Specializations: Early medieval music and its cultural history (800-1200); Church history, espcially of monastic and cathedral communities; Gregorian chant; medieval Germany; Anglo-Saxon England; liturgy and liturgical commentary; manuscript studies; intellectual history; hagiography; sacred music to the present day.
About: Henry Parkes is a graduate of the University of Oxford (BA Hons. in Music, 2007) and of the University of Cambridge (MPhil in Musicology, 2008; PhD in Musicology, 2012). Prior to coming to Yale in 2014, he was a postdoctoral research fellow at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, during which time he also served as a visiting lecturer at the University of Cambridge and at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Holding a dual appointment with the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, an interdisciplinary center for the study of music, worship, and the arts, Professor Parkes has broad research and teaching interests which traverse the fields of musicology, history, theology, and liturgy. His first book, The Making of Liturgy in the Ottonian Church (CUP, 2015), narrates a history of religious life in early medieval Germany by means of its surviving liturgical books (among them the ‘Mainz Troper’, a famous tenth-century music book, and the ritual encyclopedia known as the Romano-German Pontifical). His current research explores the notion of musical authority in early medieval Europe, with particular reference to Pope Gregory the Great and the developing concept of Gregorian chant.
Parkes currently serves as a council member of the Henry Bradshaw Society. He has an FRCO diploma in organ, and has held organist positions at a number of the UK’s leading Anglican choral foundations; until his move to Yale he regularly shared the concert platform with the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
The Making of Liturgy in the Ottonian Church: Books, Music and Ritual in Mainz 950-1050, Cambridge Studies in Medieval Life and Thought 100 (Cambridge, 2015)
“Biblical Readings for the Night Office in Eleventh-Century Germany: Reconciling Theory and Practice,” in Reading the Bible in the Middle Ages, ed. Jinty Nelson and Damien Kempf (London, 2015)
“Questioning the Authority of Vogel and Elze’s Pontificale Romano-Germanique,” in Understanding Medieval Liturgy: Essays in Interpretation, ed. Helen Gittos and Sarah Hamilton (Aldershot, 2015)
“St Edmund Between Liturgy and Hagiography,” in Bury St Edmunds and the Norman Conquest, ed. Tom Licence (Woodbridge, 2014), pp. 131-59