Researcher database

With this network of researchers, we hope to make Syon a focus for bringing together scholars who might not otherwise know of each other’s work, or disciplinary approach (historians of medieval England and 19th-century Portugal, for instance, or archaeologists and liturgists).

To be added to our researcher database, please use the form on the contact page to get in touch with us. Please tell us about your work on Syon, and how it fits into your wider research interests. Please include some keywords to assist searches.

ContactAffiliation and locationGeneral research, and particular interest in Syon
Eddie JonesUniversity of ExeterI am a late medievalist with interests in English religious culture and book history, devotional and contemplative literature, and hermits and anchorites. I am the principal investigator for the AHRC-funded network ‘The English monastic experience, 15th - 21st centuries: Syon Abbey at 600’, of which this website is a part. A short and (I hope!) readable history of Syon should be out later this year with Gracewing, under the title England’s Last Medieval Monastery: Syon Abbey 1415-2015.
Keywords: Syon 1415-2015; Syon's medieval books; the Syon archive at Exeter.
Carmen MangionBirkbeck, University of LondonMy research into the cultural and social history of gender and religion in nineteenth and twentieth-century Britain is used to highlight wider themes of social identities; gendered spiritualities; transnational communities; religion and the medical marketplace. My current research focuses on Syon Abbey and other Catholic women's religious institutes. I am using oral history and archival research to consider the changing dimensions of Catholic women's religious life post 1940s.
keywords: Catholic women religious; social movements of the 1960s, Second Vatican Council
Laura Saetveit MilesUniversity of Bergen, NorwayAs a researcher of medieval religious culture, manuscript studies, and women's literary practices, I have long been interested in Syon Abbey and its texts. In graduate school I began an edition of Syon's Middle English legislative texts, and published on their critical history, including a new scribal attribution to librarian Thomas Betson. Currently, I am writing a book on the Virgin Mary and how the motif of her with a book at the Annunciation worked in medieval texts and images - see also my recent Speculum article, July 2014. In 2009 I founded the Syon Abbey Society in order to help connect researchers around the world who are working on different aspects of the house. We have a blog with relevant news and sponsor conference sessions at various academic conferences: see Email if you wish to be on our mailing list.
Keywords: women readers, manuscript studies, legislative texts, Syon's medieval books, Thomas Betson
Karin Strinnholm LagergrenKU Leuven (BE)/Linneaus University (SE)Research interests: PhD in musicology specialized in plainchant. In particular I research chant in medieval Scandinavia and the music of the Birgittine Order. I hold a postdoc position at the KU Leuven where I study the liturgical manuscripts from Mariënwater/Maria Refugie, a material covering 500 years. I also have a special interest in plainchant after the Middle Ages and my PhD thesis treated the use and function of Gregorian chant today in Catholic monasteries, among others Birgittines in Vadstena, Syon Abbey and Maria Refugie. I perform chant, among other Birgittine, with my ensemble Gemma.
Caroline BowdenQueen Mary University of LondonI have been working on the membership of the English convents in exile: between 2008-2013 on the AHRC-funded project Who Were the Nuns? at Queen Mary University of London. I am still based there and continuing to develop my interest in documents and books from the English convents. As well as acting as General Editor of six volumes of sources English Convents in Exile 1600-1800 between 2012 and 2013 by Pickering and Chatto, London, I also edited with James E Kelly The English Convents in Exile, 1600-1800: Communities, Culture and Identity, Ashgate, Farnham, 2013. Currently I am working on further documents including the Chronicle from the Bridgettine Convent at Lisbon to be published next year.
Virginia BainbridgeWiltshire and Swindon ArchivesI am a historian: my work explores religious and social change in the centuries of reform and reformation, c. 1350-1650. Syon Abbey is the focus of my research because its story crosses the divide between the Medieval and Early Modern worlds. I am studying the lives of the sisters and brothers. Collectively they influenced and experienced the religious upheavals of their time. I find the strength of their vocations, through all the difficulties and dangers they faced, personally inspiring. I have published several articles on the history of Syon Abbey, while working full-time on major research projects: the Victoria County History, and currently the Manorial Documents Register. I am working on more publications and I will be presenting my research at Syon at 600 events.