When Michael Kauffmann wrote a few months ago offering a paper on 14th-century illustrated verse Lives of Christ for the medieval Work in Progress Seminars I accepted with alacrity. I realized that as the Courtauld would soon be welcoming a new director, the first of the medieval seminars in his reign should be given by one of our previous directors. If our new director could be present, it would be a delightful way for him to meet the medievalists at the Courtauld. Eric Fernie, with Elaine Connolly’s help, managed to arrange a date in Jim Cuno’s diary. Coincidentally, Eric was soon due to take up his fellowship at the Getty Institute, so that our retiring director, as well as our new director, could be there to hear our past director but one. This was discussed with some amusement, I gather, at a Fellows’ dinner just before Christmas, at which Peter Lasko, our past director but two, also a distinguished medievalist, was present. The idea of four directors at one seminar proved irresistible.

The event lived up to expectations. Michael’s paper was speculative, and magisterially inconclu-sive — just what a work in progress paper should be. Peter Lasko arrived slightly late, making an entrance to cheers for one more director. There was some banter between ex-directors about the relative merits of the Courtauld or Warburg approach to text and image, and a really festive spirit at the drinks afterwards. To have four directors was a most felicitious concatenation of circumstances. I wonder what the collective noun for directors might be — perhaps a convocation? Two members of the group described it as "completely charming", an unusual description for a research seminar.

LINDY GRANT — Conway Library