A week has now passed since Carolinne, Kathrin and I returned from a brilliantly well organized conference at the Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften in Munich hosted by the team of the Mittellateinisches Wörterbuch. This gathering, which brought together members of the teams from our sister medieval Latin dictionary projects around Europe (including Ireland, France, Poland, the Czech Republic, Sweden, in addition to ourselves and our hosts) as well as others with interests in medieval Latin, was attended by more than 60 scholars in all. The range of papers on the theme of ‘technical language’ was impressive, and many will appear in a volume of proceedings to be published in ALMA. It would be invidious to single out particular highlights, but papers covered fields as diverse as medicine, law, architecture, music, hunting, and astronomy, and examined Latin from across Europe from the whole medieval period.
As well as the thematic papers, there was a round-table discussion by the project teams about their work which began with presentations from each about their progress in the last two years. It was a pleasure for me on behalf of the DMLBS project to be able to present the publication not only of three fascicules of the dictionary (PRO to SOL) but also to set out briefly the work already done in terms of digitization plans and our plans for completing the printed dictionary by the end of 2013. We were also able to advertise our own conference planned for next year, which we hope many of our colleagues will be able to attend.
Supplementing the formal proceedings, our hosts provided numerous opportunities for meeting other participants while sampling some of the delights of Munich and the surrounding Bavarian countryside, and it was good to get to know some of our fellow lexicographers from around Europe. One highlight was the excursion on Saturday afternoon which culminated in a guided visit to the renowned church of St Jacob in Urschalling, famed for its splendid frescoes (whence the picture above), and the neighbouring ‘beer garden’.
Our thanks go to our hosts in Munich for their warm welcome and splendid hospitality and in particular to the chief organizers, Helena Leithe-Jasper and Marie-Luise Weber.