Dr Rafael J. Pascual
Academic position: Lecturer in Old and Middle English
Rafael J. Pascual specializes in medieval English language and literature, with a focus on Old English poetry. He is Stipendiary Lecturer in English at New College and Lecturer in Old and Middle English at Magdalen College, University of Oxford. Previously, he was Departmental Lecturer in English Language and Literature at the Faculty of English and Pembroke College; Postdoctoral Research Assistant at CLASP: A Consolidated Library of Anglo-Saxon Poetry (an ERC-funded project based at the Oxford English Faculty); and Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Harvard University.
At Oxford, he teaches or has taught Prelims Paper 1 (Introduction to English Language and Literature), Prelims Paper 2 (Early Medieval Literature, c.650–1350), Final Honours School Paper 2 (Literature in English 1350–1550), Course II Paper 1 (Literature in English 650–1100), Course II Paper 4 (The History of the English Language to c.1800), and Course II Paper 5 (The Material Text).
He received his Ph.D. from the University of Granada (2014), with a dissertation on the dating and textual criticism of Beowulf, on the strength of which he gained a two-year Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard University. He is the co-editor, with Leonard Neidorf and Tom Shippey, of Old English Philology: Studies in Honour of R. D. Fulk (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 2016), and one of the contributors to The Dating of Beowulf: A Reassessment (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 2014). His articles on Old and Middle English alliterative poetry have appeared in journals such as Medium Ævum, English Studies, Journal of Germanic Linguistics, Neophilologus, Studia Neophilologica, Notes and Queries, and ANQ. He has also contributed to the Old and Middle English sections of The Year’s Work in English Studies.
His dissertation received the 2013–2014 Extraordinary Doctorate Award. In 2017, he won the ‘Excellence in Knowledge’ Research Award of Grupo Caja Rural (one of Spain’s leading banking groups) for his contributions to medieval English scholarship. These are some of the areas on which he has published peer-reviewed essays:
- The continuity between Old and Middle English alliterative poetry
- Monsters in Beowulf and Anglo-Latin literature
- Old Norse influence on the language of Beowulf
- Humour and heroic legend in Beowulf
- Old English metre and poetics
- The editing of Old English poetical manuscripts
- The dating of Old English verse
- Ælfric of Eynsham’s rhythmical prose
- Old English Philology: Studies in Honour of R. D. Fulk, eds Leonard Neidorf, Rafael J. Pascual, and Tom Shippey. Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2016.
- The Study of Style: Essays in English Language and Literature in Honour of José Luis Martínez-Dueñas, eds Miguel Ángel Martínez-Cabeza, Rafael J. Pascual, Belén Soria, and Rocío G. Sumillera. Granada: EUG, 2019.
- Tradition and Innovation in Old English Metre, ed. Rachel A Burns and Rafael J. Pascual. Leeds: Arc Humanities Press, 2022.
- ‘Prefatory Remarks’, in Andy Orchard (ed.), Metricalities, Studies in Old English Verse, by Eric Stanley, Oxford: CLASP Ancillary Publications, 2022.
- ‘The Fall of the King and the Composition of Neo-Old English Poetry’, in Rachel A. Fletcher, Thijs Porck and Oliver M. Traxel (eds), Old English Medievalism: Reception and Recreation in the 20th and 21st Centuries, Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 2022, pp. 209–222.
- ‘Beowulf 501b and the Authority of Old English Poetic Manuscripts’. Neophilologus 105 (2021): 425–436.
- ‘Hrothgar’s Warhorse and the Audience of Beowulf‘. Medium Ævum 90 (2021): 123–132.
- ‘Beowulf 1889b, Andreas 1221b and Old English Poetic Style’. Studia Neophilologica 93 (2021): 12–23.
- ‘Nicolay Yakovlev’s Theory of Old English Meter: A Reassessment’. Neophilologus: 104 (2020): 245–253.
- “Old English Dithematic Names and the Reliability of Sieversian Metrics,” English Studies 101 (2020): 258-272
- “The Study of Old English Metrical Style,” in Miguel Ángel Martínez-Cabeza, Rafael J. Pascual, Belén Soria, and Rocío G. Sumillera (eds), The Study of Style: Essays in English Language and Literature in Honour of José Luis Martínez-Dueñas, Granada: EUG, 2019, pp. 29-39.
- “Old Norse Influence on the Language of Beowulf: A Reassessment,” Journal of Germanic Linguistics 31 (2019): 298-322 (with L. Neidorf).
- “Bliss’s Rule and Old English Metrics,” ANQ: A Journal of Short Articles, Notes, and Reviews 32 (2019): 209-213.
- “A Possible Emendation of Beowulf 1042a,” Notes & Queries 66.2 (2019): 166-168.
- “Two Possible Emendations of Beowulf 2088a,” Notes & Queries 66.1 (2019): 5-8.
- “Alliterative Metre and Medieval English Literary History,” Atlantis: Journal of the Spanish Association for Anglo-American Studies 40 (2018): 221-230.
- “Oral Tradition and the History of English Alliterative Verse,” Studia Neophilologica 89 (2017): 250-260.
- “Manuscript Evidence and Metrical Authenticity: A Response to Seiichi Suzuki,” Journal of Germanic Linguistics 29.1 (2017): 85-99.
- “Sievers, Bliss, Fulk, and Old English Metrical Theory,” in Old English Philology: Studies in Honour of R. D. Fulk, eds. Leonard Neidorf, Rafael J. Pascual, and Tom Shippey (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2016), 17-33.
- “Old English Metrical History and the Composition of Widsið,” Neophilologus 100 (2016): 289-302.
- “On a Crux in Beowulf: The Alliteration of Finite Verbs and the Scribal Understanding of Metre,” Studia Neophilologica 87 (2015): 171-185.
- “Ælfric’s Rhythmical Prose and the Study of Old English Metre,” English Studies 95 (2014): 803-823.
- “The Language of Beowulf and the Conditioning of Kaluza’s Law,” Neophilologus 98 (2014): 657-673 (with L. Neidorf).
- “Material Monsters and Semantic Shifts,” in The Dating of Beowulf: A Reassessment, ed. Leonard Neidorf (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2014), 202-218.
- “Three-position Verses and the Metrical Practice of the Beowulf Poet,” SELIM 20 (2013-2014): 49-79.
- “J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun: Medieval English Literature and the Early Stages of Sub-creation,” Hither Shore: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Modern Fantasy 8 (2011): 100-113 (with E. Segura).
- Sara M. Pons-Sanz, The Lexical Effects of Anglo-Scandinavian Linguistic Contact on Old English,” SELIM 19 (2012): 183-188.
- Jun Terasawa, Old English Metre: An Introduction,” SELIM 18 (2011): 197-206.