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The University of Southampton
Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Culture

'Fighting Talk: Exhortation in War in Late Medieval Scotland' Seminar

14 March 2016
Building 65 Room 1173 Avenue Campus University of Southampton Faculty of Humanities SO17 1BF

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Chloe McKenzie at .

Event details

Part of the CMRC seminar series 2015/2016 All Welcome!

This paper explores the neglected topic of battle speech in late medieval Scotland. Formal orations are considered, but also a variety other types of talk in the war zone (conversations, commands, exhortations) as reported in contemporary sources. The ubiquitous accompaniment to military encounters, the battle-cry, is also considered. It is hoped that insights can be developed about the way war was presented and understood and, more tentatively, that the actual martial values and behaviour of Scottish soldiers can be illuminated. A suitable scepticism is maintained about what can be read into the predominantly literary sources that purport to depict the words spoken before, during and after battle. Nonetheless, this paper seeks to suggest that certain particularities can be observed in Scottish battle speech that hint at wider insights into senses of identity and self-perception.

Speaker information

Dr Alastair Macdonald , University of Aberdeen. Lecturer

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