Autumn School in Old and Middle French and Medieval Latin

This Autumn School is organized for MA and PhD-students in Medieval Studies (art history, history, philosophy, literature, music…) who are required to work with documents in medieval languages. By offering intensive courses in Old and Middle French and in Medieval Latin, the Autumn School wants to remedy the fact that instruction of historical languages is becoming rather marginalized at many universities, while familiarity with this linguistic heritage remains of prime importance to new generations of medieval scholars.

The Autumn School starts with two days of parallel courses in Old and Middle French and in Medieval Latin, taught by a leading expert in the field. These two days consist of both teaching sessions and of workshops in which students are trained to analyze primary texts. On the second afternoon, students are invited to work with primary texts from their own research in specialized workshops. On the third day of the course, a symposium is organized in which, for each language, four case  studies will illustrate some recent approaches in research on medieval sources. In the space of three days, students will thus acquire a basic knowledge of either Old and Middle French or Medieval Latin
as well the skills to implement this knowledge in their own research projects.
For the course in Old and Middle French, no previous knowledge is required, though a basic familiarity with modern French is deemed necessary. For the course on Medieval Latin, students need to have already a basic knowledge of (classical) Latin grammar and vocabulary. Both courses are delivered in English. Since both courses are taught at the same time, participants can enroll for only one language.

Teaching staff:
For Old and Middle French: Thelma Fenster (Fordham University, NY), with the collaboration of Alexander Roose and Jan Dumolyn (both from Ghent University)
For Medieval Latin: Justin Stover (University of Oxford) and Julian Yolles (Harvard University), with the collaboration of Frédéric Van Vosselen and Els De Paermentier (both from Ghent University)


Ghent, Blandijnberg 2, Faculty Room (110.009) and
Meeting Room English (130.037)


  • 8.30 – 9.00: registration in Faculty Room
  • 9.00 – 10.45: session 1
  • 10.45 – 11.00: coffee break
  • 11.00 – 12.45: workshop 1


  • 13.45 – 15.30: session 2
  • 15.30 – 15.45: coffee break
  • 15.45 – 17.30: workshop 2

Ghent, Blandijnberg 2, Faculty Room (110.009) and Meeting Room English (130.037)

  • 9.00 – 10.45: session 3
  • 10.45 – 11.00: coffee break
  • 11.00 – 12.45: workshop 3


  • 13.45 – 15.30: session 4 (parallel sessions within each course: one for literary texts, one for administrative documents)
  • 15.30 – 15.45: coffee break
  • 15.45 – 17.30: workshop 4 (parallel sessions within each course: one for literary texts, one for administrative documents)

Ghent, Blandijnberg 2, Meeting Room English

  • 8.50 – 9.00: registration for new participants
  • 9.00 – 9.10: Welcome

SESSION on Medieval Latin
Chair: Els De Paermentier

  • 9.10 – 9.50: Julian Yolles, Harvard University – Latin literature in the Crusader States (1099-1187)
  • 9.50 – 10.30: Wim Verbaal, Ghent University – Latin Fiction
  • coffee break
  • 10.50 – 11.30: Michele Campopiano, University of York – Cathedral of texts. Dealing with a twelfth century compilation and its textual transmission (Guido da Pisa, 1118-1119)
  • 11.30 – 12.10: Jeroen Deploige, Ghent University and Mike Kestermont, University of Antwerp – Stylometry Applied on Medieval Latin. An Analysis of Collaborative Authorship in the Twelfth Century

lunch (not provided by the organizers)

SESSION on Old and Medieval French
Chair: Jan Dumolyn

  • 13.30 – 14.10: Christopher Fletcher, University of Paris I – How to explore the conceptual structures of later medieval Anglo-French texts using PALM and TXM?
  • 14.10 – 14.50: Jelle Koopmans, University of Amsterdam – What can administrative sources tell us, and what do they hide?
  • coffee break
  • 15.10 – 15.50: Marie-Madeleine Castellani, University of Lille 3 – Rutebeuf’s translation of the life of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary
  • 15.50 – 16.30: Godfried Croenen, University of Liverpool – Froissart, c’est un monde: Jean Froissart and the tradition of late medieval French prose chronicles

Each paper includes a presentation (30 min) and a discussion (10 min)

16.30 – 18.00: informal drinks reception

The application deadline for the entire course (three days) is August 31, 2013. There will be a maximum of 20 participants per language course. Applications should be sent to and must contain the following information: language course applied for, university where your MA or PhD will be obtained, mother tongue, level of
English, level of French (for those applying for Old + Middle French), research topic for your master’s or doctoral thesis.

Interested students and scholars not enrolled in the course can attend the sessions on Wednesday for free; they are kindly asked to register before October 1, 2013 with

Participants need to provide for their own accommodation and transport. Useful information can be found on the following websites:
for accommodation: (Youth Hostel)
for trains:

Lunches on Monday and Tuesday will be organized by the H. Pirenne Institute for Medieval Studies. Evening meals and lunch on Wednesday are not provided by the organizers.

There is a registration fee of 100 EUR for those who want to attend the entire course (three days). This fee is to be paid – after confirmation has been received of acceptance in the summer school – into the account of Ghent University, Sint-Pietersnieuwstraat 25, B-9000 GHENT. Account details: IBAN: BE59-3900-9658-0026 – SWIFT: BBRU BE BB
900. The VAT-number of Ghent University is BE 0248.015.142. The bank transfer should mention “Historical Languages 2013”. Payment of this fee is considered as confirmation of registration.
The registration fee is waived for MA and PhD students from Ghent University, from the Onderzoeksschool Mediëvistiek (Netherlands) and from the University of Oxford.
Students and scholars attending only the sessions on Wednesday are not required to pay a registration fee.

This project is organized by the Henri Pirenne Institute for Medieval Studies at Ghent University and funded by the Ghent Doctoral School for Arts, Humanities and Law, by the Dutch Research School for Medieval Studies, by the Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature and by the Ghent educational project internationalisation@home.

Organizing committee
Jeroen Deploige (Ghent University, chair of the Henri Pirenne Institute for Medieval History)
Helen Swift (University of Oxford, Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages)
Jan Dumolyn (Ghent University, Department of History)
Wim Verbaal (Ghent University, Department of Literature)
Maximiliaan Martens (Ghent University, Department of Art History)
Martine De Reu (Ghent University, coordinator of the MA in Historical Linguistics and Literature)

More information

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