We are deeply sad to learn of the death of J N Adams. Jim’s huge contribution to the study of the Latin language of the ancient world, and especially its variation, revolutionised the field: his meticulous approach to vast amounts of previously neglected evidence was the foundation for publications that will continue to be referred to by scholars for generations. What may be less known is how he also contributed to the study of Latin in the medieval period.
Jim was chairman of the British Academy DMLBS committee for many years. This position was no honorary sinecure, and both the project and medievalists in general are deeply in his debt for his generous willingness to take on and be so committed to the role. As chairman he was indefatigable in his efforts to ensure the survival and completion of the project during a period when the challenges of sustaining a major long-term project financially were immense. He had become chairman at a time when the very future of the project looked more uncertain than it had for decades, and the fact that the project was not discontinued but set on a more secure footing and ultimately completed owes a great deal to him.
He was appointed CBE in 2015 for services to Latin scholarship, a richly deserved honour. He will be greatly missed.
Richard Sharpe, speaking at our Latin in Medieval Britain conference in 2013
We are immensely sad to learn of the death of Professor Richard Sharpe FBA. As a part of a distinguished career he was assistant editor of the DMLBS from 1981 to 1990. His contribution to the preparation of the Dictionary was huge. Scholars will be in his debt for many generations for the work he did preparing entries and improving the Dictionary’s bibliography. After leaving the DMLBS editorial team he remained a close advisor, supporter and friend to the project right up until its completion.
Elephant by Matthew Paris from Parker MS 16 f. 151v
Click on the image to link to a blog post by Richard Ashdowne and Carolinne White on the British Academy blog.
An advance copy of the long-awaited new three-volume printing of the DMLBS has arrived. Sets should be available for purchase from all good booksellers imminently.
Our thanks go to the publications team at the British Academy for all their work over many decades in seeing the project’s output into print and especially for dealing with all the challenges of this final stage.
There have been three reviews of Latin in Medieval Britain that have come out in the last few weeks.
In the TLS of 17 January there was a brief notice by Philip Hardie: https://www.the-tls.co.uk/articles/private/a-tale-of-two-loves-latin/
There is a fuller review by Ralph Hanna for The English Historical Review now available in advance of its print publication: https://academic.oup.com/ehr/advance-article-abstract/doi/10.1093/ehr/cey006/4825071
The third is by Tristan Franklinos for Classics For All: https://classicsforall.org.uk/book-reviews/latin-medieval-britain/
We would be very pleased to be informed of any others.