Eoin MacNeill Lecture 2022

The Irish Manuscripts Commission is delighted to announce the publication in pamphlet form of the lecture given by Professor Ludmilla Jordanova on 26 May 2022. Entitled ‘Intricate threads and bigger pictures: lives in archives’, this is the fourth lecture in the Eoin MacNeill Lecture series.

In her lecture, Professor Jordanova considered the special case of extra-illustrated books as archival sources and how these often elaborate artefacts raise questions about the emotional and sensory dimensions of collecting. She considered the role of prints and especially portraits in their dynamic interplay with text, the sense of the past that compilers of extra-illustrated books manifest, and the ways in which institutions elicit attachment and devotion and the meanings generated by the resources involved in making extra-illustrated books — time, money and skills.

Professor Jordanova argues that these intricate connections offer threads for historians to follow while such case studies have the potential to shed light on broader issues, including professional identities and the mediating capacities of portraits, which enable people to explore and express their kinship with past lives.

You can purchase a copy of the pamphlet here.