Ideas about the whole sweep of Anglo-Saxon history and in particular the importance of combining skills from many disciplines are at the centre of this volume. Walter Goffart invites us to think again about what Bede meant by 'the true law of history', while Joanna Story argues that the early Frankish annals give us important insight into the raw material available to Bede. J. R. Madicott traces the rapid development of Mercian power in Bede's time, and a team of textual scholars and scientists report on their experiments to test the efficacy of Anglo-Saxon medical prescriptions. At the other end of the period, Gale R. Owen-Crocker shows how the birds in the margins of the Bayeux Tapestry are used to comment on the narrative of the Norman Conquest, while Rebecca Rushforth finds evidence for continued post-Conquest interest in the descendents of the royal house of Wessex. The usual comprehensive bibliography of the previous year's publications in all branches of Anglo-Saxon studies rounds off the book.
List of illustrations; 1. Record of the eleventh conference of the International Society of Anglo-Saxonists, at Arizona State University Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 4-9 August 2003; 2. London and Droitwich, c. 650-750: trade, industry and the rise of Mercia J. R. Maddicott; 3. The Frankish Annals of Lindisfarne and Kent Joanna Story; 4. Bede's uera lex historiae explained Walter Goffart; 5. Orientalist fantasy in the poetic dialogues of Solomon and Saturn Kathryn Powell; 6. Verses quite like cwen to gebeddan in The Metres of Boethius M. S. Griffith; 7. Fragments of Boethius: the reconstruction of the Cotton manuscript of the Alfredian text Susan Irvine; 8. A reassessment of the efficacy of Anglo-Saxon medicine Barbara Brennessel, Michael D. C. Drout and Robyn Gravel; 9. Virgin spouses as model Christians: the legend of Julian and Basilissa in 'lfric's Lives of Saints Robert K. Upchurch; 10. Frithegod of Canterbury's Maundy Thursday hymn Rosalind C. Love; 11. Squawk talk: commentary by the birds in the Bayeux Tapestry? Gale R. Owen-Crocker; 12. The Bury Psalter and the descendants of Edward the Exile Rebecca Rushforth; 13. Bibliography for 2004 Paul G. Remley, Carole P. Biggam, Debby Banham, Mark Blackburn, Carole Hough, Simon Keynes and Rebecca Rushforth.