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Durham University

Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (IMEMS)

Staff and Governance

Core Staff

The day-to-day running of IMEMS is the responsibility of the Core Executive Committee, comprising the Director and Associate Directors and the Administrator. 

Publication details

Archibald, Elizabeth (2014). Love and Marriage in the Breton Lays. Études Épistémè (25).

Author(s) from Durham


Love is usually said to be the central concern of the Middle English Breton lays, as of the French ones. But in fact the English poems pay relatively little attention to romantic love, and are more concerned with identity, family separation and reunion, loyalty and justice. In the French lays, as in French romances, adultery is often accepted, and the happiness of the malmariée put before moral considerations. It is often argued that the English in the Middle Ages were not keen on stories of adultery. There are some striking exceptions – for instance Malory’s focus on Lancelot and Guinevere – but it is certainly not a common theme in the English lays, though it is notable that the two lays by Marie which survive in English versions are both about extra-marital love affairs.

Full Executive Committee

Our Full Executive Committee is made up of the Core Executive Committee, listed above, plus a number of executive members including:

International Advisory Board

We are extremely fortunate to have be able to call on the help and guidance of colleagues from around the world who help to shape and guide our direction, strategy and international reach. Our current Advisory Board members are: