East Anglia – Museums & Education






20th January : Suffolk`s Valley of the Kings:

Dr Sam Newton (Wuffing Education at Sutton Hoo)

An exploration of the largely forgotten  but clearly rich history of the Deben valley and its tributaries in the light of what we can see of its archaeology, art, place-names, and landscape history, and especially of the recent work at Rendlesham.


27th January : Collapse and Recovery : the Revival of Learning in the First Millennium

Charles Freeman (Independent Scholar)

Starting with the look at traditional Roman education, we shall consider early libraries, how texts were preserved from the Sixth Century, and how learning was revived under the Frankish King Charlemagne.


3rd February : The Oldest Extant Houses; The Homes of Medieval Rural Folk in East Anglia

Philip Aitkens (Historic Buildings Consultant)

A study of the little open-hall houses found in most of the villages of High Suffolk and of South-East Norfolk, the best evidence we have of Medieval rural lifestyle, varying greatly in plan-form, size and quality.


24th February : The Kingdoms of East-Anglia and Kent.

Dr Sam Newton (Wuffing Education at Sutton Hoo)

On the festival-day of the famous Kentish king. St. AEthelbert, we shall reassess the relations between the Wuffing dynasty of East Anglia and AEscing dynasty of Kent during the Sixth and Seventh Centuries, as indicated by archaeology, art, and documentary sources.


3rd March : Raising the Dead : The Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon Death and Burial.

Dr Richard Hoggett (Heritage Consultant)

Burials constitute a large part of the archaeological record from Anglo-Saxon England, and this study-day uses the rich East-Anglian burial record to explore the range of burial rites practiced by the Anglo-Saxons. Subjects to be covered include the human skeleton, cremation, inhumation, the use of grave-goods and the impact of Christianity. The day will be illustrated with examples drawn from recent and unpublished excavations, as well as some classic sites.


10th March : Death, Loss, and Dragon Hoards: Early Anglo-Saxon Art.

Dr Angela Evans, former Curator, British Museum.

The Anglo-Saxons had a powerful visual imagination whose legacy is seen in the decoration of their personal possessions, but interpreting the design can often be challenging. The day will be devoted to looking in detail at the background and development of the extraordinarily complex ornament on early Anglo-Saxon metalwork, then following some of the motifs to their adoption on early manuscripts and, finally, to their flowering on high status metalwork during the later Saxon period.


17th March : St. Patrick (c 380-c. 461) – His Life. Times, and Legacy.

Dr Maive Ni Mhaonaigh (University of Cambridge).

The fame of St. Patrick, patron saint of Ireland, is associated today with banishment of saints and (primarily in America) green beer. We will examine sources for his life, times and legacy and explore the making of this very famous saint.


24th March : The Story of European Armour, c. 600 – 1650.

Tobias Capwell (Curator of Arms & Armour. The Wallace Collection, London).

As a protective system designed to augment the human body, the history of European armour follows paths and patterns remarkably reminiscent of biological evolution in the natural world. In this series of lectures we follow the development of human exoskeletons across made than a thousand years. Watching as one remarkable species, the elite armoured warrior, evolves to survive in a dangerous and ever-changing environment.


21st April : Art and History in the Bayeux Tapestry.

Dr Sam Newton (Wuffing Education at Sutton Hoo).

An exploration of this magnificent embroidery, the most important work of narrative art of Anglo-Norman culture, and of the great story it tells in the light of early Medieval art and literature.



28th April : The Icelandic Family Sagas.

Dr Heather O’Donohue (University of Oxford).

This Study-Day will explore the Icelandic family sagas, with their detailed descriptions of daily life in early Middle Ages, their powerful stories of passion and revenge, and their extraordinary literary sophistication.





12th May : The Gold of the Iceni.

Jude Plouviez (former Senior Archaeological Officer, Suffolk County Council).

We shall examine the practice of hoarding wealth in the Territory of the Iceni throughout the period that they are historically attested as a tribal group in East Anglia, from the Iron Age Snettisham torcs to the huge late Roman treasures found at Mildenhall and Hoxne.



