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“The Beauty of the Bough-Hung Banks”: William Morris in the Thames Landscape

Sarah Leonard, University of Delaware, Junior Fellow 2018–2019

I completed the bulk of the writing for my project, which has left me well placed to defend in the next academic year. I have focused particularly on synthesizing my fieldwork and archival research with deep investigation of the history and environment of the English countryside and the river Thames. The Dumbarton Oaks collection was particularly helpful as I worked through the argument at the center of my work: that Morris’s fabric patterns must be understood as highly specific responses to the rural landscapes of the river Thames and its tributaries. In the autumn I also prepared a workshop on landscape history and fieldwork in the humanities, and a paper on the imperial contexts of William Morris’s indigo for presentation at the North American Victorian Studies Association annual conference.