ISAS Conference, 1985

University of Cambridge, England

The second ISAS meeting took place in Cambridge from 19 to 23 August 1985. The local arrangements committee, led by Peter Clemoes, organized a program that features twenty-three papers, the first nine being on the theme ‘England South of the Humber during the Seventh, Eighth and Ninth Centuries’ (H. R. Loyn, N. Brooks, S. Loyn, D. A. Hinton, M. G. Welch, H. Volrath, M. Lapidge, M. Brown, J. M. Bately, W. Goffart, É. Ó Carragáin, M. Irvine, P. W. Conner, T. D. Hill, W. P. Stoneman, R. Torkar, S. Keynes, D. W. Rollason, P. Lendinara, R. E. Buckalew, J. McN. Dodgson, N. Lund, S. B. Greenfield). There was also a panel discussion by D. G. Calder, R. Cramp, A. J. Frantzen, and P. Wormald. This meeting was to establish the pattern for subsequent meetings (excepting that at Toronto) by distributing the program over a period from Monday to Friday, and using Wednesday as a day for excursions. At Cambridge, the first Honorary Members of the Society were named, the first panel discussion on concerns relevant to the discipline was organized, and a schedule of reduced dues for students was discussed. This last item was not finally authorized until 1991. Rosemary Cramp was elected First Vice-President, and Roberta Frank moved to the Presidency, thus bringing the Society to North America for the first time in 1987.

Simon Keynes organized an exhibition of manuscripts and books in the Wren Library, Trinity College, while the University Library turned its entrance hall into an exhibition of its Latin and vernacular manuscript treasures. The University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology showed Anglo-Saxon material from the Cambridge region, while the Fitzwilliam Museum offered an exhibition of Anglo-Saxon coins. Heffers Bookshop printed a catalogue of publications in Anglo-Saxon studies in print, and hosted a wine reception among displayed copies.

Special features of the program included several receptions. The opening reception was held in the Wren Library, at the invitation of the Master and Fellows of Trinity College, the Master and Fellows of Emmanuel College, and the Cambridge University Press. At the conference’s special dinner in the Great Hall at Trinity College, Robert W. Burchfield, Chief Editor of the Oxford Dictionaries, gave a general address. There was also a recital of Anglo-Saxon words and music.

The participants made an excursion to Sutton Hoo, where Martin Carver, Director of the Sutton Hoo Research Project, gave a brief report on the current work, and Boydell and Brewer hosted a party. The second excursion was a full day to Repton (speakers M. Biddle, B. Kjølbye-Biddle, and H. Taylor) and Brixworth (speakers D. Parson and D. Sutherland).