Conference organisation

Conferences are a vital element of academic life. I have helped organize twenty-three conferences on medieval studies, English historical linguistics, Tolkien and scholarly correspondence. I am also the main organiser of the annual SOEMEHL: Symposium on Old English, Middle English and Historical Linguistics in the Low Countries at Leiden University.

For a full overview of organized conferences scroll down or click here.


Keynotes and invited lectures

I have given keynotes and invited lectures on medieval medicine, old age, Beowulf and J. R. R. Tolkien in Rome, Oxford, Udine, Eindhoven, Manchester and Antwerp.

Scroll down for an overview or click here.


Conference papers

I have presented my research on Old English, old age, medieval chronicles, medieval kingship, Beowulf and scholarly correspondence at conferences in Leeds, Leiden, Cork, Manchester, London, Utrecht, Granada and Brussels.

Scroll down for an overview or click here.


Student conferences

I have been a guest speaker at a number of student conferences and I have helped students organize their own conferences through the EOFORAS grant.

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Conference organisation


I have (co-)organised fifteen editions of three annually recurring conferences: 

  1. SOEMEHL: The Symposium on Old English, Middle English and Historical Linguistics in the Low Countries (2014 [with Rolf Bremmer (Leiden)]; 2015 [with Rolf Bremmer (Leiden)]; 2016; 2017; 2018; 2019; 2020; 2021)
  2. The Junius Symposium for Young Old Germanicists (with Peter Alexander Kerkhof [Ghent/Leiden]; 2015; 2016; 2018)
  3. De Oudgermanistendag (2018 [with Jodie Mann (Leiden)]; 2019 [with Robert Cloutier [Amsterdam); 2020; 2021). 

In addition, I have (co-)organized nine panels at the International Medieval Congress in Leeds: four on the life course in early medieval England (with Hattie Soper [Cambridge]; 2017; 2018); two on Old English after 1500 (with Rachel Fletcher [Glasgow]; 2019); two on early medieval English in the modern age (with Rachel Fletcher [Glasgow] and Oliver M. Traxel [Stavanger]; 2020) and one on the modern reception of early medieval English missionaries (2018).

Furthermore, I have (co-)organised eight stand-alone conferences:

  • 20th Biennial Conference of the International Society for the Study of Early Medieval England (ISSEME): “Contributions” (17-18;21-22 June, 2021)

Online international conference with the hosting shared by four universities (University of Winchester, Concordia University, Leiden University and Flinders University). I was one of the main organisers, with Lilla Kopár and Chelsea Shields-Más. Conference website.

  • 21st International Conference on English Historical Linguistics (ICEHL-21) (7-11 June, 2021)

Online conference on English Historical Linguistics with more than 150 participants. I was one of the main organisers. Conference website

  • The Life Course in Early Medieval England (23 March, 2019)

Stand-alone conference in Cambridge on the life course of people, things and texts in early medieval England. Keynote speaker: prof. Gale Owen-Crocker (University of Manchester). Organised with Hattie Soper (University of Cambridge). Conference website.

  • Unquendor Tolkien Seminar 2018: ‘The World Tolkien Built’ (12 May, 2018)

A seminar that brings together Tolkien researchers and enthusiasts to share new insights into Tolkien’s fiction and scholarship. Organised with Renée Vink (Dutch Tolkien Society Unquendor). Programme.

  • Scholarly Correspondence on Medieval Germanic Language and Literature (17 November, 2017)

An international symposium on scholarly correspondence at Leiden University. Part of the research project Pieter Jakob Cosijn’s Correspondence and Scholarly Collaboration at the End of the Nineteenth Century. Organised with Amos van Baalen and Jodie Mann (both Leiden University). Programme.

  • 7th Unquendor Lustrum Conference 2016: Tolkien among Scholars (18 June, 2016)

An international Tolkien conference, jointly organised by the Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society and the Dutch Tolkien Society Unquendor. Keynote speakers: prof.dr. Thomas M. Honegger (Friedrich Schiller University, Jena) and prof.dr. Paul J. Smith (Leiden University), Organised with Jan van Breda and Renée Vink (both Unquendor). Programme Booklet.

  • Anglo-Saxons and Anglo-Saxonists: Symposium in Honour of Rolf H. Bremmer Jr. (29 January, 2016)

An international symposium on the occasion of the retirement of Rolf H. Bremmer Jr. as Professor of English Philology at Leiden University. Keynote speaker: Tom Shippey (Saint Louis University). Organised with Luisella Caon and Erik Kwakkel (both Leiden University). Report. Programme.

  • LUCAS Graduate Conference 2015 ‘Breaking the Rules! Cultural Reflections on Political, Religious and Aesthetic Transgressions’ (29-30 January, 2015)

An international conference for PhD students in the humanities, from Leiden as well as other universities in the Netherlands and abroad. Keynote speakers: prof. Lorraine Daston (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin) and prof. Barbara H. Rosenwein (Loyola University Chicago). Organised with Wieneke Jansen, Nouzha Baba, Cui Chen and Katarzyna Durys (all Leiden University). Programme Booklet.


