Events Calendar

Tara Nummedal: Distinguished Lectures in European History

Thursday, March 07, 2024, 05:15pm - 07:00pm



“The Männel is a Root; It is Said to be Called an Allraune: Magic, Money, and Medicine in a Saxon Mining Town”

Tara Nummedal, Brown University 

Thursday, March 7, 5:15 PM
Van Dyck Hall, Room 301

All are invited to the talk and the reception to follow


Tara Nummedal is the John Nickoll Provost’s Professor of History and a Professor of Italian Studies at Brown University. A historian of Science, Technology, Environment and Medicine, she is the author of Alchemy and Authority in the Holy Roman Empire (University of Chicago Press, 2007), and Anna Zieglerin and the Lion’s Blood: Alchemy and End Times in Reformation Germany (University of Pennsylvania, 2019)

The point of departure in Professor Nummedal's talk is a “superstitious and suspicious” object confiscated from a group of women in a Saxon mining town by local authorities in 1696. The subsequent investigation revealed the many hands that had a role in fashioning, using, and interpreting this object and invites us today to examine a material culture of magic, money, and medicine in early modern Saxony. The fact that the object still sits in the Dresden archive today, meanwhile, offers an opportunity to reflect on the power archival objects in historical research and their surprising power to unsettle and inspire us today.


Flyer: Nummedal_Tara_DistLecEurHist_March_7_2024.pdf