Dr John Davies
- Research Fellow: Associate Director of Arts Lab (Arts College Senior Management)
- Affiliated Researcher in School of Humanities (School of Humanities)
Since June 2021, John Davies has been Associate Director of Arts Lab, with responsibility for Labs and Themes, and is lead for cross-college research collaborations in the College of Arts.
John read Theology at Durham University, where he focused on Church History and Liturgy. After gaining his PhD from the University of Cambridge, he held a research post at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. In 2004 he joined the School of History, Classics, and Archaeology at the University of Edinburgh. He became part of the History team at the University of Glasgow in 2008. His main interests include the ecclesiastical history of Britain in the middle ages, with a special interest in ecclesiastical organisation, the cult of saints, hagiography, and liturgy. His most recent work has been on the diplomatic and palaeography of medieval charters; monastic chronicles; the study of liturgy (liturgical theology as well as liturgical history); and medieval Scottish Law. His current project is a new edition and annotated translation of a fourteenth-century work, Regiam Maiestatem, the oldest treatise on Scottish Law, which will be published in the Stair Society's series of hardback volumes in late Spring 2022.
In addition to scholarship relating to the Insular middle ages, John also works on cross-cultural comparative history with historians in India, exploring early medieval records of property-transfer. John's interest in Indian history, and close working partnership with the University of Calcutta, has led to further ventures, concerned with Indian cultural heritage, and he has organised several workshops in Kolkata on the historical cultural heritage of Bengal as well as the lived heritage of minority and diaspora communities. The main output of the most recent collaborative project with colleagues in Kolkata is The Making of Goddess Durga: Art, Heritage and the Public (edited by S. K. Das & B. Basak, Springer 2021), which highlights the challenges of heritage facing the community of Kumbhakars (religious sculptors) in Kumartuli and wider Bengal, opening up cross-disciplinary conversations and situating itself at the interface between art history, the sociology of aesthetics, politics and government, social history, cultural studies, social anthropology and archaeology. John was elected a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland in 2016.
Since 2012 John has been editor of The Innes Review: The Journal of Scottish Catholic History and sits on the council of the Scottish Catholic Historical Association. From 2015 to 2019 he served on the council of the Scottish History Society (the leading publisher of original sources relating to the history of Scotland).
Outside the University, John has been a member of the Liturgy Committee of the Scottish Episcopal Church since 2009 (as Convener 2015 to 2020), and the International Anglican Liturgical Consultation since 2017. He was a member of the Joint Liturgical Group of Great Britain 2015 to 2020, and sat on the Faith and Order Board of the Scottish Episcopal Church 2015 to 2020.
- Ecclesiastical history of Great Britain in the middle ages
- Medieval Charters
- Medieval Chronicles
- The Lives of the Saints
- Medieval Prosopography
- Digital Humanities
- History of Medieval Wales
- History of Medieval Scotland
- Scottish Wars of Independence
- History of Liturgy
- Liturgical Theology
- Global Middle Ages
- Comparative History
- Medieval Scottish Law
2017 PI, ‘Preserving and promoting the historical cultural heritage of communities in Bengal’. A GCRF pump-priming project funded through the Scottish Funding Council. Collaborators: University of Calcutta, University of Delhi (India), Jahangirnagar University (Dhaka, Bangladesh), Indian Museum (Kolkata, Government of India), West Bengal State Archaeology Museum (Behala, West Bengal State Govt. Directorate of Archaeology and Museums). £5,600.
2014/15 PI, ‘Land-holding and the recording of property transfer: the comparative experience of medieval Scotland and early medieval Bengal’. Research collaboration between the University of Glasgow and the University of Calcutta funded by the British Academy’s International Partnership Mobility Scheme. £9,968.
- Gardner, Owain
Music, Knowledge, Faith and Reform in the Thought and Practice of Robert Grosseteste and J. S. Bach
What does it mean that God is 'Father' and 'Lord'? A textual analysis of liturgical elements in the Scottish Liturgy 1982 and a feminist response
Professional activities & recognition
Prizes, awards & distinctions
- 2020: Research Culture Award (University of Glasgow)
- 2012: Innes Review (Editor)
- 2015 - 2019: Scottish History Society
- 2021: Scottish Episcopal Institute Journal
Professional & learned societies
- 2012: Officer and Trustee, Scottish Catholic Historical Association
- 2016: Fellow, Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland
- 2016: Member, Society for Liturgical Study
- 2016: Member, Henry Bradshaw Society
- 2019: Member, Stair Society
- 2021: Member, Societas Liturgica
Selected international presentations
- 2017: Public Lecture (The Indian Museum, Kolkata, India)
- 2018: Special Lecture (University of Calcutta)