Bringing the Holy Land Home

Bringing the Holy Land Home: The Crusades, Chertsey Abbey, and the Reconstruction of a Medieval Masterpiece (Jan. 26 – April 6, 2023)
Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery, Prior Performing Arts Center, the College of the Holy Cross, 1 College St., Worcester, MA

“Bringing the Holy Land Home” explores the impact of art objects manufactured in the eastern Mediterranean on the visual culture of medieval England and western Europe. At its center are an iconic set of mold-made tiles, discovered at Chertsey Abbey outside of London, but probably commissioned for London’s Westminster Palace around 1250. These include a famous pair of roundels showing the English king Richard the Lionheart and the Ayyubid sultan Saladin (Salah al-Din) in combat. Excavated from the ruined site of Chertsey Abbey in the 19th century, the original composition of the fragmented tiles has been reconstructed, including their lost Latin texts. The reconstruction has demonstrated not only that the entire mosaic addressed the theme of the crusades, but also that its design evoked that of imported Byzantine and Islamic silks.

Carried home by crusaders, Byzantine and Islamic silks as well as ceramics, metalwork and other items were highly valued by European audiences, who incorporated them into sacred objects, displayed them in places of esteem, and imitated their designs – as was the case with the Chertsey tiles. The composition of the Chertsey floor relies on visual traditions of textiles developed by Muslim and Orthodox Christian artists in the eastern Mediterranean, even while the iconography attends to the theme of English victory over foreign opponents. By pairing the Chertsey tiles with contemporaneous European and eastern Mediterranean objects, this exhibition endeavors to illuminate the specific and complex contexts that informed the tiles’ production and design.

Along with the Chertsey tiles, on loan from the British Museum, this exhibition also displays the Morgan Library’s Crusader Bible and medieval objects from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, the Worcester art Museum, Dumbarton Oaks, and Harvard Art Museums.

Exhibition website at

Exhibition catalogue with contributions from Michael Wood (OBE), Andrea Achi, Paroma Chatterjee, Meredith Fluke, Eurydice Georganteli, Sean Gilsdorf, Sarah Guerin, Cynthia Hahn, Eva R. Hoffman, Richard A. Leson, A. L. McClanan, Nina Masin-Moyer ’22, Grace P. Morrissey ’22, Suleiman Mourad, David Nicolle, Scott Redford, Euan Roger, Alicia Walker, and Elizabeth Dospel Williams, available at

Thurs. Jan 26, Opening Lecture & Reception
Thurs. Jan 26, 4pm, Rehm Library
Dr. William Purkis, “Bringing the Holy Land Home: Crusaders, Relics, and the Transformation of Latin Christendom’s Sacred Material World.” Dr. Purkis is Head of School of History and Cultures at the University of Birmingham.
5:30pm, Opening Reception, Cantor Gallery
Sat. March 25, 8:30am-7pm, “Bringing the Holy Land Home” conference, held in association with the NEMC (New England Medieval Consortium) 

Registration details will be posted at in the coming weeks.

Lloyd de Beer, the British Museum
Paroma Chatterjee, University of Michigan
Paul Cobb, University of Pennsylvania
Matthew Gabriele, Virginia Tech
Sarah Guerin, University of Pennsylvania
Cynthia Hahn, Hunter College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York
Eva Hoffman, Tufts University
Richard Leson, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Amanda Luyster, College of the Holy Cross
Suleiman Mourad, Smith College
Nicholas Paul, Fordham University
Matthew Reeve, Queen’s University
Euan Roger, National Archives, Kew
Naomi Speakman, the British Museum
Elizabeth Williams, Dumbarton Oaks

Finally, if you would like to bring a group to visit the show on any date that the gallery is open (M-F 10 a.m. – 5 pm | Sat noon – 5 pm, Jan. 26-April 6), just email me to make arrangements.  Admission and parking are free.

Conference: Multilingual Literary Practices In A Multicultural World, From Archaic Greece To The Byzantine Empire

Conference: Multilingual Literary Practices In A Multicultural World, From Archaic Greece To The Byzantine Empire
November 14, 2023 – November 15, 2023


Multilingualism in the ancient world has been of great interest to linguists and literary scholars alike. Linguists investigate borrowings and structural convergences between two or more languages and explore broader sociolinguistic questions such as regional diversi­fication and linguistic ideologies (e.g.  Adams et al. 2002; Bentein 2016; Clackson et al. 2020; Hogeterp 2018; Kaimio 1979). Literary scholars look into the socio-cultural context within which literary works were produced and received and the linguistic background that Greek-speaking and writing authors had – including the linguistic norms and stan­dards that they tried to uphold in the Greek language itself – framing it in the broader question of (the struggle for) cultural identity (Adams 2020; Andrade 2013; Bozia 2018; Goldhill 2011, Lee at al. 2014). For both research strands, Archaic Greek dialectal variety and its literary manifestations, as well as multidialectal and multilingual contacts in Classical Greek, have been of interest. Similarly, the Post-classical period (including the Hellenistic, Roman, and Late Antique periods) has been of particular relevance as a time of parti­cularly intense language contact.

