Hullo there! This is an occasional column, or similar, by me, Jonathan Jarrett, M. A. (Cantab.), Ph. D. (Lond.), for whatever may be occupying my mind on matters medieval and so forth. Matters medieval is kind of what I do: I have spent much of the last ten years employed either as a lecturer in medieval history or as someone working on medieval coins, and when I’m not teaching medieval stuff I’m probably reading about it, finding it in archives or standing on it. Or, of course, writing about it, including here. All this builds on research projects and employment in various academic and para-academic rôles in my past.
What were those projects and rôles, you may ask? And if the point of this exercise isn’t self-publicity, what is it eh? Well, I:
- worked on the political relations of the kingdoms of really early medieval Britain at Masters level, which left me with stuff to say about the supposed matriliny of the Picts and the structure of the Pictish kingdom, as well as some ideas about its relationships with other kingdoms;
- moved on to a field with actual evidence for my Ph.D., whose title was (is) “Pathways of Power in late-Carolingian Catalonia”, which you can download here and which looked at the way in which you can reconstruct power relations and therefore politics (high- and low-level) through the associations of people in charter material;
- published a prize-winning paper about a nunnery run by a Count’s daughter;
- started presenting pretty frequently at conferences here and there—the sidebar should tell you where I’m next doing this;
- taught the subject in, er, five different higher education institutions (and if you want to know what and where, my CV is here);
- meanwhile, worked as Research Assistant in the Department of Coins and Medals at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, where I did a few bits and pieces you can see on the web, published a professional booklet and article, and enjoyed a post that kept me alive for several years in very good company;
- and while that was happening I was able meanwhile to publish a couple more academic papers and reviews, and continue presenting and organising conference papers;
- finally made the next move, to ‘the Oxford’, where I had a thoroughly good time for three years, not least because various print delays then resolved and I became also the author of a book, a book chapter, another article, another review and then another article and another book chapter! You can buy the book here, if you want (and why wouldn’t you?)
- Then from there I finally left the Golden Triangle and taught in Birmingham for nearly a year, in the course of which I and a colleague managed to publish each other and several other worthies in a book of essays and I involuntarily convinced many people I was an Anglo-Saxonist.
- At the end of that, the coins claimed me back and I became Interim Curator of Coins at the Barber Institute of Fine Arts, where I got money to play with X-rays, put up an exhibition, and busily bossed volunteers around to get the Barber’s rather fine coin collection onto the web slice by slice while also sneaking out the odd publication.
- And then, at last, secure employment hoved into sight, and I update this now as Lecturer in Early Medieval History at the University of Leeds, somewhat nervously trying to fill the shoes of Professor Ian Wood. A tall order, and I’m still measuring up, but it’s looking hopeful as things develop!
And there I currently am, with various further plans in ferment meanwhile. The sidebar should enable you to see what I’m busying myself with in that line. Anyway, this will serve for an introduction. If you need to know more, comment here or else use the contact details on this webpage or my Academia.edu page to get in touch with me. I hope you enjoy reading the blog!
Lastly, however, I should say two things: firstly, that this blog is my own opinions and does not in any way reflect the views of my employers, whoever they may currently be, and secondly, that all text on this blog except names, titles and quoted material is my own, and that I claim copyright in it under English law. You may not reproduce it without my permission except as governed by fair use legislation in English law. I have pursued infringements on my material before and will do again if necessary. On the other hand, I make no claim of copyright on the images used in the blog, many of which are not mine anyway; they remain subject to the copyrights or licenses under which I obtained them and the right to use them, where that was restricted, and those that I made, I place in the public domain except where they depict objects held by public institutions. There’s a legal argument about what rights they can claim in my images, but I don’t want to have it because of here!