Speaker: Sally Dormer
5 April 2022

In 2003 a previously unknown illuminated medieval Psalter was discovered at Shirburn Castle, in Oxforshire. Subsequently sold by the Earl of Macclesfield, the Macclesfield Psalter, as it became known, now lives in the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, thanks to the generosity of the Art Fund and others. The book’s vibrant, occasionally ribald, illustrations, and carefully copied texts shed light onto the patterns of the devotion, humour, aesthetic taste and everyday concerns of the wealthy 14th century Englishman who commissioned and used this endlessly fascinating book. The lecture will explore the Macclesfield Psalter in detail, as well as setting the book into a broader context. 

Sally is a lecturer and tutor for the Early Medieval Year Course at the V&A and Dean of European Studies for two American universities. She is also a freelance lecturer for The Art Fund. She studied at the Courtauld Institute and has an MA in Medieval History of Art and a PhD in Medieval Manuscript illuminations.