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Westminster Abbey – Fraternité talk: When the English spoke French

18 April - 18:00 - 19:30

Join James Robinson, Interim Director of Collections at the V&A, to discover the complex and interdependent relationship of England and Continental Europe during the Middle Ages.

James Robinson, curator of the exhibition Medieval Treasures from the Victoria and Albert Museum: When the English spoke French, will draw from the museum’s significant collection of medieval art to illustrate the historic cultural and artistic links between medieval England and France.

James will be joined after his talk by Dr Susan Jenkins, Curator, Westminster Abbey who will discuss the possible French origins of the Abbey’s great medieval altarpiece, the ‘Westminster Retable’, commissioned in around 1259 by King Henry III.

About James Robinson

James Robinson, currently Interim Director of Collections at the Victoria and Albert Museum, is an established authority on medieval material culture. He was formerly the Director of The Burrell Collection, Glasgow and has published and lectured widely in the field.

About Susan Jenkins

Dr Susan Jenkins, FSA joined Westminster Abbey as Curator in 2014 to prepare the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries for opening in 2018. She has held curatorial roles at the Victoria and Albert Museum, Historic Royal Palaces and English Heritage. She has a doctorate in art history and studied at the University of Cambridge and the Courtauld Institute and has published widely on art historical subjects.

Additional information

You are welcome to attend Evensong at 5pm before the talk.

Doors for the talk in Cheneygates open at 6pm.

The talk starts at 6.30 and will last approximately 1 hour with an opportunity for questions.


These activities are part of Fraternité, a spring season at the Abbey celebrating the links between the UK and France with music, talks and events.


18 April
18:00 - 19:30
Event Category:


Westminster Abbey
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Westminster Abbey

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