The R.W. Southern Prize is awarded annually to an excellent paper by a graduate student or young scholar (having completed the Ph.D. after June 1, 2019). Due to a generous donation from an anonymous benefactor, this prize of $250 bears the name of the great medieval historian, who was an early supporter of the Colloquium and its mission. 

In the early 1970s, as Professor Edward King was exploring the possibility that the University of the South might host an annual conference in medieval studies, several Sewanee alumni were living and doing graduate work in Oxford, including at St. John's College, of which the distinguished medievalist R.W. Southern had recently become President. On hearing of Dr. King's project, Dr. Southern expressed immediate and keen interest. He was especially supportive of a central concept of Dr. King's: opportunities for young, upcoming scholars to present their work within a relatively informal, encouraging, collaborative context. In his own influential, indeed transformative, work on St Anselm, Dr. Southern had emphasized just that aspect of Anselm's life and thought: "master" with "student" in mutuality of friendship and colloquy. By the time the Sewanee Medieval Colloquium had established itself, and Sir Richard was fêted at its tenth anniversary session, he expressed sheer delight in its Anselmian spirit. It seems therefore particularly fitting that an R.W. Southern Prize should be awarded annually in Sir Richard's memory to a graduate or young scholar. 

Read more about Sir Richard Southern. 

If you would like to apply to the Southern Prize, simply let the conference organizers know what you submit your abstract and/or your full paper to your respondent. To be considered fully, papers must be submitted to respondents by the posted deadline


 Past Winners:

  • 2019: Anne Spear, University of Mississippi
  • 2018: Matthew Aiello, University of Pennsylvania
  • 2017: Daniel Davies, University of Pennsylvania; Elizaveta Strakhov, Marquette University
  • 2016: Samuel Barry, University of Manchester
  • 2015: Lindy Brady, University of Mississippi