James Pantefedwyn Foundation

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Gwenffrewi Morgan

I am deeply grateful to the James Pantyfedwen Foundation for providing a grant towards my final-year MPhil fees at Jesus College, Oxford. This enabled me to focus on developing my dissertation on ‘Hagiographers and the Hills: Enviro-cultural History in South-West Britain’.

Through this work I developed a new approach to reading twelfth-century hagiography from South Wales and South West England that explored how the biographers of the Saints conceptualised their subjects as bound up in complex webs of agency involving the Saints, God (the Summus Creator, Supreme Creator), and their dependents through time. By reading these texts closely with regard to the Terrestrial world created by the hagiographers, I was also able to develop new insights into other areas of medieval Welsh and British History, for example placenames in these vitae.

In September 2023 I started a Scottish Graduate School of Arts and Humanities (SGSAH) PhD studentship at the University of St Andrews on how medieval authors thought about the environment in historical time in ‘Western Britain’, a synthetic region focused on Wales. This extends my masters work into a new set of sources, and will produce a Wales-centric analysis of the development of historicising environmental thought in Britain in the High-Middle Ages.