James Lang's M.A. thesis, `Hogbacks in north-eastern England' (1967), although now fifty years old, was a pioneering study of these Viking Age grave-covers in the shape of a house but with bears clasping the ends. Although much work has been done on these since, most authors include a reference to this thesis. It remains one of the primary pieces of research on sculpture and underpins many new avenues of research. http://etheses.dur.ac.uk/12000/
Follow us on Facebook for news updates and discussion on early medieval stone sculpture. We've recently uploaded some colour images from the Early Cornish Sculpture volume XI.
As always, do let us have your views and comments on the usability of this site and our new social media page.
The release of Volumes IV and V means that items of sculpture from a wide geographical area are now available for study. Counties include: Durham and Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmoreland and Lancashire, York and Eastern Yorkshire, South East England and Lincolnshire. The catalogue for volume VI is on its way. We will also make available the chapters from these volumes as an additional free resource. Do contact us and comment on the site and its usability. Queries and questions are always welcome.
We're delighted to announce the publication this year of The Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture XII, Nottinghamshire, authored by Paul Everson and David Stocker. This new publication provides an authoritative listing, description and illustration of all examples of early medieval decorated stone sculpture in Nottinghamshire. New information revealed by systematic study demonstrates the major contribution that this category of material can make to an obscure and under-investigated period in Midlands history. Nottinghamshire emerges with a distinctive identity in the pre-conquest period, having strong connections both with the Mercian state to its south and with the Northumbrians to the north.
Dr David Petts of Durham University is currently working together with Jane Stockdale and the York Archaeological Trust and Gareth Beale from the York University Centre for Digital Heritage on a community project undertaking Reflectance Transformation Imaging recording the early medieval and medieval sculpture currently housed at the Church of Holy Redeemer in York which was built in the 1960s but incorporates nearly all the Anglo-Scandinavian sculpture from St Mary Bishophill Senior. The end result will be a new element on the church website hosting the RTI images and a viewer, and new display panels in the church.
The York and Eastern Yorkshire catalogue, containing a quantity and range of carvings revealed by excavations at York, has transformed our appreciation of the sculpture from this major medieval centre. The carvings speak of a fusion of cultural impulses over a period when York was the political and economic focus of renewed settlement. The author, the late James Lang, held the post of Inspector of Ancient Monuments, English Heritage.
A new volume of papers dedicated to exploring early medieval stone monuments of the 5th to 11th centuries from a variety of perspectives is due for publication in 2015. Edited by Howard Williams, Jo Kirton and Meggen Gondek, all from the University of Chester, Early Medieval Stone Monuments investigates stone monuments from Ireland, Britain and Scandinavia. Building on recent theoretical trends in archaeology and material culture studies in particular, it uses the themes of materiality, biography and landscape to reveal how carved stones created senses of identity and history for early medieval communities and kingdoms.
Prof Rosemary Cramp and Prof Jo Story, authors of the forthcoming East Midlands Volume, will be presenting on CASSS related research at The British Archaeological Association's 2015 annual conference at Peterborough on the 10th-14th July. The focus of the conference is architecture, art and archaeology throughout the Soke of Peterborough, especially that of Peterborough Cathedral and its precincts from the earliest period through the Middle Ages to the nineteenth century. Click here for more information.
We're delighted to share the news that the project continues to benefit from small grant funding from the British Academy. This funding enables authors to travel and study sculpture in situ. It facilitates the geological analyses and underpins the high quality production of images and maps which complement the scholarly volumes. The funding will also allow us to progress the online release of data, widening access and usage of this unique resource.
Together with Jo Storey from Leicester University, CASSS has won seedcorn funding from both Durham and Leicester Universities to pilot Structure from Motion (SfM) imaging techniques on key pieces of Anglo-Saxon stone sculpture. The recording and modelling is being pioneered by Professor Dominic Powlesland, Field Archaeologist in Residence at Cambridge University. The new 3-D imagery will be made available soon on this site.
We are sad to report that a finely decorated fragment of pre-Conquest sculpture has been reported missing from All Saints Church, Hovingham. This is an important piece from a very significant collection and should be returned to the church. We ask all those following the project to be especially aware in case this item appears for auction or sale. The theft has been reported to the police. If any news of its whereabouts emerges we would ask you to inform them and us as soon as possible.
Volume XI published! We're delighted to announce the publication earlier this year of The Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture, XI, Early Cornish Sculpture, authored by Ann Preston-Jones and Elisabeth Okasha.
Volume 11 surveys the county of Cornwall and provides an analytical catalogue of its early sculpture, highlighting the particular distinctiveness of Cornish sculpture compared to other regions. Introductory chapters set the material within its topographical, historical and archaeological context, considering it especially in relation to its development as Cornwall, at one time an independent Celtic kingdom, became part of the Anglo-Saxon realm. To fully illuminate the material, the volume includes specialist contributions on the geology of the monuments, the historical background, and the sculpture which continued the tradition of monumental carving in Cornwall after the Norman Conquest. There is a full photographic record of each monument, taken for the most part by the authors, which highlights the fact that Cornwall, unlike some regions, has many impressive and complete monuments still surviving.
Volumes can be purchased direct from the Oxford University Press.
It has been a matter of considerable concern in recent years that several items of Anglo-Saxon sculpture have appeared in the sale-rooms of auction houses, with on occasion items sold to anonymous bidders before any proper publication could be undertaken. It is therefore welcome that an Anglo-Saxon grave-marker, which apparently had been bought with a job lot of stone from Cheshire, was recently saved at auction through purchase by a public spirited private buyer from the UK , and will be published in due course. This is exceptionally good news and we would like to share it.
We are pleased to announce the online publication of the second volume of the Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture. This latest volume is authored by Professor Richard N. Bailey and Professor Rosemary J. Cramp and covers the pre-1974 counties of Cumberland, Westmoreland and Lancashire-North-of-the-Sands. The resource includes all catalogue entries, with images, and the full text of the 13 specialised chapters that were included in the original printed volume.
We have learned of a welcome extension of the publisher's discount for Volume X: West Midlands. The 40% discount continues to be available until 1st February 2013 from the Oxford University Press. Here is the link to the order form, which you should download, complete and rush to OUP before the deadline expires. Volume X providing even more value, for a limited period.
The release of the new website into the public domain in 2012 represents a significant advance for the project. The development of a searchable on-line catalogue was first achieved by the project as a result of AHRC funding and initially a searchable resource covering all data from Volumes I-III was made available. Loss of AHRC funding brought the development of the site to a halt in 2008. We are delighted to announce, however, the launch of a new website, made possible with funding from the British Academy, which makes available data from volume 1. In due course we hope to release the remaining data from volumes II-X. This is a work in progress and feedback and suggestions are welcome on the design and format of the site. We welcome your comments or suggestions.
Volume X of the Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Scultpure is now available with publisher's discount from the Oxford University Press. This volume surveys the western Midland counties of Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire. Introductory chapters set the material within an historical, topographical, and art-historical context, and there are specialist contributions concerning the geology of the monuments and the analysis of ninth-century paint. There is a full photographic record of each monument which includes many new illustrations. To receive the discount, which enables a full 40% reduction on the recommended price, please download this order form, complete, and send to the Oxford University Press.
Dr Derek Craig is working with volume author, Richard Bryant, to publish the tenth Corpus volume in 2012. This volume addresses the surviving Anglo-Saxon sculpture of the West Midlands. As well as a full catalogue of all surviving fragments art historical material, this volume includes will include specialist sections on the geology of the monuments and on an analysis of surviving ninth-century paint.
When published (forthcoming), this volume may be purchased from the Oxford University Press.