All posts filed under: Medieval

Landed in Paris

So after what seems a long day of travelling, we have finally arrived safe and sound in Paris. After heading on an early 9am train to London, we then departed via Eurostar to the French capital. This was my first time of using the Eurostar, and it was much quicker than I had anticipated. Once we got to the hostel, and after we had unpacked our belongings, we met with our two tutors and headed out to the Montmartre area for a lovely dinner with both the groups. I just love Paris, there’s so much to see, and it seems every street you walk down offers you a new and different glimpse of Paris. We headed to the Moulin Rouge after of food, and lets just say that we saw some sights that are youngsters should not be seeing! Tomorrow ‘The Virgin’s Places’ are off to Notre-Dame Cathedral and the Lourve. But I’m hoping to have the time to quickly go to the Sainte-Chapelle, which is in between these two places. I cannot wait to …

Busy, busy, busy

Sorry for the lack of blog posting, it’s been an incredibly busy week! So, what I have been doing the last few weeks? Well, this term I started by new module for the Spring/Summer term: The Virgin’s Places. This term I will be exploring all about the Virgin Mary in various places around medieval Europe, focusing specifically on Chartres Cathedral in France, the city of Siena and in the Spanish kingdom of Castile. This course is great fun, and its really fascinating to be studying the extent to which these people from the Medieval ages saw Mary as their intercessor, guardian and divine source of help. This week we’re looking at Duccio’s amazing panel painting Maesta, which if you haven’t seen, it’s stunning! As part of the module I am back off to Paris next week! – boy, I cannot get away from there, 3 times in the last 7 months, not that I am complaining. Luckily we are travelling to Paris by train, which was a great relief to me and other students who …

This week – Alfonso X’s Cantigas

This week in ‘Death and Devotion’ we have moved swiftly from Paris and England, and are now focusing on Castile and Leon. Within this, we are primarily looking at King Alfonso X’s Cantigas! The Cantigas are a collection of poems about the Virgin Mary which would have been performed in the court, and during the feast days of the Virgin. I’m not going to lie, before encountering this week I was a little skeptical as to what the Cantigas would sound like. But after reading more about them, the historical context and political propaganda behind their conception; I actually quite like them! Here are a few for you to enjoy! I think it’s fascinating that people during the medieval period would have listened to these, and would have invested emotional resonance into them. History of Art definitely incorporates pretty much everything you can think of, and I think that this week proves it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kwh0m5EzRXg Cantigas 137 is my favourite, it’s just so cheerful! I feel like I am actually back in the Middle Ages listening …

Day 1 Paris Trip

So today is the first day of our trip to Paris, and what a great day it has been! This morning the ‘Death and Deovtion’ group ventured to the amazing Saint Denis church. There we explored and analysed the stained glass, the tombs of various French Kings and Queens and the crypt! After spending the morning there, we took the metro and emerged on the isle which houses Notre Dame and Sainte Chapelle. In Notre-Dame we went around the treasury,  looking at the various reliquaries that the church possesses and then we had the rest of the day off! Tomorrow we will go to Chartres Cathedral, which I’m really looking forward to! It’s great to be seeing all these places in person, especially because I’ve been studying them for the last 4 weeks. It seems even stranger seeing as I only come to Paris about 3 months ago – since coming to the same places again, I’ve noticed just how much more I can see in the various buildings since doing my course. Posted from …

Paris awaits

Three weeks today, myself and my fellow students on the ‘Death and Devotion’ module will be travelling to Paris for the week, and I cannot wait! I was lucky enough to go to Paris in the summer with my family, and going again with the department will be an incredibly enriching experience. We will be heading to Sainte-Chapelle, Notre Dame Cathedral, St Denis and venturing out to explore Chartres Cathedral. I have never been to St Denis or Chartres, so it will be great to experience some new, as well as familiar sites.