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Friends x SPBS Annual Lecture

James first studied Cypriot fortifications when pursuing a master’s under Prof. Allen ‘Castles’ Brown at KCL. He only returned to this interest for his second doctoral thesis (Cardiff University 2010), supervised by Prof. Denys Pringle, which he developed into a book – The Fortifications of Cyprus under the Lusignans 1191-1489 (The Cyprus Research Centre, 2012). The monograph focuses on the Lusignan period but necessarily considers what came before. A Byzantine territory for centuries before the arrival of the Crusaders, Cyprus was arguably then only lightly fortified. Surviving sites, Byzantine, Crusader, Venetian, however, are all of interest in terms of their origins, forms, and functions. They are also spectacularly located. James continues to investigate, present at conferences, and publish these fortifications. 

Recent publications include ‘Commonality in Crusader Castle Construction in Armenian Cilicia and Cyprus’, in Crusader Landscapes in the Medieval Levant (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2016); ‘Back to Baffes. A castle in Cyprus attributed to the Hospital, revisited’, in The Military Orders 6.1: culture and conflict in the Mediterranean World, (Abingdon: Routledge, 2017); and ‘Philippe Chenart and castles in Cyprus and Italy’ in The Castle Studies Group Journal 29, 2015/16. He has also delivered the paper ‘Crusader castles of Cyprus. Why?’ at Cardiff University, and at the Ninth Quadrennial Conference of the SSCLE at the University of Southern Denmark, Odense, which he is developing for the present lecture. 

The lecture will be followed by an informal reception. There is a suggested advance donation of £8.50 for Supporters of the BSA (£10.50 otherwise). RSVP to Kate Smith:  /  BSA, 10 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5AH. 

When: 31 March, 2020 @ 6:00 pm UTC+2
Where: Senate House (Room 349) – London –