Geneva (CH) and Freiburg-im-Breisgau (D). Professor of Medieval French. Director of the Centre, 2001-4. Editor of Reading Medieval Studies 1997-2008. President of the British Branch of the International Arthurian Society. Research interests focus on translation and cultural adaptation in the Middle Ages, with special emphasis on French, English and Celtic literatures. Publications include The Companion to Wace (Boydell, 2005), Layamon's Brut: The Poem and its Sources (1989), Amys and Amylion (1993) and a number of articles on a wide range of subjects. Editor of Myth and its Legacy in European Literature (1996), and with Peter Noble, Phillipa Hardman and Neil Thomas, The Growth of the Tristan and Iseut Legend in Wales, England, France and Germany (2003). Françoise has now retired from the Department of Modern Languages, but teaches Latin and Palaeography for the GCMS.

Elizabeth Matthew - BA, PhD (Durham). Honorary Research Fellow and Sessional Lecturer in History. President of the Reading branch of the Historical Association 2000-05.Research interests centre on government, politics, magnates, gentry and prelates in late-medieval England and Ireland.Co-editor (with Anne Curry) of Concepts and Patterns of Service in the Later Middle Ages (2000) and contributor to The Oxford Companion to Irish History (1998; 2002) and The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004).She is currently working on a book for Cambridge University Press on The Lancastrian Lordship of Ireland.

Tony Moore - MA, MPhil, PhD (Cantab), Lecturer in Finance at the ICMA Centre. Programme Director of the MSc in Financial Regulation and of the MA by Research in Economic History, series editor of Palgrave Studies in the History of Finance. Previously Research Associate on two historical finance projects, the first on the relationship between the 'Three Edwards' and their Italian bankers and the second on the medieval Foreign Exchange market. His chief research interest is the history of finance with particular focus on the use of credit in the Middle Ages. His PhD was on 'Government and Locality in Essex in the reign of Henry III' and he has continued to publish on thirteenth century administration, law and politics.

Paola Nasti - Senior Lecturer in Italian. Her interests comprise Dante, Biblical exegesis, mysticism, medieval critical writing and theory, and Italian Cinema. She has published on Dante and the medieval biblical traditions. At present, she is working on a monograph on the presence of Solomonic poetry and traditions in Dante's oeuvre.

David Oderberg - BA, LLB (Melbourne), DPhil (Oxford), Professor of Philosophy. Author of The Metaphysics of Identity over Time; Moral Theory; Applied Ethics; editor of Form and Matter: Themes in Contemporary Metaphysics; and co-editor of Human Lives: Critical Essays on Consequentialist Bioethics. He has published many articles in various philosophical journals. His chief interests are contemporary metaphysics, philosophical logic and moral philosophy, with special interests in Aristotle, Aquinas and all aspects of medieval philosophy.

Aleks Pluskowski - BA, PhD (Cantab), lecturer in archaeology. Author of Wolves and the Wilderness in the Middle Ages (Boydell, 2006). His interests include exploring ecological diversity across medieval Europe, focussed on zooarchaeology and the inter-disciplinary perspectives of human-animal relations. He is also currently involved in the international research project 'The Ecology of Crusading: the environmental impact of conquest and colonisation in the medieval Baltic, and the environmental impact of Venetian colonisation in the medieval Mediterranean.

Rebecca Rist - BA (Oxon), MPhil, PhD (Cantab). Associate Professor in Medieval History. Her research interests include the history of crusading, Jewish-Christian relations, the medieval Church, the papacy, religious belief and political ideas in the Central Middle Ages. Her book The Papacy and Crusading in Europe, 1198-1245 (Continuum, 2009) examines the papacy's authorisation of crusades against heretics and political enemies in Europe during the first half of the thirteenth century. Her book The Cathars and the Albigensian Crusade: A Sourcebook, ed. C. Leglu, R. Rist and C. Taylor (Routledge, 2014) brings together a rich and diverse range of medieval sources to examine key aspects of the growth of heresy and dissent in southern France in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Her book Popes and Jews, 1095-1291 (Oxford University Press, 2016) examines the papacy's relationship to Jewish communities in western Europe in the High Middle Ages. Recent articles have explored aspects of papal policy with regard to crusading and the papacy's treatment of heretics and Jews in the High Middle Ages. She is currently working with two other scholars on two books for Routledge on the theme of Catholic piety and devotional lay sensibilities and also on a sole-authored monograph on the papacy and medieval heresy.

