My dissertation, “How England was Called Albion: The Legendary History of England in Script and Print, 1400-1575,” examines the ways old histories take on new meanings in the medieval and early modern periods. The legendary descent of the Britons from Brutus, the great-grandson of Aeneas, formed the core of many vernacular works that circulated in England at the time. I hope to shed light on why these stories were still meaningful and desirable histories in the fifteenth and sixteenth century by paying careful attention to the ways in which these works were written, as well as the manuscripts and printed books that they circulated in.
Before coming to Johns Hopkins, I was an undergraduate at the University of Chicago, where I first began to study the legendary history of England in the manuscripts of the Middle English Prose Brut chronicle. I received my MPhil in Medieval history from the University of Cambridge in 2010, for a dissertation on the early printed works of the same. I am also interested in the reception and debate over historical authority in the medieval and early modern periods, (as well as in our own) and in the study of manuscripts and early printed books as cultural and intellectual artifacts.
Main Advisor: Professor Spiegel