Medieval Rites Conference


It was recently my pleasure to give a paper at Yale University’s Institute for Sacred Music, as part of a conference entitled “Medieval Rites: Reading the Writing,” organized by the distinguished medieval musicologist Peter Jeffery and my fellow Rankin alumnus Henry Parkes (about whom I have raved elsewhere). The conference was unusual in bringing together experts on both Western and Eastern liturgy.

My paper was called “Chant on the Edge: Antiphoner Texts Among the Marginalia of Cambridge, Corpus Christi College, MS 41.” I presented some preliminary results of my research on this manuscript, which I am currently editing for the Henry Bradshaw Society.

While at Yale, I was also a guest of the “Song Lab” of the Music Department, which meets to sing music from facsimiles of early notations and to discuss papers submitted in advance. I had the benefit of their comments on a draft of an article I’m working on: “The Muchelney Breviary Fragment: London, British Library, Additional 56488, fols. i, 1–5.” But the best part was singing through Absalon fili mi from the original notation. Alas, we transposed it up a fourth to accommodate the sopranos, so I wasn’t able to try for the low B-flat at the end!

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