English words, English music: A E Housman and George Butterworth

Peter Parker, biographer, historian and author of Housman Country (2016)
6 June 2017, 1-1.45pm
Lecture Theatre, Weston Library
Admission free

The names of A E Housman and George Butterworth are strongly linked in the English imagination. Although the two men never met, Butterworth's personal identification with Housman's 1896 volume of poems A Shropshire Lad resulted in his best-known compositions. Peter Parker explores the characters of both Housman and Butterworth, and the perceived 'Englishness' of their poems and music. And, as the centenary of the First World War is being marked, he explains how these two men unwittingly became elegists for the generation of 1914.

Civil War and Restoration London lives: three new manuscript sources in the Bodleian

Mike Webb, Bodleian Libraries
2 May 2017, 1-1.45pm
Lecture Theatre, Weston Library
Admission free

Mary Gofton's 1640s account book charts the pleasures and tribulations of a woman in Civil War London. Robert Robinson's 'Miscellany of meditations' of 1659 represents the reflections of a thinking man in his sixties who had lived through the Civil War and Commonwealth era; Jeffrey Boys's diary, kept in a small printed almanac in 1667, reveals the life of a Restoration rake who gambles and dances his way through post-Fire London. Among his dancing partners is one 'Astrea', who is none other than the female dramatist, Aphra Behn. Three very different sources, all with surprising secrets.

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