Friday, May 18, 2012

Going to Cincinnati

A month ago, I submitted an abstract to the Sixteenth Century Society Conference, which will be held this October in Cincinnati. This was a good year for it, as I missed Kalamazoo, and SCSC is being held in what is for me a relatively convenient location. A few days ago I was notified that the abstract was accepted. I'll be attending SCSC for the first time, so I don't know quite what to expect from the conference yet. I haven't seen the program, so I don't know what panel I'll be on, or when it will be.

While I was debating whether or not "Wilhelm Friess" was a book-sized project last year, I gave a paper in Kalamazoo about the first "Wilhelm Friess" prophecy and its path from Antwerp to Nuremberg. Now, a year later, I know it's a book-sized project because I've finished the book manuscript. I've finished it twice, actually, and now I know that some central chapters need to be rewritten for the third, and hopefully the last, revision.

In Cincinnati, I'll be talking about how the first and second prophecies are connected. They are two entirely different texts representing different and in some ways opposite perspectives, and yet they are both attributed to the same deceased author, and both claim to have been found with him after his death. Among late medieval and early modern prophecies, this is to my knowledge unique. Did whoever wrote the second prophecy merely appropriate Friess's name for the second prophecy?

I don't think so. I think the two texts are intimately connected. In Cincinnati, I'll try to trace the path from Friess I to Friess II, this time from Nuremberg back to Antwerp and then on to Strasbourg and Basel.

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