Loew Lectures

Loew Lectures

Spring 2015 Cornelius Loew Lecture in Medieval Studies

Sponsored by the Medieval Institute
Co-sponsored by the Friends of the University Libraries, Western Michigan University, and the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center

Image of Getty Museum manuscript Ludwig XIV 2.Illuminare: The Uses and Embellishment of Gold and Other Metallic Leaf and Inks in Medieval and Renaissance Manuscript Painting

Nancy Turner

Conservator of Manuscripts, J. Paul Getty Museum

Thursday, March 19, 2015
5:15 p.m.
1010 Fetzer Center (external link)

reception to follow

Nancy Turner is the Conservator of Manuscripts in the Department of Paper Conservation at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Ms. Turner is one of country’s leading conservators of medieval codices, having worked on and with the Getty Museum’s collection of manuscripts almost since its foundation in 1983. She is an expert on medieval and early modern pigments, with a rich knowledge of the materials in surviving manuscripts and also of the written sources (largely recipe books) related to the acquisition of coloring agents and the manufacture of paints in the Middle Ages and the early modern period. Her publications include numerous technical studies and reports on conservation treatments and techniques, and she has made a significant contribution to the scholarly literature, especially on medieval manuscript painting techniques.

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Cornelius Loew Lectures in Medieval Studies

Portrait of Cornelius LoewThe Cornelius Loew Lectures in Medieval Studies were established by the Board of the Medieval Institute in April of 1986 to honor a distinguished colleague on his retirement after thirty years of service to Western Michigan University.

During those years "Cornie," as he was known to his friends, served as founding Chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religion (1958-64), as Associate Dean then Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences (1964-68, 1968-77), and as Vice-President for Academic Affairs (1977-79). He returned to the faculty as a Distinguished University Professor in 1980 and taught until his retirement in 1986. He passed away on 24 October 1998 at the age of 82.

Offices and dates do not reveal the crucial role Cornie played during his career in the promotion and support of early studies on the campus of Western Michigan University. He was present at the creation of both the Medieval Institute and the Institute of Cistercian Studies. He was a strong supporter of what has become the International Congress on Medieval Studies, and his efforts as Dean and as Vice-President for Academic Affairs enabled Medieval Institute Publications to develop into the vital enterprise it has become.

Image of Jessica Brantley delivering the spring 2012 Loew Lecture at the Kalamazoo Institute of ArtsIt is safe to say that were it not for Cornelius Loew's wisdom and counsel at crucial stages in its growth Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University would not have become the vital and distinguished academic enterprise that it is. His commitment was unflagging. His enthusiasm was infectious. His guidance was firm, and generous, and kind. For all his services we thank him, and we remember him by continuing this series of lectures in his name.


Past Loew Lectures

(in reverse chronological order)

Religious Education and Collaboration at the Beguinage of Paris

Tanya Stabler Miller, Purdue Univ., Calumet
Nov. 6, 2014
in connection with Medieval 5300, Introduction to Medieval Studies, taught by James M. Murray

Translating Galbert of Bruges

Jeff Rider, Wesleyan Univ.
October 10, 2013
in connection with Medieval 5300, Introduction to Medieval Studies, taught by James M. Murray

Medieval Authors and Their Signatures: Toward a History of the Authorial Colophon

Daniel Hobbins, Univ. of Notre Dame
November 1, 2012
in connection with Medieval 5300, Introduction to Medieval Studies, taught by James M. Murray

Art and Devotion: Looking at the Word More (external link)

Jessica Brantley, Yale Univ.
March 15, 2012
in connection with Medieval 6000, Art and Devotion in Medieval England, taught by E. C. Teviotdale

Dominican Teaching in Dante's Florence: Fra Remigio de' Girolami and the Schools of Santa Maria Novella

M. Michèle Mulchahey, Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies
April 12, 2011
in connection with History 6820, Mendicants and Their World, taught by Larry Simon

Twist and Shout: Riddles of Monstrosity in Anglo-Saxon England

Andy Orchard, Trinity College, Univ. of Toronto
March 16, 2009
in connection with English 6100, Monstrosity in Anglo-Saxon Literature, taught by Jana Schulman

The Pseudo-Peter of Poitiers Gloss and Early Scholastic Theology

Marcia L. Colish, Yale Univ.
October 24, 2008
in connection with Medieval 6000, Introduction to Medieval Studies, taught by James M. Murray

Sinners, the Moral Body, and the Motif That Dare Not Speak Its Name

Martha Bayless, Univ. of Oregon
March 19, 2008
in connection with English 5550, Chaucer, taught by Eve Salisbury

From Bride of Christ to Devil's Concubine: The Sponsa Christi and Her Fall into the Body

