MENU
THE ARTS SOCIETY
GRANTA
Click here for future lectures

DateLecture
18 February 2020English Climate or French Perfidy: the failure of English sericulture
14 January 2020Engraved on my Heart: Mary Tudor, the Cloth of the Field of Gold and Notre-Dame de Calais
03 December 2019Io Saturnalia! Happy Christmas the Roman way
12 November 2019The Queen of Instruments: the lute within Old Master paintings
15 October 2019From Bronzes to Banksy: an armchair tour of public art and street art
11 June 2019JMW Turner and the Day Parliament Burned Down
14 May 2019Shakespeare : The Birth of Modern Show-Business
16 April 2019Fortitude and Fancy : Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn
12 March 2019Artists and Espionage
12 February 2019Shaken by an earthquake : Stravinsky, the Ballets Russes and The Rite of Spring
15 January 2019Mad Men and the Artists - How The Art Industry has exploited Fine Art
04 December 2018From Frozen Forests to Reindeer: Gems from Life
13 November 2018Zaha Hadid : Architectural Superstar
09 October 2018Celebrating the Royal Academy of Arts: its 250th Anniversary
12 June 2018The Art of the Poster: The Poor Man's Art Gallery?
15 May 2018Richer than the Romanovs: The Art of Prince Nikolai Borisovich Yusupov
17 April 2018The Phenomenon of Mining Art
13 March 2018Breeches, Bonnets and Bags: British Fashion in Art through the Ages
13 February 2018Lawrence of Arabia: Excavating a Legend
16 January 2018Going Potty about Commodes
05 December 2017Mars and the Muses:The Renaissance Art of Armour
07 November 2017Out of the Blue: The story of Blue in Art
10 October 2017The Most Infamous Family in History: The Borgias

Click on a row and scroll to display more details about the lecture

English Climate or French Perfidy: the failure of English sericulture Susan Whitfield Tuesday 18 February 2020

Sericulture was established throughout much of continental Europe by the 14th century. With the British élite joining the fashion for expensive silk clothing, in the 17th century James I set about establishing sericulture in England. Importing thousands of mulberry trees from France, by 1611 the first harvest of raw silk was produced. But the venture did not thrive. This lecture will tell the story of this failed industry, of Shakespeare’s famous mulberry and of the later — and successful — weaving industry, facilitated by the skilled Huguenot refugees seeking sanctuary in Britain.

Dr Susan Whitfield is a writer, scholar, lecturer and traveler of the Silk Roads. During 25 years curating the collections of manuscripts from Dunhuang and other Silk Road sites at the British Library, she also helped found and then developed the International Dunhuang Project (IDP), now a thriving international collaboration working on the art and artefacts of the eastern Silk Road. She has lectured and written widely on the Silk Road. Her latest book, Silk, Slaves and Stupas: Material Culture of the Silk Road, was published in March 2018. She has also curated several major exhibitions and organized field trips to archaeological sites in the Taklamakan desert.