Home home Programme Bookings Shop The Wuffings .
Wuffing Education

Celtic Art and the Anglo-Saxons: from the Iron Age to the Insular style.

One of the enamelled escutcheons from the great hanging bowl from Sutton Hoo (©Trustees of the British Museum)

with Dr Susan Youngs (former Curator, British Museum)

at the Old Court, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday, 28th September 2013.

Celtic Art and the Anglo-Saxons: from the Iron Age to the Insular style.

Provisional Programme
(There may be variations to the programme on the day)
  10.00 Coffee on arrival  
  10.15 ‘What is Celtic Art?’ The Iron Age inheritance in Britain and modern labels for peoples, styles, places and periods. British art after Empire, a renaissance of Iron Age culture, or traditions sustained by the former citizens of Rome? When settlement is elusive, working from a curious mix of evidence, names and bowls, brooches and buckles, what we can deduce about relations between the British and the Anglo-Saxons, with an eye on East Anglia.  
  11.15 Coffee  
  11.45 ‘Who made the Sutton Hoo hanging bowls?’ Finding the natives in the evidence from Sutton Hoo and Prittlewell. After Rome was it exile, death, war, or assimilation, or even converting the neighbours: the evidence from fine metalwork.  
  12.45 Lunch break  
  14:00 ‘Celtic art of the manuscript came from Ireland’ Is this the full picture and why should this have influenced the Anglo-Saxons? Rome, Britain and the conversion of Ireland to Christianity involved an exchange of people, ideas and styles, with Irish missions to the Anglo-Saxons. The new religion and the new political order looked west as well as east to Rome. Why conversion to the new religion made such a difference to Anglo-Saxon art, but the new look did not find favour with all.  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 ‘Hidden delights’ The monastic scriptoria of Britain and Ireland reached unparalleled heights of artistry in making and decorating the great texts of the Church in the 8th century in the hybrid Insular style. We take a further look at the part played by contemporary Celtic art and the possible significance of this repertoire of abstract and plastic motifs in a complex art with multiple layers of meaning. An opportunity to look closely at some of the finest illumination in the world.  
  16:20 Close  

About Dr Susan Youngs

Susan Youngs, F.S.A., was formerly a Curator in the Department of Prehistory and Europe in the British Museum working on the Anglo-Saxon collections and specialising in the post-Roman Celtic material from Britain and Ireland. On retirement she was a Visiting Research Fellow at Jesus College, Oxford, and publishes, teaches and lectures in this field.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

Brown, Michelle, How Christianity came to Britain and Ireland (2006).
Bruce-Mitford, R., & S.Raven, The Corpus of Late Celtic Hanging-Bowls (2005).
Green, Thomas, Britons and Anglo-Saxons: Lincolnshire AD 400-650 (2012).
Henderson, G., From Durrow to Kells. The Insular Gospel-books 650–800 (1987).
Henderson, G., Vision and Image in Early Christian England (1999), esp. Chs 1 & 5.
Hills, Catherine, The Origins of the English (2003).
Jope, E.M., Early Celtic Art in the British Isles, 2 vols (2000)
Meehan, B., The Book of Durrow (1996).
Megaw, Vincent, & Ruth Megaw, Celtic Art from its Beginnings to the Book of Kells (2001).
Scull, Christopher, “Before Sutton Hoo: structures of power and society in early East Anglia” in M.Carver (ed.), The Age of Sutton Hoo (1992), pp.2-23.
Webster, Leslie, Anglo-Saxon Art: a New History (2012).
Yorke, Barbara, The Conversion of Britain 600 – 800 (2006).
Youngs, Susan (ed.), “The Work of Angels”: Masterpieces of Celtic Metalwork, 6th – 9th centuries AD (1989).


Please phone or email to check the availability of places. Study Days are 38 per person, which includes a full day of lectures, access to the NT site, parking, coffee and tea throughout the day, and access to the NT exhibition. Once you have reserved your place please send payment to confirm the booking. For your first booking please complete the application form to ensure that we have recorded your contact details correctly.

Wuffing Education,
4 Hilly Fields,
Woodbridge, Suffolk IP12 4DX
tel : 01394 386498

Email cliff AT wuffingeducation.co.uk
(replace 'AT' by '@' in order to send email - we used 'AT' to avoid spam robots automatically sending us emails)
Website www.wuffingeducation.co.uk

Return to list of current Study Days


We have learnt of the fame of the Wuffing folk-lords of long ago, of how those wolf-kings held the ancestral land of East Anglia....
Updated 15 August, 2013
Website by
Adroit Solutions Ltd