The Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature has awarded the Medium Ævum Essay Prize since 2008. The competition is run annually, with postgraduates and those recently graduated with a higher degree invited to submit an essay on a topic that falls within the range of the interests of Medium Ævum in the medieval period (loosely defined as the fifth to the fifteenth century, in the Western calendar).

The winner of the Essay Prize will receive a cash prize of £500. The winning article is also eligible to be considered for publication in Medium Ævum, subject to the usual editorial procedures of the journal.

The annual deadline for submissions for the Essay Prize is 12 noon on the first Monday of December of the preceding year. The rules of the competition, and an online entry form, are available under the links Essay Prize Rules and Submit an Entry, under the Essay Prize tab in the main menu bar of the Society website. Any queries can be directed to the Executive Officer of the Society.


Winner Miguel Fernandes
The University of Chicago
Numbers, words, and gestures: Grammar and the medieval tradition of finger-counting
Winner Viktoriia Krivoshchekova
Maynooth University
Vice and Virtue as Cognitive Experiences in Early Irish Tradition
Proxime Accessit Nia Moseley-Roberts
University of Oxford
Crafted Voices: Utility and Fluidity in Ancrene Wisse
Winner James Parkhouse
University of Oxford
Legends in the Landscape: The Revenge of Weland in Southern English Toponymy
Proxime Accessit Aylin Malcolm
University of Pennsylvania
All Dogs Go to Heaven: Reason, Literary Style, and Animal Cognition in Adelard of Bath’s Questiones naturales
No Award Made
Winner Claudio Cataldi
University of Bristol
The Medieval Tale of the Eight Hellhounds
Winner Julia Mattison
University of Toronto
Line-Fillers in Chaucer's Verse
Proxime Accessit Gillian Redfern
University of Manchester
Knowing Me Knowing You: Three Knowingly Northern Plays by the Wakefield Master
Winner Georgia Henley
Reading Geoffrey of Monmouth in Wales: the Basis of the Welsh Brut y Brenhinedd in Latin Commentaries, Glosses and Variant Texts
Winner Robert Gallagher
University of the Basque Country

Latin Acrostic Poetry in Late Anglo-Saxon England: Reassessing the Contribution of John the Old Saxon

Published in MÆ 86/2/249
Winner Elizabeth Wright
University of York

Marian Hymns and Sacred Vocal Music in London, British Library, Cotton Vespasian D. vi. : Five Previously Unpublished Anglo-Latin Texts

Proxime Accessit Megan Murton
Xavier University

The Prioress's Prologue: Dante, Liturgy and Ineffability

Winner Christine Wallis
University of Sheffield

‘Unpublished Drypoint Annotations in Oxford, Corpus Christi College 279B’

Published in MÆ 85/1/15
Winner Jill Fitzgerald
University of Illinois

‘Angelus Pacis: A Liturgical Model for the 'fæle friðowebba' in Cynewulf's 'Elene'’

Published in MÆ 83/2/189
Proxime Accessit Aisling Byrne
Merton College, Oxford

A Lost Insular Version of the Romance of Octavian

Published in MÆ 83/2/288
No Award Made
Winner Jennifer Jahner
University of Pennsylvania

Altera Natura: Conduct, Craft and Nature in The Owl and the Nightingale

Winner Thomas Hinton
Jesus College, Oxford

New Beginnings and False Dawns: A Reappraisal of the Elucidation Prologue to the Conte del Graal Cycle 

Published in MÆ 80/1/41
Proxime Accessit Eliza Zingesser
Princeton University

Speaking as One: Linguistic Diversity and Moral Unity in Troubadour Chansonnier Y (Bibliothèque Nationale de France MS. fr. 795)

Winner Elizabeth Boyle
Corpus Christi College, Cambridge

Neoplatonic thought in medieval Ireland: the evidence of Scéla na esérgi

Published in MÆ 78/2/216
Winner Kathleen Palti
University College, London

An Unpublished fifteenth-century carol collection: Oxford, Lincoln College MS Lat. 141

Published in MÆ 77/2/260
Monday, December 4, 2023 - 12:00am to 11:59pm