Marking Time: Chronometry, Chronology and Literary Culture in Anglo-Saxon England.
Royal Holloway, University of London
From the 7th century all the way to the Norman Conquest, few areas of intellectual development were more pervasive or contentious in Anglo-Saxon England than the calculation and measurement of time. Despite this, the relationship between Anglo-Saxon cultural preoccupations with ‘time’ and poetic literature remains unclear. My study aims to address comprehensively this knowledge gap by considering Old English poetic works alongside the conceptions of time expressed in early medieval scientific texts, calendars, and religious practices. Working across the disciplinary boundaries of literary and textual criticism, and the histories of religion and science, it seeks to understand the ways in which early medieval ‘chronometric communities’ could mark out the limits of their identity and beliefs within a highly complex literary culture.