Volume VI | Preface to the original printed volume Next Back to catalogue index
by David M. Wilson, Chairman, Committee for the Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture, 2001

This volume of the Academy's Corpus of Anglo Saxon Sculpture represents a great triumph. It is also a sad triumph, for the author James Lang died towards the end of its preparation. With great courage he battled against a debilitating disease and continued to work on it until he could write no more. He died on 24 January 1997. Jim Lang will be sorely missed by all who study the Anglo Saxon period. For nearly thirty five years he had worked on the pre Conquest sculpture of the North of England with energy and imagination. But his work extended far beyond the strict format of these volumes, for he was full of ideas about the way in which the sculpture was produced, about the meaning of the motifs found upon the stones and about their relationship outside his immediate area of study. His monograph on the hogback tombstones will remain a standard work. He was a cheerful scholar and a good companion.

The present volume complements that on York and Eastern Yorkshire, which Jim Lang wrote as the third volume in this series. The Committee recognises that it could not have been produced without a great deal of effort on the part of a number of scholars dedicated to the proposition that Professor Lang's work should not go unpublished. The contributions of these scholars are detailed by the General Editor elsewhere in this volume. The Committee and the Academy thank all of them for the generosity of time and effort which brought this work to fruition. The Committee must, however, express particular thanks for the benign and creative, yet tactful, editorship of Rosemary Cramp and most especially the Research Fellow, Derek Craig, who has checked and corrected the entries, compiled the bibliography, identified new pieces and completed the photography. For this we are indeed grateful; without these efforts this volume would not have appeared. The support of the Academy, its Secretary and other officers has been of inestimable value throughout this long process and must be most gratefully acknowledged. We would also wish to thank the Arts and Humanities Research Board for a major grant made during the course of the preparation of this volume, a gesture which heartens us by recognising the value of our work. Lastly we must express out thanks to the University of Durham for their continuing and unfailing support for the project and for housing both the Corpus's staff and its archive.

Chairman, Committee for the Corpus
of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture, 2001

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