Grosseteste’s ‘scientific’ treatises – reflecting on principles of investigation

20140719_153317IMG_5592One of the unifying themes across Grosseteste’s ‘scientific’ treatises is that he carefully observed the natural world around him and furthermore assumed that there should be a set of fundamental, universally applicable principles explaining the ordered complexity with which he was confronted. For Grosseteste creation was an act of divine generosity, an overflowing of God’s joy and goodness, and, as a product of the fount and origin of reason (as well as love, justice, joy and so forth), was itself inherently rational. Nature forms a source of knowledge about God alongside the revelation of Scripture. Continue reading

Medicine, Science and a Porto Perspective

En route to Porto – lay-over in Lisbon Airport…

I first heard about The Ordered Universe Project in a seminar led by Giles Gasper and Tom McLeish at Durham last autumn. As someone who specialises in medieval medicine and gender, I was initially fascinated by their willingness to combine medieval science with modern physics, yet I was unaware of what contribution (if any) I could ever bring to such a combining of minds. Medieval medicine, though within the same frame of understanding as medieval science, was a very different thing to what Grosseteste was trying to do. Or at least that is what I originally thought. Continue reading

Ordered Universe Workshops

A record of the main collaborative workshops we have held, from the birth of the project to read scientific works of the High Middle Ages in an interdisciplinary forum, to the most recent focused sessions on the treatise on the rainbow. The process of team-building is a long one, and involves forging bonds of trust, personally and intellectually, between team members, and across disciplines. Each workshop advances the project, sharpens translations and interpretative questions, introduces new issues and new participants. Workshops are democratic and open to all, current and retired staff, post-docs, PhD and MA students and undergraduates. Continue reading