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Virginia Jansen

Virginia Jansen
Professor Emerita
Medieval visual culture, urbanism, and secular building; Gothic architecture, campus planning and architecture.
Research Interests: 

1) English Gothic architecture current project: book, Reform, Kingship, and Building: Ideologies in Architecture from Salisbury Cathedral to Westminster Abbey, c. 1216- 1250, book in progress. The study explores patronage, meaning and ideology of forms, the interaction between architecture and medieval society and its representation.

2) Urban building & secular architecture: a long-range project to examine mainly secular building, including workshops, warehouses, cellars and undercrofts, market halls, granaries, dormitories, etc., but also synagogues and the "stripped-down" churches of the middle-class towns and of the friars. Exploration of the social functions of building types. Book in progress on Medieval Urban Building.

3) Campus planning and architecture, specifically related to the development of the Santa Cruz collegiate plan.  Member of Emeriti Research Group to investigate the early constructed environment of the UCSC campus.

Mailing Address: 

Professor Emerita Virginia Jansen

Cowell Faculty Services 

University of California, Santa Cruz

1156 High Street

Santa Cruz, CA 95064 

Selected Publications: 

"Displacements at Medieval Salisbury, Old Sarum, and Wilton," Studies in Gothic Art, Liber Amicorum Paul Crossley (2 vols. 1. Architecture, Liturgy and Identity, 2. Image, Memory and Devotion), eds. Zoe Opačić and Achim Timmermann, Turnhout: Harvey Miller/Brepols, 2011, vol. 1, pp. 35-46

"Light and Pure: The Templars' New Choir," The Temple Church in London: History, Art and Architecture, eds. David Park and Robin Griffith-Jones, London: Boydell Press, 2010, 45-66 (plates III, 36-43).

"Trading Places: Counting Houses and the Hanseatic 'Steelyard' in King's Lynn," King's Lynn and the Fens: Medieval Art, Architecture and Archaeology, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions for 2005, XXXI, ed. John McNeill, 2008, 66-82

"Cistercian Threads in the Fabric of Canterbury and Salisbury Cathedrals," Perspectives for an Architecture of Solitude: Essays on Cistercians, Art and Architecture in Honour of Peter Fergusson, ed. Terryl N. Kinder, co-edition Turnhout: Brepols (Medieval Church Studies 11) and Cîteaux: Commentarii cistercienses (Studia et Documenta 13), 2004, 341-49

"Deutsche und englische Architektur der Parlerzeit im Vergleich," Parlerbauten: Architektur, Skulptur, Restaurierung, Internationales Parler-Symposium (Schwäbisch Gmünd, 2001), Arbeitsheft 13, Landesdenkmalamt Baden-Württemberg, eds. Richard Strobel and Annette Siefert, Stuttgart: Konrad Theiss Verlag, 2004, 181-88

"Collegiate Controversies at the University of California, Santa Cruz," Chronicle of the University of California, No. 5: Against the Grain: Conflict and Controversy at the University of California, Spring 2002, 99-102

"Henry III's Windsor: Castle-building and Residences, Windsor," Medieval Archaeology, Art and Architecture of the Thames Valley, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions XXV, eds. Laurence Keen and Eileen Scarff, 2002, 95-109

"German Gothic Architecture" and "German Late Gothic Architecture," Medieval Germany: An Encyclopedia, ed. John M. Jeep, New York: Garland Publishing, 2001, 274-78 and 293-95

"George Gilbert Scott and Restoration at Chester Cathedral, 1819-1876," Chester: Medieval Archaeology, Art and Architecture, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions XXII, ed. Alan Thacker, 2000, 81-97

"Attested but Opaque: The Early Gothic East End of St. Werburgh's Abbey, Chester," Chester: Medieval Archaeology, Art and Architecture, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions XXII, ed. Alan Thacker, 2000, 57-65

"Architecture and Community in Medieval Monastic Dormitories," Studies in Cistercian Art and Architecture, V (Cistercian Studies Series 167), ed. Meredith Parsons Lillich, 1998, 58-94

"Salisbury Cathedral and the Episcopal Style in the Early Thirteenth Century," Medieval Art and Architecture at Salisbury, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions XVII, 1996, 32-39

