Posted on 14 January 2011 by Keith D Lilley
Just before the country descended into transport chaos following the heavy snowfalls in late December, the "Linguistic Geographies" project team met up in Oxford to discuss our work and findings so far, this time with our two project advisors, Jeremy Smith and Peter Barber. Jeremy is professor of English philology at the University of Glasgow, and Peter is the curator of the British Library's map collection, so both are very well-placed to comment on the project's methods and its development since we started work in the Spring. Meeting in the basement of the Bodleian Library's Clarendon Building, a lively discussion took place between us all, particularly when it came to interpreting the writing on the map. Elizabeth has pushed forward on the palaeographical study of the manuscript, and through a systematic coverage of the map's text she is able to now provide us with a much better understanding of the different hands as represented by the scribes' work - watch this space for further news on this! With Jeremy's involvement with the lingustic atlas of Early Middle English there was also much to discuss on the map's linguistic evidence, hitherto unstudied. Also, Peter's recent study of the 'Gough-derived' Anglia Figura map (in the British Library) helped in our discussion of the Gough Map as an artefact, especially on the issue of the map's provenance and later circulation. So all in all a very productive meeting was had, and we would like to thank our advisors for their time and valued input at this important midway point for us. We are pleased too to be able to report that both Jeremy and Peter will be giving keynote lectures at our forthcoming colloquium, "The Language of Maps", to be held at the Bodleian Library between June 23-25 2011 - further details are to be found on our web-site.