Recent book publications

  • Denecker, Tim. 2017. Ideas on Language in Early Latin Christianity: From Tertullian to Isidore of Seville. Leiden & Boston: Brill.
  • Frederickx, Eddy, and Toon Van Hal. 2015. Johannes Goropius Becanus (1519–1573): Brabants arts en taalfanaat. Hilversum: Verloren.
  • Fryba-Reber, Anne-Marguerite, and Pierre Swiggers, eds. 2015. Karl Jaberg: Linguistique romane, géographie linguistique, théorie du langage. Orbis Supplementa 42. Louvain, Paris & Bristol (CT): Peeters.
  • O'Kelly, Dairine, and Pierre Swiggers, eds. 2014. Jean-Claude Chevalier: 1. Essais d’épistémologie grammaticale. Toulon: Éditions des Dauphins. [= Modèles linguistiques 67]

See the timeline for a more complete overview.

Upcoming conferences

The cross-linguistic application of grammatical categories and its mechanisms from antiquity to modern times (open workshop at ICHoLS XV, Milan, August 24-28, 2020)

How justified and adequate is it to describe two comparable linguistic features in different languages by means of one and the same grammatical category? This thorny issue is a persistent theme in current linguistic debates, but it is not restricted to modern institutionalized linguistics and has been around at least since antiquity, when the Romans adopted and adapted the Ancient Greek grammatical model. For instance, as a result of an incomplete adaptation, categories like ‘article’ slumbered for centuries in Latin grammars, well into the Middle Ages, when Romance languages started to develop actual articles. In the early modern period, the linguistic horizon of Europe expanded, stimulating scholars’ interest in linguistic diversity. This development was fostered by the Renaissance rehabilitation of long-lost languages such as Greek and Hebrew, by the invention of the printing press, and by the explorations of the world. In this context, the vernacular languages of Europe and non-European languages came into the picture too. The widening linguistic horizon often caused great difficulties, especially to scholars wanting to provide a description of languages which were (initially) unfamiliar to them and/or lacked an established grammatical tradition before the early modern period (e.g. Quechua/French). In their attempts at grammatically describing such languages, they generally borrowed terms and categories from an established tradition, often that of Latin grammar.
Against this historical background, the proposed open thematic workshop aims to address the cross-linguistic application of grammatical categories and its mechanisms from antiquity to modern times. The main questions to be discussed are:

  1. How, why, and in which context does a scholar decide to apply a grammatical category tailored to one language to others?
  2. What underlying mechanisms ensure whether the cross-linguistic conceptual transfer is successful?

Contributors are encouraged to focus on (1) grammars in which this phenomenon is particularly striking (e.g. grammars with unusual models, missionary grammars) or (2) specific concepts which have repeatedly been applied cross-linguistically in various ways and senses (e.g. aorist, particle).
Proposals for this open workshop must be sent to the address of the workshop organizer (raf.vanrooy[at] They must be submitted no later than December 1, 2019.

Past conferences

The Impact of Learning Greek, Hebrew and 'Oriental' Languages on Scholarship, Science, and Society in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance (Leuven; December 13-15, 2017)

The 2017 LECTIO conference seized the 500th anniversary of the foundation of the Leuven Collegium Trilingue as an incentive both to examine the general context in which institutes like the Trilingue emerged and—more generally—to assess the overall impact of Greek and Hebrew education in the later Middle Ages and the early modern period. Special attention was directed to the learning and teaching practices and to the general impact the study of these languages exerted on scholarship, science and society. For more information, click here.

Latin language manuals from Western Christianity (350–750): An international workshop (Leuven; May 15, 2017)

This international workshop on Latin language manuals from Western Christianity, 350 to 750, took place in Leuven. The workshop programme (with abstracts) can be accessed here. The keynote speaker was Louis Holtz.

Dialect: an interdisciplinary colloquium (Edmonton; November 3, 2015)

This interdisciplinary colloquium on the concept of "dialect" took place at the University of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada). The programme of this meeting can be accessed here.

Perspectives on Language and Culture in Early Christianity (Leuven; September 10-12, 2015)

The international conference “Perspectives on Language and Culture in Early Christianity” took place in Leuven, from Thursday, September 10, to Saturday, September 12, 2015 (click here for the poster). The conference programme can be accessed here and the book of abstracts here. The keynote speakers were Thorsten Fögen, Alfons Fürst, Louis Holtz, and Josef Lössl.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License