Professor Aengus Ward Inaugural Lecture

Wednesday 15 March 2023 (18:00-19:00)

Please note this event has been postponed. We will update this webpage as soon as a new date has been arranged.

“Intellectum tibi dabo” – maybe: Knowledge and understanding in the medieval and digital worlds

Medieval manuscript culture may once have been considered an impediment to meaning. Textual scholars sought to clear away the material element and present their understanding in printed editions. And while philological method always recognised the variable nature of manuscript culture, the possibility of accounting for it in editions was necessarily limited. Two major intellectual and technological developments in the last 40 years have revolutionised the field. But the rapid advance of digital editing in practice has not necessarily been accompanied by a reflection on the theoretical implications of our digital world.

In this lecture, I will outline some of these developments and address provisionally the following questions: Does the epistemological underpinning of digital works and representations differ from that of physical, printed works? If so, how? Can the nature of manuscript culture tell us something about our own epistemically uncertain times? And does this mean that the very object of study in the digital age is qualitatively different?  

This is a lecture open to all - staff, students, and members of the public.


Professor Aengus Ward has been a lecturer in the Department of Modern Languages (Hispanic Studies) since 1994. He teaches medieval Spanish literature and Spanish language and linguistics. His research interests lie in the fields of medieval Spanish history and historiography, textual editing, diachronic phonology and syntax.

His research project the Estoria de Espanna Digital ( is the first major digital edition of a sustained text in medieval Spanish prose. To coincide with the launch of the edition he collaborated with the Biblioteca Nacional de España and other archives in a series of physical and digital exhibitions.