Scholars working in these two research strands tend to focus on different types of sources – literary and non-literary sources such as papyri and inscriptions – and adopt different methodologies, focusing on different types of research questions. The main aim of this conference is to bring together researchers, methodologies, and sources with the objective of developing a more integrated ap­proach toward multi­lingual practices in various ways:

  • by developing a diachronic approach to the study of Greek and its contact languages, from the Archaic to the Byzantine period,
  • by including types of sources traditionally neglected, such as translations and bilingual metalinguistic sources like grammars & dictionaries,
  • by situating multilingual literature in its socio-cultural context, looking at people with multilingual competencies, the intellectual communities in which they operated, and the factors driving particular linguistic and literary choices,
  • by integrating new theoretical approaches, such as cognitive and socio-pragmatic ones, to create a framework for the study of multilingualism in the ancient Greek world.
  • The general goal of the conference is to understand better what the linguistic repertoire of multilingual speakers and writers looked like, how and why writers brought together features (ranging from specific linguistic patterns to larger and more abstract cultural forms such as genres) from different cultural traditions, and what the intended effect was, or, vice versa, why they consciously resisted them. Importantly, under ‘multilingual competencies,’ we also understand the existence of different linguistic registers and dialects inside a single language. Finally, the conference focuses on literary sources, but it is also interested in overlaps with genres that have traditionally been defined as ‘non-literary,’ a distinction that recent research has problematized (e.g., Fournet 2013).


  • Systematic studies of multilingualism in the ancient Greek and Byzantine worlds:
    • Cognitive and socio-pragmatic approaches to ancient Greek, its evolution, and contact languages
    • (Re)-definitions and applications of concepts of linguistics and sociolinguistics on Greek linguistic competencies
  • Consideration of different forms of multilingualism (translations, “errors” in translations, lexica, etc.)
  • Studies of linguistic varieties in different literary genres (such as dialectal varieties) as forms of multilingualism
  • Analysis of multilingual lexica/grammars
  • Studies of private writings and others meant for public consumption to determine levels of multilingualism
  • Considerations of multilingualism in literature in conjunction with multiculturalism (lexical and social variations, multilingual literary practices alongside multicultural ones)
  • Insights into the reception of ancient texts through translations.

A thematic issue with selected contributions will be published by The Journal of Literary Multilingualism. Leiden: Brill.

JAMES CLACKSON, University of Cambridge
MARK JANSE, Ghent University

Interested scholars are invited to submit proposals (500 words max) by December 15th, 2022 to Eleni Bozia (, Klaas Bentein (, and Chiara Monaco (

Adams, J. N., Mark Janse, and Simon Swain. 2002. Bilingualism in Ancient Society: Language Contact and the Written Text. Oxford ; New York: Oxford University Press.

Adams, Sean. 2020. Greek Genres and Jewish Authors. Negotiating Literary Culture in the Greco-Roman Era. Baylor University Press.

Andrade, Nathanael J. 2013. Syrian Identity in the Greco-Roman World. Greek Culture in the Roman World. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Bentein, Klaas. 2016. Verbal Periphrasis in Ancient Greek: Have- and Be-Constructions. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Bozia, Eleni. 2018. “Immigration as acculturation: voluntary displacement in the Roman Empire.” In D. Arroyo (ed.) Displacement in language, Literature and Culture – 2016 CMLL Symposium, Selected Proceedings. Benalmádena, Málaga, Spain. 49-82.

Clackson, J., Patrick James, Katherine McDonald, Livia Tagliapetra, and Nicholas Zair. (eds.) 2020. Migration, Mobility, and Language Contact in and around the Ancient Mediterranean. Cambridge University Press.

Fournet, Jean-Luc. 2013. “Culture Grecque et Document Dans l’Égypte de l’Antiquité Tardive.” Journal of Juristic Papyrology 43: 135–62.

Goldhill, Simon. 2011. Being Greek under Rome. Cambridge, GBR: Cambridge University Press.

Hogeterp, Albert L. A. 2018. Semitisms in Luke’s Greek: A Descriptive Analysis of Lexical and Syntactical Domains of Semitic Language Influence in Luke’s Gospel. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen Zum Neuen Testament 401. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck.

Kaimio, Jorma. 1979. “The Romans and the Greek Language.” Commentationes Humanarum Litterarum 64: 1–379.

Lee, B.T., Ellen Finkelpearl, and Luca Graverini (eds.) 2014. Apuleius and Africa. Routledge.