Keynotes and invited lectures


Conference keynotes

  1. ‘Boniface, Beowulf and Byrhtnoth: The Ideal of Active Ageing in Early Medieval England’, Ageing and Ageism in the Medieval West: The English, Scandinavian and German Contexts, University of Udine (18 November, 2021)
  2. ‘Seeing the Boarcrest through the Trees: J. R. R. Tolkien’s Translation and Edition of the Old English Exodus‘, NederMoot: Mythgard Netherlands Speculative Fiction Symposium, Signum University (13 April, 2019)
  3. Gerontophobia in Early Medieval England: Anglo-Saxon Reflections on Old Age’, MANCASS Easter Conference ‘The Anglo-Saxons at Home’, University of Manchester (4-5 April, 2018)
  4. ‘Medieval Medicine and the Human Life Cycle: Curing Old Age in Medieval England’, Annual Symposium of the Dutch Society of Human Genetics (NVHG), Eindhoven (21-22 September, 2017)
  5. ‘Medieval Medicine and the Human Life Cycle: Curing Old Age in Medieval England’, Science Days  Internal Medicine Erasmus MC 2017, Antwerp (12-13 January, 2017)

Invited lectures

  1. ‘Old Age and Kingship in Anglo-Saxon England: Beowulf as a Mirror for Elderly Kings’, Gerontology and the Humanities – Perspectives for Historical Ageing Studies and Approaches to Gerontological Medievistics, Deutsches Historisches Institut, Rome (4-6 November, 2019)
  2. Where the old man does not groan: Old Age in the Afterlife and Columbanus’s De mundi transitu in Anglo-Saxon England’, Medieval English Research Seminar, University of Oxford (22 May, 2019)

Conference papers


  1. ‘Meme-ing Old English Grammar’, Annual Meeting of TOEBI: Teachers of Old English in Britain and Ireland, online (14 November, 2020)
  2. By their words you shall know them: A Beowulf thesaurus and onomasiological profiling of Old English texts’, Exploring Early Medieval English Eloquence Workshop, online (17 October, 2020)
  3. ‘Playing Beowulf on the Continent: The Reception of Beowulf in the Low Countries (1850-1950)’, Annual Meeting of TOEBI: Teachers of Old English in Britain and Ireland, University of Manchester (16 November, 2019)
  4. ‘Old English Is Dutch and Beowulf Is Ours! Literary Appropriations of the Anglo-Saxons in the Nineteenth-century Netherlands’, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (1-4 July, 2019)
  5. ‘Exploring Anglo-Saxon Eloquence: A Researcher’s Perspective’, Exploring Anglo-Saxon Eloquence Workshop, Leiden University (1 February, 2019)
  6. ‘Learning Old English at your own pace and level with grammar videos and an adaptive learning module’, Best of both worlds: adding online experiences to on-campus education, Leiden University (31 January, 2019)
  7. ‘Willibrord’s Companions: Remembering and Inventing Anglo-Saxon Missionaries on the Continent’, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (2-5 July, 2018)
  8. ‘A New Approach to Navigating Extensible Digital Text Editions: The Leiden University Old English ColloQuest’, Digital Humanities Benelux (7 June, 2018). [with Amos van Baalen, Jennifer Jansen and Krista Murchison]
  9. ‘Reshaping the Germanic Economy of Honour: Gift Giving in The Lord of the Rings’, Unquendor Tolkien Seminar 2018: The World Tolkien Built, Leiden University (12 May, 2018)
  10. ‘Scholarly Correspondence on Medieval Germanic Language and Literature’, Scholarly Correspondence on Medieval Germanic Language and Literature, Leiden University (17 November, 2017)
  11. ‘The Leiden University Old English ColloQuest: A Digital Teaching Edition with Adaptive Glosses’, Annual Meeting of TOEBI: Teachers of Old English in Britain and Ireland, University College Cork (21 October, 2017) [with Krista Murchison]
  12. ‘Young Dancers, Old Spinsters: The Ages of Man and the Ages of Woman in Early Medieval England’, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (3-6 July, 2017)
  13. ‘Oudgermanistiek uit de archieven: De correspondentie van P.J. Cosijn (1840-1899) en een Oudengels gedicht van G.J.P.J. Bolland (1854-1922)’, Oudgermanistendag, Utrecht (20 May, 2017)
  14. ‘Will It Blend? Anglo-Saxons, Missionaries, Vikings and Cultural Blending in Early Medieval England’, Faculteitssymposium Humanities: You Might Be One of Us, Cultural Identity & Change, Leiden University (20-21 April, 2017) 
  15. blanded leornung: Digital Approaches to Teaching Old English’, Annual Meeting of TOEBI: Teachers of Old English in Britain and Ireland, King’s College London (22 October, 2016) [with Jodie Mann]
  16. ‘Of Old People and the Things that Pass: Motifs of Old Age in Old English Homilies’, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (4-8 July, 2016)
  17. ‘New roads and secret gates, waiting around the corner: Investigating Tolkien’s other Anglo-Saxon sources’, 7th Unquendor Lustrum Conference: Tolkien among Scholars, Leiden University (18 June, 2016)
  18. ‘Old but not Obsolete: Elderly Heroes and Saints in Anglo-Saxon England’, Anglo-Saxons and Anglo-Saxonists: Symposium in Honour of Rolf H. Bremmer Jr, Leiden University (29 January, 2016)
  19. ealde ethelweardas: Beowulf as a Mirror for Elderly Kings’, 27th International Conference of Spanish Society for Medieval English Language and Literature (SELIM), University of Granada (17-19 September, 2015)
  20. hare hilderincas: Old Warriors in Anglo-Saxon England’, MANCASS Easter Conference ‘Manhood in Anglo-Saxon England’, University of Manchester (7-9 April, 2015)
  21. eldo gebunden: Beowulf as a Mirror for Elderly Kings’, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (7-10 July, 2014)
  22. gomela iomeowlan: Old Women in Anglo-Saxon England’, MANCASS Easter Conference ‘Womanhood in Anglo-Saxon England’, University of Manchester (15-17 April, 2014)
  23. har hilderinc: The Old Warrior in Anglo-Saxon England’, Thirty-Fifth Symposium on Old English, Middle English and Historical Linguistics in the Low Countries, Leiden University (13 December, 2013)
  24. gomol on gehðo: No Joy for the Anglo-Saxon Elderly’, International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (1-4 July, 2013)
  25. ‘From Beowulf to Bilbo: Traces of Anglo-Saxon Culture in J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit’, Dragons & Swords: Fantasy Symposium, Utrecht University (27 March, 2013)
  26. Leeve mooder, leet me in — Attitudes towards Old Age and Death in Medieval English Literature’, LUCAS Graduate Conference 2013 ‘Death, the Cultural Meaning of the End of Life’, Leiden University (25 January, 2013)
  27. ‘Revaluing Ageing in Anglo-Saxon England: Was the early medieval period a golden age for the elderly?’, Second VALUE AGEING seminar ‘Law and Technology Perspectives on Intergenerational Justice’, Free University Brussels (12 October, 2012)
  28. atol yldo: Growing Old in Anglo-Saxon England’, MANCASS Post-Graduate Conference ‘Domesticity in the Anglo-Saxon World’, University of Manchester (5 March, 2012)
  29. ‘De Brederodekroniek’, Symposium Kastelenstichting Holland en Zeeland ‘Yolande van Lalaing’, Leiden University (27 February, 2010)
  30. ‘That Is No Country for Old Men: Anglo-Saxon Connotations of Old Age’, Thirty-First Symposium on Old English, Middle English and Historical Linguistics in the Low Countries, Leiden University, (18 December, 2009)

