Medieval manuscripts are precious objects, each one a unique piece of art, literature, devotion, and learning. From production via the first readers, to dealers and libraries, they often pass through many hands leaving traces of use, engagement, care, and repair. This talk will explore the history behind a group of manuscripts written and illustrated by nuns in Medingen (North Germany) shortly before the Reformation, from their production in the convent, their medieval use and their journeys as devotional books and antiquarian objects to their current location.

A special focus will be on twelve volumes that came to the UK and three prayer-books that stayed in North Germany and there became shelf-companions of the St Albans Psalter when it was brought by the English Benedictines to the Diocese of Hildesheim. In the criss-crossing of manuscripts between Germany and England, a cultural history of European reading and writing unfolds.

A sneak preview of the manuscripts is available at

Image: Nuns and lay people celebrating Easter together in a prayerbook from the North German convent of Medingen now in Oxford, the Bodleian Library, MS. Lat. liturg. f. 4, fol. 174v (

Speaker: Professor Henrike Lähnemann, Professor of Medieval German Literature and Linguistics at the University of Oxford

Date & Time: Tuesday 20 July, 7.30-9pm

Cost: £10 (students £6)

Venue: Online via Zoom

If you’d like to attend the event but are not free to join us live, please do buy a ticket and you’ll receive the joining details (in case your plans change) and an email detailing how to receive a recording of the talk.

Joining on Zoom on the night

As this talk will be hosted over Zoom, participants will need access to a device which has audio in order to be able to hear. You can also join by dialling in using a telephone, but won't be able to see the speaker or any visual aids. 

Instructions for joining the talk will be sent via email between 12-12.30pm on the day of the event.

If you have not received these details by 12.30pm, please call 01727 890212 before 3pm or email us. 

Click here to find out more about using Zoom for our events 

How to Book

You can book online here using the button below, or call the Box Office on 01727 890290. Tickets will be on sale until noon on the day of the event. Please ensure that you provide a current email address when you book.