ELENI BOZIA, University of Florida
KLAAS BENTEIN, Ghent University
CHIARA MONACO, Ghent University

CFP: Ninth North American Syriac Symposium — Yale, June 11-14, 2023

Call for Papers: The Ninth North American Syriac Symposium
“Syriac at the Center”

June 11-14, 2023
Yale University

New Haven, Connecticut

Held every four years since 1991, the North American Syriac Symposium brings together scholars and students for exchange and discussion on a wide variety of topics related to the language, literature, and cultural history of Syriac Christianity, extending chronologically from the first centuries CE to the present day and geographically from Syriac Christianity’s homeland in the Middle East to South India, China, and the worldwide diaspora.

In 2023, the Ninth North American Syriac Symposium will be held in person at Yale University, in New Haven, Connecticut, June 11 to June 14. Most of the event will be hosted at the Yale Divinity School, with the opportunity to visit the Dura-Europos exhibit at the Yale University Art Gallery and to see an exhibition of Syriac manuscripts from the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library.

The theme of this Symposium is “Syriac at the Center.” Syriac has often been treated as an auxiliary language in the modern humanities, an adjunct tool to scholarship on Early Christianity, Late Antiquity, early Islam, the histories of theology and of science, and other areas of inquiry. It is an “extra language” in humanistic curricula. This conference welcomes papers on topics that treat Syriac as central, not peripheral, to scholarly investigation. How do our research subjects look when we stand with Syriac and regard other traditions and areas as peripheral?

Positions of center and periphery are matters of perspective, easily leading to one-sided views. We therefore encourage papers on this theme that rise above mere encomia to the importance of the Syriac traditions, but go further, showing how centering Syriac reveals new solutions to old problems, as well as new problems and areas of inquiry, and complicates current scholarly assumptions.

We welcome particularly papers addressing

  • Syriac and translation activity
  • Syriac manuscripts, documents, and epigraphy
  • Syriac geographical thought
  • Social and economic history using Syriac sources
  • Bodily and ritual practices
  • Christological considerations
  • Development of canon law
  • Relations with the religious “other” from the Syriac Christian perspective
  • Philoxenus of Mabbug on the sesquimillennial anniversary of his death

Any investigation into the Syriac traditions has the potential to contribute to the main theme of the symposium. We therefore also welcome generally presentations by scholars on their current research, even if they do not directly address the symposium’s theme.

Please submit a title and abstract of proposed communication (150–200 words), to by January 2, 2023. Accepted speakers will be notified in February 2023.

For inquiries concerning the symposium, please do not hesitate to reach out to

The organizers, 

Jimmy Daccache, Maria Doerfler, Kevin van Bladel

NB: This symposium coincides with the 6th Yale Liturgy Conference, June 12-15, 2023, held at the Maurice R. Greenberg Conference Center, about five minutes’ walk from the Yale Divinity School. We expect to host a joint panel between both events and welcome proposals for contributions.


The Byzantinist Society of Cyprus (BSC/ΒΕΚ: Βυζαντινολογική Εταιρεία Κύπρου) invites papers to be presented at the Fourth International Conference on Byzantine and Medieval Studies, to be held in Nicosia, Cyprus, between the 17th and the 19th of March 2023.

Scholars, researchers, and students are encouraged to present their ongoing research, work-in-progress or fieldwork report on any aspect of the history, archaeology, art, architecture, literature, philosophy and religion of Cyprus and the broader Mediterranean region during the Byzantine, Medieval and Ottoman periods.

The languages of the conference will be Greek, English, French and German.

Deadline for abstracts: December 19, 2022.

Find attached the call for papers and the Conference poster.

“Provisioning of Late Antique Constantinople: Annona Civilis and Beyond”, 2-3 December 2022

Online International Conference: “Provisioning of Late Antique Constantinople: Annona Civilis and Beyond”

Organizing Committee: Michael Decker, Koray Durak, Paolo Maranzana and Nevra Necipoğlu

In spite of its importance, the provisioning of late antique Constantinople is an understudied subject compared to the supply of the city in the Middle Byzantine period or the provisioning of Imperial Rome. The scholarly production on the subject is mostly dated to the twentieth century. The online conference, organized by the Byzantine Studies Research Center of Boğaziçi University and entitled “Provisioning of Late Antique Constantinople: Annona Civilis and Beyond,” aims to bring together the new evidence from recent excavations in both modern Istanbul and in other regions of the Empire that contributed to the supply of Constantinople (from the fourth century to the early Middle Ages) as well as new insights resulting from the re-reading of written sources in the light of new theoretical approaches. This process will most definitely lead to a new understanding of annona civilis, and, as a result, to a deeper knowledge of a major facet of the economic life of the late antique Eastern Roman Empire.

The conference will be held ONLINE on 2-3 December 2022.

Please send an email message to for more information and registration.