Ruth Salter– BA, MA(Res), PhD (Reading). Associate/Early Career Research Fellow at the GCMS. Researches twelfth-century posthumous miracles from a socio-medical perspective in order to reveal the experiences of cure-seekers who sought miraculous healing. Currently senior administrator of the GCMS’s social media outlets.

Gabor Thomas - PhD (London). Associate Professor in Archaeology. Dr Gabor Thomas has research interests in the archaeology of rural settlements and monasteries in Anglo-Saxon England and objects and identities in early medieval north-west Europe. He has directed major excavations examining the royal and elite contexts of monastic foundation in Anglo-Saxon England, most recently at Lyminge, Kent (, and is currently leading an AHRC-funded academic network examining sites of royal residence in early medieval northern Europe: He also has a long-standing interest in the role played by personal adornment in the construction of early medieval social and cultural identity with particular reference to Anglo-Saxon/Viking-age metalwork and jewellery.

Research Interests of Fellows and Associate Members of the GCMS.

Jeremy Ashbee - English Heritage. Expert on medieval castles, especially those of Wales.

Malcolm Barber - BA, PhD (Nottingham), FRHistS. Professor Emeritus of History. Director of the Centre, 1986-89. Author of The Trial of the Templars (1978), The Two Cities: Medieval Europe 1050-1320 (1992), The New Knighthood: A History of the Order of the Temple (1994), Crusaders and Heretics, 12th to 14th Centuries (1995), The Cathars (1st edn 2000), and, with Keith Bate, The Templars (2002), and many articles on the Templars, the Cathars, popular crusading movements, the lepers in medieval society, western attitudes to Latin Greece, and the reign of Philip the Fair.Edited an annotated translation of Ambroise's History of the Holy War, with Marianne Ailes. Leverhulme Research Fellowship, 1997-98; Senior Fellow of the National Humanities Center in North Carolina, 1998-99; Visiting Professor at the University of East Carolina, 1999-2000.

Keith Bate - BA, MA (Exeter). Until retirement Senior Lecturer in Classics. Director of the Centre 1989-92. Maitre de Conférences Associé, University of Poitiers 1988-89, Visiting Professor of Latin, University of Poitiers 1993. Author of Gautier Map: Contes pour les gens de cour, (1993). Editor of Three Latin Comedies (1976), Waltharius (1978), Joseph of Exeter, Trojan War (1986), Excidium Troie (1986). Author of articles on medieval lyric and epic poetry, theatre and narrative techniques, as well as the annual Medieval Latin bibliography in The Year's Work in Modern Language Studies from 1968-88. Contributor to Medieval France: an Encyclopaedia (Garland, New York) and The Blackwell Encyclopaedia of Medieval Renaissance and Reformation Christian Thought (Oxford).

Nicola Coldstream - BA, PhD (Courtauld). Centre lecturer in architectural history since 1975. Lecturer, University of Sussex 1969-71, freelance teaching since 1971, President of the British Archaeological Association . Deputy editor Macmillan Dictionary of Art 1985-93. Editor, National Gallery Sound Guide, 1993-. Publications on English fourteenth-century architecture, and on medieval European architecture.

Christopher Hardman - MA, BLitt (Oxon). Senior Lecturer in English. Research interests and publications in late medieval and renaissance literature. Teaching interests in Old and Middle English.

Phillipa Hardman - BA (East Anglia), BLitt (Oxon). Director of the Centre 1995-98. Senior Lecturer in English and Centre lecturer in Palaeography. Author of articles on Middle English literature (particularly Chaucer and romances) and manuscript studies. Editor of The Heege MS (2000). Current research interests include late-medieval literary miscellanies. Currently working on an AHRC-funded grant (with Dr Marianne Ailes at the University of Bristol) on 'Charlemagne in England'.

Michael Holford - Expert in medieval economic history.

