Networking Jacobites: Media, Cultural Memory and the ‘Lyon in Mourning’ Manuscript

Event date: 
Wednesday 12 May to Thursday 13 May
Image credit: “Lyon in Mourning”. NLS, Adv.MS.32.6.18. Image courtesy of the National Library of Scotland.
On Wednesday 12 May at 16:00 - 17:30 GMT, Professor Leith Davis of Simon Fraser University (IASH Digital Scholarship Visiting Research Fellow) will discuss 'The Lyon in Mourning' manuscript, currently held by the National Library of Scotland (Adv.MS.32.6.16-26), which consists of eye-witness interviews, letters, poems, songs and speeches concerning those who had been involved in the events of the 1745 Jacobite Rising. It is a site of cultural memory as well as a complex act of data-collection and networking in its own time. But its origins as an intermedial social text copied out in Episcopalian minister Robert Forbes’s meticulous handwriting have been largely obscured by its remediation into print in the late nineteenth century.

In September 1745, Forbes was arrested and imprisoned while on his way to join Charles Edward Stuart’s Jacobite army. Upon his release in May 1746, he began to compile “for the Instruction of future Ages” what would become a 10-volume manuscript. This talk will shed new light on Forbes and on ‘The Lyon in Mourning’ manuscript as it discusses the digitization of the manuscript, a joint project between the National Library of Scotland, Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Scottish Studies and the Digital Humanities Innovation Lab. The talk will also showcase the qualitative and quantitative analyses being conducted on the manuscript in the context of contemporary networked scholarship.

Leith Davis (@LeithDavis) is a professor in the Department of English and Director of the Centre for Scottish Studies at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. She is the author of Acts of Union: Scotland and the Negotiation of the British Nation (Stanford UP, 1998) and Music, Postcolonialism and Gender: The Construction of Irish National Identity, 1725-1875 (Notre Dame UP, 2005), as well as co-editor of Scotland and the Borders of Romanticism (Cambridge UP, 2004), Robert Burns and Transatlantic Culture (Ashgate, 2012) and The International Companion to Scottish Literature in the Long Eighteenth Century (forthcoming, ASLS); her digital humanities projects include Reconstructing Early Circus and Scottish Voices from the West. Her new book, Mediating Cultural Memory in Britain and Ireland: From the 1688 Revolution to the 1745 Jacobite Rebellion (forthcoming, Cambridge UP), examines media change and cultural memory in the British archipelago from 1688-1745.

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Image credit: “Lyon in Mourning”. NLS, Adv.MS.32.6.18. Image courtesy of the National Library of Scotland.