Dyan Elliott, Vanderbilt Univ.
April 5, 2006
in connection with Comparative Religion 5000, Historical Studies, taught by Kevin Wanner

The Theme of Creation in the Commedia

Piero Boitani, Univ. di Roma "La Sapienza"
November 17, 2005
in connection with English 5550, Dante, taught by Eve Salisbury

Food for the Gods in Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages

Danuta Shanzer, Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
April 7, 2005
in connection with Latin 560, Medieval Latin, taught by David Kutzko

The Bigger the Book: The Archeology of the Oversize Manuscript

George D. Greenia, College of William & Mary
October 12, 2004
in connection with Spanish 660, History of the Spanish Language, taught by Pablo Pastrana-Pérez

The Mythological Paradigm and the Opening of Plato's Phaedrus

Francis Newton, Duke Univ.
March 10, 2004
in connection with Medieval 600, Codicology and Latin Paleography, taught by E. C. Teviotdale

How Scaldic Verse Works: The Case of the Extended Metaphor

Roberta Frank, Yale Univ.
November 13, 2003
in connection with English 597, Old Norse, taught by Jana Schulman

New Wine in an Old Bottle: Reconceptualizing the Medieval Aristocratic Family

Amy Livingstone, Wittenberg Univ.
March 12, 2003
in connection with History 612, Medieval France, taught by Robert Berkhofer

North and South in the Medieval Mediterranean: The View from the South

Abraham L. Udovitch, Princeton Univ.
November 21, 2002
in connection with History 550, Medieval Islam, taught by Adam Sabra

Which Rome, Which Jerusalem? Apocalyptic Prophecy and Ottoman Imperialism in the Mediterranean, 1453-1550

Cornell Fleischer, Univ. of Chicago
March 28, 2002
in connection with Religion 500: Shi'a Islam, taught by David Ede

Why Do We Have Alcuin's Letters Anyway?

Donald A. Bullough, Univ. of St. Andrews
November 12, 2001

The Lovesick Deacon and the Crucified Peasant: Two Cases of Medieval Popular Religion

John Shinners, St. Mary's College
March 19, 2001
in connection with Religion 500, Christian Theology to 1500, taught by Jaclyn Maxwell

Piers Plowman and Urban Culture in Medieval England

Andrew Galloway, Cornell Univ.
November 16, 2000
in connection with English 530, Medieval Literature, taught by Eve Salisbury

The Medieval and Renaissance Origins of Civility

Edward Muir, Northwestern Univ.
April 4, 2000
in connection with History 550, Studies in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe, taught by James Palmitessa

Required Opposites: Women and Men in Twelfth Century Thought

Constance Bouchard, Univ. of Akron
November 8, 1999
in connection with History 612, Medieval France: 10th-12th Centuries, taught by George Beech

The Mint of Venice in the Middle Ages

Alan Stahl, American Numismatic Society
April 13, 1999
in connection with History 550, Medieval Archaeology, taught by Deborah Deliyannis

Dante, Francis, and the Circle of the Sun

William Cook and Ronald Herzman, State Univ. of New York College at Geneseo
November 11, 1998
in connection with English 555, Dante, taught by Thomas Seiler

Confessions of a Committed Translator: The Lost Literature of the Middle Ages

David Staines, Univ. of Ottawa
March 19, 1998
in connection with Medieval 600, Chrétien de Troyes, taught by Molly Lynde-Recchia

On the Road: The Pilgrimage to Compostela

Linda Davidson, Univ. of Rhode Island
November 6, 1997
in connection with Spanish 600, Don Quixote, taught by Robert Felkel

The Medieval Author and His Works

Richard Sharpe, Univ. of Oxford
March 25, 1997
in connection with Medieval 560, Medieval Latin, taught by Timothy Graham

Gerard Horenbout and Associates: Illuminating Activities in Ghent, 1480-1521

Robert Calkins, Cornell Univ.
November 13, 1996
in connection with Medieval 600, Medieval Manuscript Painting, taught by Joyce Kubiski

Augustine in Cyberspace: Confessions of a Global Schoolmaster

James J. O'Donnell, Univ. of Pennsylvania
March 18, 1996
in connection with Latin 560, Medieval Latin, taught by Rand Johnson

Begin the Beguin: Medieval Heresy and its Significance

Robert E. Lerner, Northwestern Univ.
November 6, 1995
in connection with History 620, Heresy and Dissent in Early Modern Europe, taught by Larry Simon


  • Los Angeles, J. Paul Getty Museum, MS Ludwig XIV 2, fol. 63r (detail)
  • Portrait of Cornelius Loew
  • Jessica Brantley delivering the spring 2012 Loew Lecture at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts (photo: Richard Utz)

The Medieval Institute
Western Michigan University
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