The Dictionary of Art, ed. Jane Turner, New York: Grove's Dictionaries, 1996 "Dormitory," 21: 843-44 "St. Georg, Dinkelsbühl," 8: 905-06 "St. Georg, Nördlingen," 23: 204-05

"The Design and Building Sequence of the Eastern Arm of Exeter Cathedral, c. 1270- 1310: A Qualified Study," Medieval Art and Architecture at Exeter Cathedral, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions Xl, Francis Kelly, ed., 1991, 35- 56

"Medieval 'Service' Architecture: Undercrofts," Medieval Architecture and Its Intellectual Context: Studies in Honour of Peter Kidson, Eric Fernie and Paul Crossley, eds., London: The Hambledon Press, 1990, 73- 79

"Lambeth Palace Chapel, the Temple Choir, and Southern English Gothic Architecture of c. 1215-1240," England in the Thirteenth Century, Proceedings of the 1984 Harlaxton Symposium, ed. W. M. Orrnrod, Grantham (Lincolnshire, England), 1985, 95- 99

"Architectural Remains of King John's Abbey, Beaulieu (Hampshire)," Studies in Cistercian Art and Architecture, II, 1984, 76- 114

"Dying Mouldings, Vertical Springer Blocks, and Hollow Chamfers in Thirteenth- Century Architecture," Journal of the British Archaeological Association, CXXXV, 1982, 35- 54

"Round or Square? The Axial Towers of the Abbey Church of Saint- Riquier," Gesta, XXI/2, 1982, 83- 90

"Superposed Wall Passages and the Triforium Elevation of St. Werburg's, Chester," Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, XXXVIII, 1979, 223- 243 (recipient of Elliott Prize from the Medieval Academy of America, 1981)



HansJörg Rümelin, St. Nicolai in Lüneburg: Bauen in einer norddeutschen Hansestadt, 1405–1840,  (Veröffentlichungen der Historischen Kommission für Niedersachsen und Bremen, 248; Beiträge zur Architektur- und Kulturgeschichte, Leibniz Universität Hannover, 2) Hannover: Hahnsche Buchhandlung, 2009, in Speculum, forthcoming.

Tim Tatton-Brown and John Crook,  Salisbury Cathedral. The Making of a Medieval Masterpiece, London: Scala with Salisbury Cathedral, 2009, in Antiquaries Journal, 91, 2011, 379-80.

Matthew M. Reeve, Thirteenth-Century Wall Painting of Salisbury Cathedral: Art, Liturgy, and Reform (Woodbridge, Suffolk: The Boydell Press [imprint of Boydell & Brewer]. 2008, in The Catholic Historical Review, 96 2010, 524-26

Roberta Gilchrist, Norwich Cathedral Close: The Evolution of the English Cathedral Landscape (Studies in the History of Medieval Religion), Woodbridge, Eng., and Rochester, NY: Boydell and Brewer, 2005, in Speculum, 82, 2007, 990-92

Anthony Quiney, Town Houses of Medieval Britain, New Haven and London: Yale University Press (The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art), 2003, in Speculum, 81, 2006, 261-63

John A.A. Goodall, God's House at Ewelme: Life, Devotion and Architecture in a Fifteenth-Century Almshouse, Aldershot, England, and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2001, in Speculum, 78, 2003, 1297-99

Norbert Nußbaum, German Gothic Church Architecture, New Haven: Yale University Press, 2000, CAA.Reviews at

Nicola Coldstream, The Decorated Style: Architecture and Ornament 1240-1360, London: British Museum Press, 1994, in Speculum, 74, 1999, 143-45

R. Allen Brown, The Architecture of Castles: A Visual Guide, New York: Facts on File, 1985, in Design Book Review, 9, 1986, 50-51

Jean Gimpel, The Cathedral Builders, Salisbury: Machael Russell, 1983, in Design Book Review, 5, 1984, 38-40

Education and Training: 
Ph.D., History of Art, University of California, Berkeley
M.A., History of Art, University of California, Berkeley
History of Art, Freie Universität, Berlin, Germany
A.B., German Language and Literature, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts (Junior year abroad at the Universität Hamburg, Germany)
Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries, London