Miriam Adan Jones MA

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photo Miriam Jones
+31 20 59 83185
faculteit religie en theologie ( texts & tradition )


My PhD project, ‘Catholics of the English Race’ explores the overlap between ethnic and ecclesiological categories in England in the early Middle Ages (ca. 650-1050). When Anglo-Saxon authors speak of the ‘church of the English’, what do they mean? How does this ethnically circumscribed church relate to other ecclesiological categories such as the diocese, the province, or the universal church? And how does this change as, over the course of the centuries, political and social changes alter the meaning of ‘Englishness’?

The sources for my study include epistolary, historiographic, homiletic, exegetical and hagiographic works, and are clustered in two groups: one from the earlier and one from the later half of the period under study. By analyzing these sources’ use of ethnic and ecclesiological language, I aim to reconstruct a picture of the way ethnicity could function as an ecclesiological category in early medieval Britain, both before and after the unification of the English kingdom.

My work is funded by a PhDs in the Humanities grant from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) and supervised by prof. dr. Hagit Amirav and prof. dr. Paul van Geest.


2009 - BA Theology and Religious Studies, Evangelische Theologische Faculteit, Leuven (met onderscheiding)

2012 - MA Theology, VU University, Amsterdam (cum laude)

2013 - MA Religion and Theology (research), VU University, Amsterdam (cum laude; thesis awarded the annual faculty Thesis Prize)

2013 - contract courses Old English, Leiden University


'The Language of Baptism in Early Anglo-Saxon England: The Case for Old English', Studies in Church History 53 (forthcoming in 2017).

‘Progress and Regress: Gregory the Great on Pagan and Jewish Influences in Anglo-Saxon Christianity’, in: Marianne Sághy, Edward Schoolman and Zsolt Visy (eds.), Pagans and Christians in Late Antiquity: New Evidence, New Approaches (Budapest: CEU Press, forthcoming).

'A Chosen Missionary People? Willibrord, Boniface, and the Election of the Angli,' Medieval Worlds 3 (2016): 98-115. (Read online here.)

‘Origen’s Authority: Exegetical Borrowings and Doctrinal Departures in Gregory the Great’s Expositio in Canticum canticorum’, in: Anders-Christian Jacobsen (ed.), Origeniana Undecima: Origen and Origenism in the History of Western Thought, Bibliotheca Ephemeridum Theologicarum Lovaniensum 279 (Leuven: Peeters, 2016), 575-585.

Review of: Paul M. Collins & Barry Ensign-George (eds.), Denomination. Assessing an Ecclesiological Category, Ecclesiological Investigations 11 (London: T&T Clark, 2011), x + 177 pp., £60.00, ISBN 9780567131317, Journal of Reformed Theology 7.1 (2013): 129-130.



'Father of the English, Teacher and Apostle: Gregory the Great, Apostleship, and English Ethnogenesis', New Voices in Anglo-Saxon Studies, International Medieval Congress, Leeds (UK), 4-8 July 2016.

'Gelobistu? Credo. The Rise and Fall of the Germanic Baptismal Interrogation', Junius Symposium voor Jonge Oudgermanisten, Leiden (The Netherlands), 7 April 2016.

'Vernacular Baptism and the Church of the English', Winter meeting of the Ecclesiastical History Society, London (UK), 16 January 2016.


‘A Clash of Christianities?: English Missionaries in a Frankish Church’, International Medieval Congress, Leeds (UK), 6-9 July 2015.


‘Novus Christo Populus: Anglo-Saxon Mission and Ethnic Election’, Thirty-Sixth Symposium on Old English, Middle English and Historical Linguistics in the Low Countries, Leiden (The Netherlands), 19 December 2014.

'A Chosen People on the Move: Anglo-Saxon Mission and Ethnic Election', Migration and Mission in Christian History: joint meeting of the American Society for Church History and the Ecclesiastical History Society, Oxford (UK), 3-5 April 2014.


'Origen as Auctor? Exegetical Borrowings and Doctrinal Departures in Gregory the Great's Expositio in Canticum canticorum', Origeniana Undecima, Aarhus University, Aarhus (Denmark), 26-31 August 2013.

'Conversion as Convergence: Understanding Gregory the Great's Attitude Towards Pagan and Jewish Influences in Anglo-Saxon Christianity', Pagans and Christians in the Late Roman Empire: New Evidence, New Approaches (4th-6th Centuries), Central European University, Budapest and University of Pécs (Hungary), 7-10 March 2013.