2009: some Medieval and Renaissance anniversaries

Welcome to the first Tangent du jour of 2009. The following major dates might be useful to anyone planning conferences or special publications this year … and to show off: look what an astounding time-period we cover in our field! With thanks to the wondrous Wikipedia (and as ever any errors are their responsibility; swings and roundabouts). Happy 2009.

MAJOR ANNIVERSARIES
(Clicking on links leads you to the pertinent Wikipedia page.)

500th anniversaries: 1509
holbeinerasmusfollymarginalia_detai1

[The Administratrix being unashamedly Europhilic, internationalist, and an ardent devotee of literatures imaginative, fantastic, and science-fictionesque – she will be celebrating the writing of The Praise of Folly, hence image  (Holbein, in 1st ed., 1515); a free online version of the John Wilson translation (1668) is at Project Gutenberg.]

750th anniversaries: 1259
hakon-flateyjarbok

[Death of Óláfr Þórðarson – Icelandic skald, nephew of Snorri Sturluson; notable Third Grammatical Treatise. Image above: his patron King Haakon IV of Norway; from the Flatey Book.]

1000th anniversaries: 1009
lietuvos_vardas_the_first_name_of_lithuania_in_writing_10091

[The first written occurrence of Lithuania’s name, in the Annals of Quedlinburg.]

1500th anniversaries: 509
geishaboy500

[Birth of the Emperor Kimmei: 29th Emperor of Japan, and the first to whose reign contemporary historiography assigns verifiable dates; start of the Asuka period; official introduction of Buddhism to the country (earlier recorded practice notwithstanding). Image above: replica of the Kudara Kanon, British Museum. Asuka period (ca. 552-ca. 650). Wood. Original may be from Korea or carved by immigrant Korean artisans.]

ALL ANNIVERSARIES FOR 2009
(As before, linking to Wikipedia.)

1709
1659
1609
1559
1509
1459
1409
1359
1309
1259
1209
1159
1109
1059
1009
959
909
859
809
759
709
659
609
559
509
459
409
359
309

Separated at birth, or plus ça change? I thought I should add the following, being a link between one of the 1500th anniversaries and one of the 500th; emphasizing some sense of continuity extending across our broad period and field. And drawing attention to one of the fundamental flaws of writing by typing on a keyboard: one can still scratch one’s head or stroke one’s beard, but how does one chew one’s writing instrument?

holbein-erasmus2[Erasmus at his desk; Holbein, in  Praise of Folly (1515)]

jiondaishi_boston1

[Portrait of Jion Daishi (632-82), Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Japanese, Kamakura period, 14th century. Panel; ink, color, and gold on silk. ]

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