Medieval Writing
Who Are We?
John Tillotson Dr John Tillotson has retired from his position as a Reader in medieval history at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia. He has been teaching in this area for over three decades and has become so absorbed in medieval culture and society that some students regard him as oral testimony for the middle ages. He doesn't look so medieval here, but this is an old picture.
His contribution to this project has been to periodically announce that it would be very useful if somebody devised an interactive computer program to teach paleography. He has ransacked the Pandora’s boxes in his office for useful materials and provides a bottomless pit of expertise, when he has time. He has a great array of reference materials and can always produce a Latin dictionary or a book of dates when what you want is a translation. Without him, this project would never have been nagged into existence. Now that he has retired, we expect a more proactive contribution to decoding some of those esoteric documents in which he excels.
Dianne Tillotson Dr Dianne Tillotson has been married to the above for over three decades. Originally a science graduate, I embarked on a long educational enterprise in archaeology and anthropology in order to escape from medieval history. I did not succeed in this last endeavour. I think there are amazing similarities between the cultures of Southeast Asia and medieval Europe, but some of my friends and colleagues just don't get it. However, I never can remember who came first, Henry I or Henry II.
I have replaced the old picture that was here as not only did it give a misleading impression of my youthfulness, it also seemed to indicate that I was using prehistoric computer equipment. Well, we thought it was pretty nifty at the time when we were first embarking on multimedia projects in the mid nineties. The peering expression is due to the fact that I am trying to work out how to use the natty new webcam built into my computer while looking through the bottom of my multifocals and trying to smile at the same time. Ain't technology wonderful?
I have been devising interactive multimedia for medieval history teaching since around 1995, purely as an unpaid amateur. The biggest problem seems to be that just as you get good at something, the technology changes and you have to learn a whole bunch of new stuff. I was once a bit of a Toolbook whizz (Sigh!!). I am getting quite good at practical paleography and think it ought to be more fun and less ponderous in the manner in which it is presented. It seems that there are quite a number of you out there who agree with me, and those who don't are polite enough not to send me hate mail.
The Drs Tillotson live on a small acreage just outside Canberra. They now have three grandchildren. They are trying to save the Earth, or at least a teeny little bit of it, by planting native trees and shrubs on the coldest, windiest, driest, most soil-deficient piece of flogged out sheep paddock in the southern hemisphere. Some of the trees are now bigger than they are. They are hoping that the rural retreat from reality that they managed to raise their own two boys in will survive long enough to be enjoyed by the grandchildren, but the evil capitalist protagonists of development are breathing down their necks. Their dogs, ponies and horses that inhabited the place over the years have all passed to greener pastures, but they have acquired two donkeys, confirming the suspicions of their friends that they are slipping into their dotage.

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This site is created and maintained by Dr Dianne Tillotson, freelance researcher and compulsive multimedia and web author. Comments are welcome Material on this web site is copyright, but some parts more so than others. Please check here for copyright status and usage before you start making free with it. This page last modified 25/11/2009.