I read Classics and English as an undergraduate at LMH (1998-2001), before coming to Jesus College in 2002 to do my MPhil and DPhil in Celtic. After that I was appointed to a Research Fellowship at Peterhouse, Cambridge, followed by five years as Fellow and Tutor in Old and Middle English at Lincoln College, Oxford. After a year teaching Irish in the Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse, and Celtic in Cambridge, I returned to Oxford and to Jesus College in my present role. I combine the Departmental Lectureship in Celtic at Jesus with the Fitzjames Fellowship in Medieval English at Merton College.
I teach Welsh and Irish language and literature, especially (but not only) that from the Middle Ages, as well as the minor Celtic languages, Cornish, Scottish Gaelic, Breton, and Manx. In my other role I teach Old and Middle English.
Welsh and Irish medieval literature, especially mythology, magic, and Irish saga.
I specialise in medieval Irish saga, Irish mythology, the intellectual and cultural relationship between the Celtic-speaking countries and the wider medieval world, magic and the supernatural in Welsh and Irish literature, ecocriticism, and the reception and afterlife of Celtic literatures in modernity, including in the Irish Revival.
I have two monographs, 'Fiery Shapes: Celestial Portents and Astrology in Ireland and Wales, 700-1700' (OUP, 2010), and 'Ireland's Immortals: A History of the Gods of Irish Myth' (Princeton UP, 2016). I am currently working on a book of essays about magic in medieval Irish and Welsh literature.
I am a keen gardener and cook, and am training in my spare time to be a psychoanalyst, so I have a deep interest in literature and the unconscious!
Subject notes for courses taught at Jesus College:
Classics and Modern Languages
English and Modern Languages
European and Middle Eastern Languages
History and Modern Languages
Modern Languages and Linguistics
Philosophy and Modern Languages