Update – Anglo-Saxon charters – Chertsey

I made reference in my first post on charters to Susan Kelly’s “forthcoming” Charters of Chertsey Abbey, which has got to the stage of draft copies being circulated for comment (although I have not been lucky enough to see one yet) but is in all likelihood still several years away from publication. By happy accident the other day I came across an untitled essay/dissertation comparing certain charters in the Chertsey cartulary to those in its Winchester equivalent, the Codex Wintoniensis, from a highly-informed linguistic perspective akin to Kelly’s published work on other archives but far beyond the capabilities of mere mortals like me. As such, it is a most useful addition to the currently-available body of work on Chertsey and its muniments, moreover one which takes a surprisingly positive view of the authenticity of a number of documents previous scholarship had dismissed as forgeries. The only problem is I don’t know the name of its author. It is available for download via a Geocities site (how rubbish did the internet used to look?!) under the username katemondizzard so I presume we have someone named Kate to thanks for it, but beyond that I’m stumped. I thought that Geocities no longer existed, so the fact that it’s still available is a stroke of luck, but just in case it does become extinct I’ve posted a copy here:

The Language of Chertsey & Winchester Charters by katemondizzard

As is to be expected of any extended essay there are a few minor errors (placing Farnham in Hampshire, for instance), but overall it is a work that does not deserve to languish in obscurity. Its focus on the language of the charter bounds contained in a number of the charters is particularly interesting, not least in advancing a credible contextual explanation of the three boundary clauses appended to the original late seventh-century text of S 1165. There’s also a separate page with transcriptions of all the texts appraised in the essay, including the boundary clauses for Farnham (S 382) and Crondall (S 820) which have not as yet been added to LangScape (although it does not include the glosses and other features that make the latter such a great site). All in all, the research is of such a high standard that it makes you wonder what became of the author and whether she has more work out published or otherwise available online. ***UPDATE JUNE 2013: I’m stumped no longer! Seems like we have Kate Wiles, a current PhD student at my alma mater of Leeds, to thank for the dissertation – see here for more information on her doctoral research.***

(While I remember, there are excellent – but again anonymously-authored – pages on charters and bounds on the Chobham village website which offer topographical and toponymic explanations of the bounds in S 1165 and later, post-Conquest estate perambulations from Chertsey Abbey and parish records.)

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