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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

Beauty in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance Seminar Series - The Planning of Anglo-Norman Cathedral Cities

6th December 2011, 17:30 to 18:30, Room 142, Elvet Riverside Building, Dr Ulrich Fischer (Cologne Archive)

This is the fifth seminar in the IMRS Beauty in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance Seminar Series.

The University of Durham's Institute of Medieval and Renaissance Studies and Department of History are delighted to be hosting the fourth annual Wilhelm Levison Memorial Lecture.  

The lecture series was inaugurated in 2008 in order to celebrate the scholarly vision and achievements of Professor Levison, who fled Nazi Germany with his wife in 1939 to their adopted home of Durham, where he lived until his death in 1947. Each year a speaker is invited to build upon the foundations of cross-Channel cooperation and understanding in medieval history which Professor Levison did so much to establish.

Our invited speaker this year is Dr Ulrich Fischer of the Cologne Historic Archives, who will be talking on 'The Planning of Anglo-Norman Cathedral Cities'. It promises to be a most interesting paper, of particular relevance to Durham but also ranging much more widely.

After obtaining an MA in Medieval History at Durham University, Dr Ulrich Fischer returned to the University of Münster to undertake his PhD thesis and further research in that university's research group on medieval urban planning and development. Having written in Durham a dissertation on ceremonial ways through that city in the Norman period, his wider research focused on the full range of Norman cathedral cities in England, and resulted in the publication in 2009 of his Stadtgestalt im Zeichen der Eroberung: Englische Kathedralstädte in frühnormannischer Zeit (1066-1135). After his research at Münster, Dr Fischer became deputy director (Stellvetreter) of the Cologne City Archives, which post he was holding when the archive building collapsed in March 2009, taking with it one of the most important medieval archives in Europe. Dr Fischer has had a leading role in the efforts to rescue and restore the archive from this almost unthinkable disaster.

Contact for more information about this event.