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Anu Lahtinen
Editor in Chief

INTRODUCTION

Dies Medievales 2004

Dies Medievales is a biannual conference of medievalists welcoming scholars, advanced students and interested public alike. In 2004, Dies Medievales was organised in Helsinki by Glossa - Society for Medieval Studies in Finland, Swedish Historical Society in Finland, the Finnish Historical Society, Centre for Nordic Studies and Renvall Institute for Area and Cultural Studies. The official part took place on 13th and 14th August.

The main theme of the conference was "Cultural and Economic Assimilation in Medieval Northern Europe," with sub-themes "Conquest, Colonisation and Christianity," "Hagiography and History," and "Urban Networks." These themes were discussed in key note lectures and in separate workshops. The conference programme included lectures by such distinguished scholars as Prof. Sverre Bagge from Bergen, Prof. Lars Boje Mortensen from Bergen, dr. Carsten Selch Jensen from Copenhagen, dr. Bo Franzén from Stockholm, dr. John Lind from SDU and dr. Hanno Brand from Groningen. Friday's program ended with Jarl Gallén lecture with the handing out of the first Jarl Gallén prize.


Cultural and Economic Assimilation

From the ninth and tenth centuries onward even the northernmost parts of Europe were slowly integrated in the common medieval cultural, social and economic system. This integration and assimilation took place in the form of the Christianity and with social structures and economic networks closely intertwined with it.

Hagiography and creation of written history for the newly christened peoples were essential mediums of these larger processes. Another both cultural and economic change was the development of urban centres and networks all around the Northern Europe. Especially radical change took place around the Baltic and Northern seas were the earlier urban centres were scarce.

The first theme, Conquest, Colonisation and Christianity, took a look on the vast change in different parts of northern European. The second theme, Hagiography and History, focused on specified literary and religious genre. The third theme, Urban Networks, turned to the rise of trade all around the northern medieval Europe. This publication is based on the themes and papers presented at the conference.

I would like to thank our conference guests and participants as well as Tuomas MS Lehtonen, the head of the organizing committee. I want to express my special gratitude to Janne Malkki, the conference coordinator, as well as Akseli Salmi and Marita von Weissenberg for their commitment in the process of editing the conference papers. Last but not least, I would like to thank our anonymous referees for their valuable work in commenting all papers.

 

Further information:

>> Glossa - Society for Medieval Studies in Finland,
>> Swedish Historical Society in Finland
>> Finnish Historical Society
>> Centre for Nordic Studies CENS
>> Renvall Institute for Area and Cultural Studies