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Joanne Edge

Assistant Editor

Assistant Editor – Casebooks Project
Research Associate – Hughes Hall

I am assistant editor on the Casebooks project, a digital edition of the medical casebooks of Simon Forman (1552–1611) and Richard Napier (1559–1634), funded by the Wellcome Trust. I read, interpret and transcribe Napier's notebooks, which are published online as part of a free, searchable database. Forman and Napier recorded some 80,000 cases over a period of 38 years, which provide a unique insight into medical practice and social relations in Tudor and Stuart England.

Previously, I completed my BA in History at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education and Goldsmiths, University of London (2004–08). I then embarked on the MA in Medieval Studies at UCL (2009–10). I was awarded my PhD, entitled 'Nomen omen: the "Sphere of Life and Death" in England, c. 1200 – c. 1500' from Royal Holloway, University of London (2010–14) in February 2015. Written under the supervision of Professor Peregrine Horden, I am now preparing my thesis for publication. During my fourth year I was a Scouloudi pre-doctoral fellow at the Institute of Historical Research. At this time I was also a teaching assistant on broad medieval history courses at both Royal Holloway and King's College London, and was employed part-time at the Wellcome Library tasked with improving and updating the online catalogue of medieval manuscripts.

Research interests

  • Medieval and early modern medicine
  • Magic and divination
  • European social and cultural history c. 1100 – c. 1600
  • Manuscript studies and palaeography


'Serious Prognostic or Student Entertainment? The "Sphere of Life and Death in England", 1100–1500', Science and the Occult – from the Middle Ages through the Early Modern Period, edited by Angela C. Ghionea (Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, forthcoming)

'Licit Medicine or "Pythagorean necromancy"?: The "Sphere of Life and Death" in Late Medieval England', Historical Research 87 (2014): 611–632

Conferences organised and co-convened

'The Art of Ritual: Object, Image and Space in Medieval and Early Modern Europe', Institute of Historical Research, 17 May 2014

'A Picture of Health', Royal College of Art, 4–5 April 2013

'Medical Prognosis in the Middle Ages', Royal Holloway University of London, 26 May 2012: podcast of proceedings

Conference administrator, 'The Royal Body', Royal Holloway University of London, 2–5 April 2012

Joanne Edge

Browse and search Simon Forman's and Richard Napier's records of thousands of consultations.