19th May : St. AEthelbert : East Anglia’s other king and Martyr.

Dr Sam Newton (Wuffing Education at Sutton Hoo).

On the eve of his festival dat, an exploration of what we can see of the history of East Anglia’s less well-known king and Martyr, AEthelbert. We begin with a look at the history of England and East Anglia in the latter part of the eighth century. We shall assess what we can deduced of the events surrounding king AEthelbert’s murder near Hereford on 20th May 794, and the part played by the Mercian king Offa and his queen, Cynethryth. We shall then consider the later history of the cult of St. AEthelbert.



9th June : The Staffordhire Hoard : An Unparelled Treasure of Anglo-Saxon England.

Dr Chris Fern (Heritage Consultant, University of York).

The Staffordshire Hoard, discovered in 2009, is the largest accumulation of Anglo-Saxon treasure ever found. It included hundreds of gold and silver fittings from military and ecclesiastical equipment. An extensive programme of analysis of these has just been completed, the findings of which we will consider, we assess what the treasure now contributes to our understanding of elite Anglo-Saxon society in a time of intensive inter-kingdom warfare and changing religious allegiance.



16th June : The Transformations of the Year 600 A.D.

Professor Guy Halsall (University of York).

This Study-Day will examine and try to explain how Western Europe was transformed in the later sixth and earlier seventh centuries. St. Augustine’s mission to England and the Sutton Hoo ship burial were part of major continent wide changes.


________________________________________________________________________________23rd June : Wonder-Women of Early Anglo-Saxon England.

Dr Sam Newton (Wuffing Education at Sutton Hoo).

On the festival day of St. AEthelthryth, the Wuffing princess and founding-abbess of Ely, we shall reassess female power among the Old English-speaking peoples. Beginning with a look at the pre-Christian evidence, we shall see how this appears to have been realized in early Christian England by the impressive numbers of saintly royal abbesses like St. AEthelthryth and her sisters, especially St. Seaxburh, queen of Kent, king-mother, and founding abbess of Minster on Sheppey, and St. Wihburh of Dereham, others include the extraordinary St. Balthid, who began as slave but rose to become a Frankish princess, queen, king-mother, regent, nun, and saint.



30th June : From Childeric to Charlemagne : Imagining Power in the Kingdom of the Franks.

Professor Leslie Webster (University College London).

During the day we shall consider Childeric and the earliest Frankish kings. Frankish princely burials of the 6th and 7th centuries; Frankish women – in particular Queens, princesses, saints and abbesses; we shall finish by looking at Charlemagne and the rebirth of an empire.



7th July : An exploration of the Wonders of Old English Language and its Literature.

Steve Pollington (Independent Anglo-Saxon Scholar).

This Study-Day is both for beginners and those with some familiarity with Old English. Starting with the rudiments of the language and its written forms, we shall analyse some sample texts, not just for the excitement of reading words written so many centuries ago, for example by Alfred the Great himself, but also to unlock the beauty of the language in action. Finally, there will be an opportunity to reflect on the echoes of the Old English language in current forms of English.




Wuffing Education Study Days give in-depth explorations for newcomers, enthusiasts and specialists in the archaeology, history, landscape, language, literature and art of medieval England, and of the Wuffing Kingdom of east Anglia in particular.

Each study day costs £38- for a full day of lectures from nationally recognized speakers, teas & coffee throughout the day, parking, as well as access to the NT visitor centre, exhibition and the Sutton Hoo.

Prior Booking essential – 01394-386498 ask for Cliff or cliff@wuffingeducation.co.uk
4,Hilly Field, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP12 4DX.

reductions:If you are attending a Study Day and bring a friend (who has not been to any Study Days before) then they can come for half-price £19- Now – from 1st April 2011 – every sixth Study Day you book in half-price. More details on the web-site

they are constantly planning new events, which from personal experience are very good.