Amanda Holton - MA, DPhil (Oxon). Visiting Research Fellow and Sessional Lecturer. Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship 2005-7. Research interests focus on Chaucer, the medieval and early Renaissance love lyric in English, and poetics, with an emphasis on the way form generates meaning. Publications include The Sources of Chaucer's Poetics (Ashgate, 2008), an edition of Tottel's Miscellany (Penguin, 2011) with Tom MacFaul, and articles on a range of medieval and early modern topics. Currently working on a monograph on the role of rhyme in love lyric 1300-1579.

Edward Impey - English Heritage. Expert on the Tower of London and many other aspects of medieval British architecture.

Gill Knight - BA (Oxon), MA, PhD (Reading). Lecturer in Department of Classics until her retirement in 2010, now Research Fellow in Classics. Has published on the letters of Peter the Venerable, including The Correspondence between Peter the Venerable and Bernard of Clairvaux (2002).

Joanna Laynesmith - BA, MA, DPhil (York). Visiting Research Fellow at the GCMS. Has published various articles on the piety, politics and ideology of queens and noblewomen 10th-15th centuries. Author of The Last Medieval Queens: English Queenship 1445-1503 (2004) and Cecily Duchess of York (2017). Currently researching the politics of royal adultery in Britain 500-1135.

Rosa María Medina Granda - University of Oviedo, Asturias, Spain. Visiting research fellow 2011-12. Expert in medieval and modern Romance linguistics, especially Occitan and minority languages of Spain.

Warwick Rodwell - MA, DPhil, D.Lit (Oxon), D.Lit (Lond), DLC, FSA, FRHistS, FSAScot. Visiting Professor in Archaeology. Distinguished ecclesiastical archaeologist, awarded the Frend Medal by the Society of Antiquaries in 1988. Consultant Archaeologist to Westminster Abbey and the Cathedrals of Bristol and Wells. Author of the The Archaeology of the English Church (1st edn 1981), and still the standard work on the subject, together with major studies of Wells Cathedral, Dorchester Abbey and St Peter's, Barton-upon-Humber.

Neil Thomas - formerly Reader in medieval German literature at the University of Durham.

G. Hugo Tucker - MA, PhD (Cambridge). Professor of French. Author of The Poet's Odyssey: Joachim Du Bellay and the 'Antiquitez de Rome' (1990), Les Regrets de Joachim du Bellay (2000), Homo Viator: Itineraries of Exile, Displacement and Writing in Renaissance Europe (2003), and many articles on Renaissance poetry, intertextuality and exile writing. Has written on the French and Latin works of Arthur Rimbaud and other topics of French and neo-Latin literature. Editor of States of Exile and Displacement in Neo-Latin Writings of the Renaissance (1993), and of Forms of the 'Medieval' in the 'Renaissance' (2001). Visiting Fellow at the University of Virginia (1992), Guest Lecturer to the Belgian inter-university group on the study of humanism (1994), Visiting Professor at the University of Leuven (1996 -), Fellow of the European Humanities Research Centre, University of Oxford (1996 -). Associate Editor of Humanistica Lovaniensa: Journal of Neo-Latin Studies.

Margaret Yates - BA (Reading), DPhil (Oxon). Former Senior Lecturer in Medieval History. Research, teaching and publications consciously cross the historical divide between the medieval and early modern periods and focus on changes in society and the economy. Publications include Town and countryside in western Berkshire, c.1327-c.1600. Social and economic change (2007). The interdisciplinary nature of her research is illustrated in the recently completed KTP with the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum, Chicester.

Former members of the GCMS

Peter Noble -MA (Cantab), PhD (London). Emeritus Professor of French Studies. Director of the Centre 1983-86 and 2004-5. Author of Love and Marriage in Chrétien de Troyes (1982), Béroul and the Folie Tristan de Berne (1982), Le Voyage d'Oultremer de Nompar, Seigneur de Caumont(1975) and numerous articles on the French romances, chansons de geste, and medieval chronicles. Also, with Françoise Le Saux, Phillipa Hardman and Neil Thomas, The Growth of the Tristan and Iseut Legend in Wales, England, France and Germany (2003).

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