Student conferences


Lectures for student conferences

  1. ‘Unlikely Bedfellows? Saints and Swine in Medieval Hagiography’, for Holy Heroes: A Symposium on Saints’ Lives in Early Medieval England, graduate student symposium, Leiden University (03-06-2019)
  2. ‘Oudengels is Nederlands en de Beowulf is van ons! Ideeën over Oudengels in negentiende-eeuws Nederland’, for Germaanse Talen Symposium, organised by Albion Association, N.N.P. and S!MP (21-02-2019)
  3. ‘Ealde ethelweardas: Beowulf as a Mirror for Elderly Kings’, for Perspectives on Beowulf: Of Men, Monsters and Other Musings, graduate student symposium, Leiden University (25-01-2019)
  4. ‘”I fare as dooth an open-ers”: Provocation, proverbs and profanity in Chaucer’s Miller’s Tale and Reeve’s Tale’, for Chaucer Symposium, organised by M.S.V.L. Floris V and Albion Association, Leiden (14-06-2018)
  5. ‘Boared at King Arthur’s Court: The Ambivalent Boar in Arthurian Literature’, for The Knights of the Round Table and the Quest for Knowledge, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (01-06-2018)

Student conferences organised with the EOFORAS grant

  • From the Top of that Tower: A Tolkien Symposium, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (21 January, 2022) – poster
  • Herbs, Charms and Bodily Fluids: Magic and Medicine in Early Medieval England, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (22 January, 2021) – poster.
  • Tracing Tolkien: Exploring the Sources for Middle-earth, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (24 January, 2020) – poster.
  • Holy Heroes: A Symposium on Saints’ Lives in Early Medieval England, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (3 June, 2019) – poster.
  • Perspectives on Beowulf: Of Monsters, Men and Other Musings, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (25 January, 2019) – poster.
  • The Knights of the Round Table and the Quest for Knowledge, a graduate student conference at Leiden University, with a keynote lecture on the boar in Arthurian literature (1 June, 2018)
  • An Inkling of Middle-earth: Tolkien among Leiden Students, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (19 January, 2018)
  • Wisdom and Learning in Anglo-Saxon England, a graduate student conference at Leiden University (2 June, 2017)

More information about the EOFORAS grant here.