Dionysius Circle Online Symposium, October 8

Dionysius Circle 2022 Symposium
exploring the divine procession in The Divine Names
Saturday, October 8th via Zoom
9am–12pm, 1pm–4pm EST
Register here:
Marcus Hines
The divine processions and the cosmic hierarchy in Divine Names V
Miklós Vassányi
Ontological Prayer in Part III of On the Divine Names and the Syriac tradition

Christos Terezis + Lydia Petridou (keynote)
the Divine “processions” in Dionysius the Areopagite and the “henads” in Proclus
Ryan Haecker
Gothic Fireflies: The Apophatic and Analogical Grammar of Pseudo-Dionsyius’ ‘Divine Names’

Gregory T. Doolan
Aquinas on ‘The Good’ as the Principal Name of God: An Aristotelian Reading of Dionysius
Tikhon Alexander Pino
The Logoi, the Divine Energies, and the Processions of Providence in St Gregory Palamas

14-15 octobre : XIIIèmes Rencontres internationales des jeunes chercheurs en études byzantines

Via the Association des étudiants du monde byzantin
We have the pleasure of announcing with you that the 12th edition of the AEMB International Post-Graduate Conference will take place in Paris on the 14th and 15th of October. The theme of this year’s conference is “Seeing, Not Seeing, and Being Seen: Vision as construction and as experience in the Byzantine World”. There will be presentations given in both English and French. We hope to see you at the Institut national d’histoire de l’art, Room Fabri de Peiresc.
The conference will be followed by the general assembly of the association, and the election of the 2022-2023 board. Every position (president, treasurer, secretary) is open, we hope to have many candidates!

UK Late Antiquity Network Call for Papers: Taste and Disgust in Late Antiquity, Leeds IMC 2023 (deadline extended)

We would like to inform you that the deadline for abstracts for the UK Late Antiquity Network’s IMC 2023 strand – ‘Taste and Disgust in Late Antiquity’ – has been extended to Monday 12th September 2022.

The link to the full CfP can be viewed here:

Abstracts should be limited to 300 words and accompanied by a short academic bio. The deadline for submission is 11:59pm (GMT) on Monday 12th September 2022. Abstract submissions and/or queries should be sent to

Applications from masters students, those in the early stages of their PhD, and those without a current institutional affiliation are encouraged. Additionally, applications from female and non-binary scholars are also particularly welcome. Applicants are strongly encouraged to interpret taste in late antiquity broadly within the context of their own area of research.

With best wishes,

Henry Anderson (Exeter) and Ella Kirsh (Brown)

LAN Steering Committee

Call for Papers: Panelists for Mary Jaharis Center Sponsored Session at 58th ICMS

The Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture invites papers for its sponsored panel at the 58th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, May 11–13, 2023.

Audience and Action in Byzantine Ceremonies
Session organized by Nikolas Churik (Princeton University) & Erik Ellis (Hillsdale College)

This panel invites a wide-range of papers on the question of popular presence and participation in Byzantine public ritual. In particular, the panel is interested in idealized and non-idealized participation. It aims to consider especially how the people are understood to take part in public ceremonies through their normative representatives (guilds, nationalities, ethnic groups) or upset those norms due to some limiting factor (geography, social status, ability). The papers may come from relevant disciplines (literary/area studies, history, religious studies, art history, among others) and from any relevant linguistic or cultural field.

To read the full call for papers, please visit

Abstracts of 300 words are due September 15, 2022. Abstracts must be submitted using CONFEX, the conference portal ( The session will take place in-person.

Please submit any questions about the panel to Nick Churik (nchurik[at]

The Mary Jaharis Center will reimburse session participants up to $600 maximum for scholars based in North America and up to $1200 maximum for those coming from outside North America. Funding is through reimbursement only; advance funding cannot be provided. Eligible expenses include conference registration, transportation, and food and lodging. Receipts are required for reimbursement. For scholars participating remotely, the Mary Jaharis Center will reimburse participants for conference registration.

Ninth North American Syriac Symposium, June 11-14, 2023

The Steering Committee of the Ninth North American Syriac Symposium, in collaboration with the NASS Advisory Board, are delighted to announce that NASS ’23 will take place at Yale University from June 11-14, 2023.

We anticipate opening registration and a full Call for Papers for the event in September ’22. In the meantime, we are honored to announce the keynote speakers for this event:

Aaron Butts (Catholic University of America)
Muriel Debié (L’École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris)
Cornelia Horn (Martin-Luther-Universität, Halle-Wittenberg)
Ute Possekel (Harvard University)
Hidemi Takahashi (University of Tokyo)
Alexander Treiger (Dalhousie University)

We warmly welcome your inquiries and look forward to welcoming you to Yale next summer.

All good wishes,
Kevin van Bladel
Jimmy Daccache
Maria E. Doerfler
(on behalf of the steering committee)

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