Events & News
Medieval Intellectual History in the Digital Age
Medieval Intellectual History in the Digital Age
Date: Wednesday, February 15, 2023
Time: 03:30 PM
Location: SJ2/Academic Centre - Room 1002

St. Jerome's University's DRAGEN Lab is pleased to partner with the University of Waterloo (UW) to support the next lecture in the 2023 Medieval Lecture Series. Professor Chris L. Nighman, from Wilfred Laurier University, will be speaking on February 15, 2023 about "Medieval Intellectual History in the Digital Age: Mapping the Medieval Mentalité Through the Janus Intertextuality Search Engine". Everyone is welcome to participate in this lecture taking place on the St. Jerome's University campus in the SJ2/Academic Centre building, Room 1002, from 3:30 p.m.-5:00 p.m.



While developing an online critical edition of Thomas of Ireland’s Manipulus florum (2013), an influential collection of authoritative Latin proverbs and textual excerpts, Nighman collaborated with two UW computer scientists who developed the Janus Intertextuality Search Engine, an innovative research tool that enables scholars to compare a long Latin text to the entire edition of Manipulus in a single search query.


In 2015, they added his edition of another influential medieval Latin florilegium, Liber pharetrae, to the Janus database, and then generated an intertextuality report identifying all quotations shared by these two florilegia, which are surely independent of one another.


They are currently adding to the Janus database a third influential and independent florilegium, Viridarium consolationis, creating a resource that has the potential to revolutionize our understanding of scholastic intellectual history. In a few years Nighman will add Geremia da Montagnone’s proto-humanist Compendium moralium notabilium (c.1310), which should greatly further their understanding of intellectual continuity and discontinuity from medieval scholasticism to renaissance humanism.


Professor Chris Nighman, Wilfrid Laurier University
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Chris Nighman received his PhD in History (1996) and MA in History (1990) from the University of Toronto, where he also held a graduate fellowship (1994-96) and a post-graduate fellowship (1996-99) at the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies. His undergraduate degree is a dual BA in History and Medieval Studies from the University of California at Santa Barbara (1988).


Nighman's research field is late medieval and early renaissance intellectual and ecclesiastical history, focusing on Latin florilegia (collections of quotations); early Italian humanism; Latin translations of Greek patristic texts; conciliar sermons (especially eulogies); and ecclesiastical politics; rhetorical theory; and practice as it relates to the construction of self and delimitation of audience, pastoral reform in response to heresy, scribal agency in manuscript traditions and editorial agency in early print traditions. He is also involved in the growing field known as digital humanities, especially the publication of Open Access critical editions of historical texts.


Medieval Lecture Series poster
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