Dr Victoria Flood BA (Cantab) MPhil (Cantab) PhD (York)

Department of English Literature
Lecturer in Medieval and Early Modern Literature

Contact details

University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

My research focuses on the relationship between text, territory, and regional and national political identities, and I am currently working on a project on the transmission of fairy narratives between England, Wales and continental Europe, c. 1180-1400, with a particular focus on treatments of the phantom or spectral body. 


  • BA in English Literature, University of Cambridge
  • MPhil in Medieval and Renaissance Literature, University of Cambridge
  • PhD in Medieval Studies, University of York


I joined the English Department in September 2016, following an Early Career Leverhulme award held at Durham University (transferred to Birmingham for 2016-17), and an Alexander von Humboldt postdoctoral fellowship in the department of Celtic Studies at Philipps-Universität Marburg (2014-15).

My doctorate was undertaken at the Centre for Medieval Studies, at the University of York (completed in 2013). This followed an MPhil in Medieval Literature, and a BA in English, from the University of Cambridge.


  • Popular Fiction before the Novel (UG)
  • Mapping the Middle Ages: Cultural Encounters in the Medieval East and West (UG & PGT)
  • Magic, Monsters and Marvels in the Medieval World (PGT)
  • Meeting Medieval Manuscripts (PGT)
  • Understanding Medieval Literature (PGT)
  • Medieval Studies MA: Skills and Approaches (PGT)

Postgraduate supervision

I am delighted to supervise postgraduate work in the field of border studies; Arthurian literature; romance; cross-border literary transmission; prophecy; the supernatural; cultural encounters; national identity; medieval bodies.

Find out more - our PhD English Literature  page has information about doctoral research at the University of Birmingham.


I have published on English political literature, prophecy, and poetry, Arthurian literature, and manuscript studies, with a particular focus on comparative perspectives; and have produced a number of articles and book chapters relating to the translation of late medieval and early Tudor prophecy between English and Welsh, and the broader European context of political prophecies in circulation in medieval Britain. My first monograph, Prophecy, Politics, and Place in Medieval England: from Geoffrey of Monmouth to Thomas of Erceldoune (D. S. Brewer, 2016), charts the development of a dominant secular tradition of political prophecy in medieval England, beginning with Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Prophetiae Merlini, considering the formative role of Welsh and Scottish literary influences.

I am currently working on my second monograph, early research for which was funded by the Leverhulme Trust. This considers the movement and geo-political localisation of narratives of the female fairy or phantom in Arthurian and related literature, produced in Britain and France, c. 1180-1400. The book is intended to offer a new direction for our understanding of the evolution of certain aspects of the Matter of Britain, suggesting a zone of common literary exchange and functional multilingualism spanning northern France, England and Wales.

Other activities

I am co-Principal Investigator of a research network supported by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation: Crossing Borders in the Insular Middle Ages. The network brings together scholars from across Europe, tracing the transmission and translation of literary texts across Britain, Ireland, and Iceland, during the period 1250-1550. The focus of the network is a pilot for a digital database of transmitted and translated medieval texts (launching September 2018). The digital aspect of the project is in association with Culture Lab, Newcastle University. You can follow the project on twitter @insularworld..

I am also co-convener of the Crossing Borders in the Insular Middle Ages (900-1550) conference series, which began at Philipps-Universität Marburg in 2015. The conference runs biennially, and the next conference is scheduled for 2019.

I am currently Head of Postgraduate Research for the School of English, Drama & American and Canadian Studies



  • 2019. Crossing Borders in the Insular Middle Ages. Medieval Texts and Cultures of Northern Europe 38. Ed. with Aisling Byrne (Turnhout: Brepols)
  • 2016. Prophecy, Politics and Place in Medieval England: from Geoffrey of Monmouth to Thomas of Erceldoune (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer)

Journal articles

  • 2018. 'Prophecy as history: a new study of the Prophecies of Merlin Silvester', Neophilologus 102.4, pp. 543-59
  • 2016. 'Political Prophecy and the Trial of Rhys ap Gruffydd, 1530–31'. Studia Celtica 50 (2016): 133–150
  • 2015. 'Arthur’s return from Avalon: Geoffrey of Monmouth and the Development of the Legend'. Arthuriana 25.2, 84-110
  • 2015. 'Wynnere and Wastoure and the Influence of Political Prophecy'. Chaucer Review 49.4, 227–48
  • 2015. 'The Romance of the Stanleys: Regional and National Imaginings in the Percy Folio'. Viator 46.1, 327–52. Co-authored with Aisling Byrne
  • 2015. 'An English Owain Prophecy: A New Diplomatic Transcription and Analysis of a Prophecy in All Souls College, Oxford, MS 33'. Journal of the Early Book Society 17, 283–92
  • 2014. 'Henry Tudor and English Prophecy in Wales'. Proceedings of the Harvard Celtic Colloquium 34, 67-86
  • 2013. 'Political Prodigies in the Writings of Walter Map and Gerald of Wales'. Nottingham Medieval Studies 57, 14–30

Book chapters

  • 2020. 'Other Vernaculars'. The Oxford Handbook of English Poetryed. Helen Cooper and Robert Roy Edwards (Oxford University Press; forthcoming)
  • 2019.  'Insular Connections and Comparisons in the Later Middle Ages'. Crossing Borders in the Insular Middle Ages, ed. Flood and Byrne (Turnhout: Brepols), pp. 1-22. Co-authored with Aisling Byrne.
  • 2019. 'The Prophetic Eagle in Italy, England and Wales: Dante, Chaucer and Insular Political Prophecy.' Chaucer and the Italian Renaissance, ed. Helen Fulton (New Century Chaucer, University of Wales Press; forthcoming)
  • 2019. 'Early Tudor Translations of English Prophecy in Wales'. Crossing Borders in the Insular Middle Ages, ed. Flood and Byrne (Turnhout: Brepols), pp. 65-88
  • 2018. 'Political Joachism and the English Franciscans: The Rumour of Richard II’s Return'.  Anglo-Italian Cultural Relations in the Later Middle Ages, ed. Helen Fulton and Michaele Campopiano (York Medieval Press), pp. 128-49

Encyclopaedia entries

  • 2017. Rhydderch Hael. In: Encyclopedia of Medieval British Literature, ed. Robert Rouse and Sian Echard (Wiley Blackwell)
  • 2017. St Kentigern. In: Encyclopedia of Medieval British Literature 

View all publications in research portal