go to homepage
created: Oct. 1994
updated: 26-Oct-2011
Work Profile

Richard F. M. Byrn
MA (Dublin) PhD (Leeds)

(with Honor and Eric)

Dublin University Foundation Scholarship in Modern Languages (1961).
Exchange scholarship at Tübingen University (WS’61+SS’62).
Graduated MA (Dublin University, 1964). PhD (Leeds University, 1976).

Taught in the Leeds University Department of German 1964 to 2002,
and in the
Leeds University Institute for Medieval Studies 2002-5.

Trustee of the Ripon & Leeds Diocesan Council for Social Concern
Chair of the Joint Cardigan House AP and Ripon House AP Management Committee

Recipients of the Richard Byrn Prize for German at Leeds University:

2002 David Kinder
2003 Lyndsey Evans
2004 Jonathan Calow
2005 Caroline Spencer
2006 Paul Ross

Research Interests:
Doctoral work in the field of late medieval devotional literature, in particular Church teaching on The Four Last Things. Publications arising from this include the entry on ‘Gerard van Vliederhoven’ in Die Deutsche Literatur des Mittelalters. Verfasserlexikon, and a study of ‘quattuor novissima’ teaching in Heinrich Seuse’s Horologium Sapientiae.
Blessed Henry Suso’s Vita and his theological writings remain a focus of interest.

A more recent, modern focus in Anglo-German literary relations. The volume Anglo-German Studies (co-edited with K. G. Knight) appeared in 1992, to which I contributed an essay on Alfred Andersch’s ‘Nachdichtungen’ from the English.
A sequel,
Cousins at One Remove. Anglo-German Studies 2, appeared in 1998, including ‘Mephisto in Modern English Guise’ – an analysis (marked by irony in response to irony) of the way Mephisto is presented in five modern English versions of Faust (D.J.Enright, Robert Nye, Terry Pratchett, Emma Tennant and Fay Weldon).

On medieval topics:
‘Late Medieval Eschatology: Gerard van Vliederhoven's Cordiale de IV novissimis', in Proceedings of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, Literary and Historical Section, vol.XVII, Part II, 1979.

‘Judgment and Cursings in the Psalms as Translated by Notker’, in John L. Flood und David N. Yeandle (eds.) Mit regulu bithuungan: Neue Arbeiten zur althochdeutschen Poesie und Sprache, (GAG Nr 500), Göppingen: Kümmerle, 1989.

‘National Stereotypes Reflected in German Literature’, in Simon Forde, Lesley Johnson and Alan V.Murray (eds.) Concepts of National Identity in the Middle Ages, Leeds Texts & Monographs, New Series 14, 1995.

‘Zum Begriffsfeld "rein" im religiösen Lied’, in C.Edwards, E.Hellgardt, and N.H.Ott (eds), Lied im deutschen Mittelalter. Überlieferung, Typen, Gebrauch. Chiemsee-Colloquium 1991, Tübingen: Niemeyer, 1996.

‘Das Ideal der "geistlichen Ritterschaft" mit Bezug auf Hartmann von Aue, Wolfram von Eschenbach und Heinrich Seuse’, in Paola Schulze-Belli (ed.), Mediaevalia Tergestina, Trieste 1998 (pub. 2002), 7-21.

Nahtstelle Handschrift — Druckvorlage: Johannes Bämler im Augsburger Kloster S.Ulrich u. Afra’, in Texttyp und Textproduktion in der deutschen Literatur des Mittelalters, Herausgegeben von Elizabeth Andersen, Manfred Eikelmann, Anne Simon unter Mitarbeit von Silvia Reuvekamp, Walter de Gruyter, Berlin, New York, 2005, 437-450.

On literary topics:
Jonathan Swift's Locket for Stella Swift: a sacramental marriage-'certificate'?’, in Swift Studies 3 (The Annual of the Ehrenpreis Center, Münster) ed.Hermann J.Real, pp.1-7, München: Fink, 1988, pp.1-7.

Jonathan Swift's Locket for Stella Swift: Further Considerations’, in Swift Studies 6 (The Annual of the Ehrenpreis Center, Münster), ed.H.J.Real, München: Fink, 1991, pp.38-48.

‘ugly short infantry of the mind – dreckige infanterie des geistes: Alfred Andersch and the English Language’, in R.F.M.Byrn and K.G.Knight (eds.) Anglo German Studies, Proceedings of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, Literary and Historical Section, vol.XXII, Part 1, 1992.

‘Mephisto in Modern English Guise’, in Richard Byrn (ed) Cousins at One Remove. Anglo-German Studies 2, Leeds: Northern Universities Press, 1998.

On the Leeds University German Department (1956-2000):
LektorInnenlob. 45 Years Applied Völkerverständigung at Leeds University – This volume features reminiscences of their time in Leeds by 17 former Lectors (1956-2000) plus contemporaneous recollections of Germany by 6 English contributors.
Also included is an account of the Leeds-Tübingen and Leeds-Leipzig academic links, plus a record of German Department personnel, book publications, sample graduation statistics, an account of how policy on teaching the German language developed during these decades, and a record of the LektorInnentreffen held at the end of July 2000.