800th Anniversary of Council of Oxford may be marked by the Church of England

From The Times, 13 July 2021:

The Church of England plans to offer its “repentance” over antisemitic church laws that forced Jewish people to wear “a badge of shame” and led to the expulsion of them from medieval England.

Next year will mark the 800th anniversary of the 1222 Synod of Oxford, sometimes known as “the Magna Carta of canon law”.

The meeting at Osney Abbey, which was near Oxford, is most famous as the day that English church leaders declared St George’s Day a holiday. But they also implemented decrees from Rome that forced Jews to wear clothing to distinguish them from Christians, to ensure that no Christian could marry a Jew by mistake.

It has been described as a precursor to the laws that forced Jews in Nazi Germany to wear yellow Star of David badges.

The decrees from Rome, set out in the Fourth Council of the Lateran in 1215, also disqualified Jewish people from holding public office. A written question submitted to bishops during the Church of England’s General Synod this week noted: “Next year is the 800th anniversary of the 1222 Synod of Oxford, the ‘Magna Carta’ of English canon law, which implemented some of the most egregious antisemitic decrees of the Fourth Lateran Council, such as the law that Jews wear a badge of shame to isolate them from the Christian public around them.

“These laws] heightened antisemitic feeling and led to the first nationwide expulsion of all Jews from England in 1290.”

Jewish people were barred from living in England until 1657.

Jacob Vince, a lay synod member from Chichester, said: “In light of rapidly worsening antisemitism in the UK in recent months, might the 800th anniversary next year be an opportune moment for the Church of England to consider making a formal break with these historic prejudices . . . with a view to conducting a fitting service of corporate repentance?”

The Bishop of Lichfield, the Right Rev Dr Michael Ipgrave, said: “The Archbishop’s office has indeed received a letter proposing a service that might offer an act of repentance at the 800th anniversary of the Synod of Oxford and its antisemitic laws . . . We are exploring the idea of such a service to be planned in conjunction with the Council of Christians and Jews.”

Lucille Dweck commissioned to paint Licoricia

Lucille Dweck has been commissioned to paint Licoricia with Henry III in the Great Hall in Winchester, on the basis that a picture is worth a thousand words.

Educated at St Martins and Byam Shaw, her artistic career has included being:-
Winner of several art competitions including ‘Pacesetters’ in Peterborough Museum, My Art Space, NYAXE Gallery NY, and the‘Refresh Art Award’ in 2019.   She has been the Artist in residence at the London Hospital, and has mural commissions at West Middlesex Hospital, Central Foundation School for boys, The Frame Factory (Talbot Road), De Lucia Restaurant (Bond Street), and The Mayfair Club (Mayfair).  She also has portrait commissions and has taught at Byam Shaw School of Art and other arts schools.  She was included in the recently-published book ‘Portraits for NHS Heroes’. 

We hope that the painting will illustrate our book and be used in exhibitions and educational material.

June 2021 newsletter

Dear Supporter

Since our last newsletter in December, we have made exciting progress, both in our financial goals and in practically implementing the project.

Fundraising

Of our £150,000 target, we have now raised 90% – over £135,000!  We are pushing hard to raise the final £15,000, by which time we will have fully-funded the statue project, the Key Stage 3 lessons, the book, the exhibition to accompany the unveiling, and a leaflet to be distributed about the statue at Winchester tourist venues.  We will then proceed to raise funds for Phase 2 of the project detailed below.

We have now reached over 100 donors on Just Giving with nearly £15,000 having been raised through this channel.  In addition, many individuals and trusts have donated directly.

We send a big thank you to our many generous donors and are very pleased to acknowledge those from our local Christian communities including the Chapter of Winchester Cathedral, St Peter’s Catholic Church and Winchester Quakers alongside support from the Council of Christians and Jews.   

Statue

The life-sized statue, a modified version of the maquette, has now been sent to the foundry for casting into bronze, after the committee recently visited Ian Rank-Broadley’s studio and approved it.  Ian has done a fantastic job and we are very much looking forward revealing it to you – but we’re going to save this excitement to the unveiling.

The latter has now been pushed back to the spring of 2022 as refurbishment works will be taking place at the Discovery Centre and it will be closed in the winter of 2021.  The silver lining is that the days will be longer and warmer than in late 2021 so we will have a better prospect of good weather.

Book

Rebecca Abrams has pulled out all the stops in writing a really excellent and engaging book, which we hope to publish early in 2022. 

We are currently working on its illustrations.  We hope to bring the thirteenth century to life through the commissioning of two illustrations by Lucille Dweck, who featured in the recently-published ‘Portraits for NHS Heroes’. 

We have a doodle poll active to help us determine the book title.  This can be found on https://doodle.com/poll/c8gyc36683n8qurx?utm_source=poll&utm_medium=link (please copy and paste the link if required).  You will see a “+” to add a new participant and you can then add your name before voting.  Do please vote to let us know your views.

Exhibition

We are working with the Hampshire Cultural Trust (HCT) to plan a pop-up exhibition to accompany the unveiling, to be located outside the Discovery Centre near the statue.

Lessons

Hampshire County Council (HCC) will be presenting its Key Stage 3 lessons at a conference in July and then publishing them over the summer in order to release them to its schools in time for the autumn term of 2021.  We are already receiving interest in these from schools far and wide.

Collaborations

We have been working closely with national organisations such as the Migration Museum, the Holocaust Education Trust, and the Jewish Museum, London, to hone our educational work.  We understand from the Migration Museum that Licoricia is to be featured in the Edexel exam syllabus.  Locally, in addition to HCT and HCC, we are working with Winchester College and Hampshire Open Days.  It is obvious that there is a huge receptivity about this period and its medieval Jewish community, as well as our positive messages for today about diversity, education and female achievement.

Future plans

Phase 2 of the project includes creating Key Stage 1 and 2 lessons for children alongside other educational resources, putting up an information board outside the Discovery Centre, creating a significant exhibition for 2023 and potentially also arranging an academic seminar. 

Thank you

We continue to receive so much goodwill around the project and are spurred on with your enthusiasm.  Thank you for your continued support.  If you or your friends and contacts are able to help move us the last few yards, do donate either directly or through Just Giving  (https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/Licoricia) which can be accessed via our website http://www.Licoricia.org.

We look forward to keeping in touch.

With best wishes from

The Licoricia of Winchester Team

Thank you to the Chapter of Winchester Cathedral

We are really delighted that the Winchester Cathedral Chapter has donated to the Appeal, with the following words ‘In support of this important and significant sculpture of Licoricia and her son and the contribution that this will make to the heritage and common life of our city and county’.