Prepare to be surprised and delighted!

Sword-wielding soldiers and cavalry horses will be storming campus this week!

Cavalrymen dressed in full medieval regalia will perform live combat and sword fighting, as part of Making Leeds Medieval

Knights fighting at Medieval Congress July 2017

Now in its 26th year, the International Medieval Congress (IMC) plans to Make Leeds Medieval again.

Europe’s largest academic conference in the humanities is set to surprise, delight, and intrigue staff once again this summer. Beginning on Monday 1 July, the Congress has a range of public events for colleagues to attend, both educational and entertaining.

This year’s parade of cavalry horses promises to be every bit as exciting as last year’s flying dragons. Horses and cavalrymen dressed in full regalia will be paraded in University Square for Making Leeds Medieval – an exciting day of free medieval-themed entertainment on Thursday 4 July. Running from 10.30am to 6pm, there will be arms, armour and medieval surgery displays, performances, calligraphy and rope-making demonstrations, live combat and sword fighting, falconry displays and much more.

IMC 2019 2 June 2019Falconry displays will also feature as part of the free medieval-themed entertainment

There will also be a medieval marketplace selling everything from cake and honey to medieval-inspired pottery.

The IMC Craft Fair will run on Wednesday 3 and Thursday 4 July. About 20 stalls will be exhibiting a variety of wares. Expect to find beautiful jewellery, beads, wool, stationery and homewares. All the exhibitors have an interest in some aspect of the medieval, be it the designs of floor tiles and manuscripts or the way they fire their clay, and they incorporate these interests lovingly into their works.

IMC 2019 1 June 2019Beautiful jewellery, beads, wool, stationary and homewares can be bought during the IMC Craft Fair

There will also be two medieval music concerts on Monday 1 and Tuesday 2 July. Monday’s 7pm concert will display the talents of the Leeds Cathedral Children’s Choir, who from an early age are fluent in reading both modern and medieval music following lessons in medieval chant and Renaissance polyphony.

Tuesday’s 8.30pm concert will be performed by Trouvère, a group who love to perform the songs and chants of medieval courtly love. They will re-enact – in music and song – the life and times of William Marshall, the greatest English knight, on the 800th anniversary of his death.

Both shows take place in the Clothworker’s Concert Hall at the School of Music, with tickets available on the door, priced £12.50 for the Monday concert and £14.50 for Tuesday’s performance.

In addition, there are six free concerts and performances taking place throughout the week, which colleagues are more than welcome to attend.

Throughout the week, a large book fair will be held in Parkinson Court, with stalls from some of the leading publishers in academia and the humanities worldwide. Titles range from the seriously specialised to popular works, giving insights for the casual reader interested in medieval studies. This is a great chance to see what medieval studies has to offer from around the world, and meet with publishers, editors and authors.

IMC 2019 3 June 2019Browse the thousands of titles on sale in the Parkinson Court book fair

Accompanying the main book fair on Sunday 30 June to Tuesday 2 July, there is a second-hand and antiquarian book fair in the LUU foyer. Drop in for antiques, rarities and that good old bookshop smell!

The Historical and Archaeological Societies Fair on Thursday 4 July showcases local charity and community efforts to save and bring notice to landmarks and sites of historical importance. From battlefields to abbeys, to tapestries and barns, they are the people volunteering to preserve our history.

Additionally, throughout the week, the Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery in Parkinson Building will be running a series of medieval-themed drop-in sessions.

All the fairs, displays and demonstrations, as well as a number of performances, are free to attend for colleagues. You can visit all these public events and fairs right on your doorstep, so step outside this summer and take a look!

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