SUNY College at Old Westbury
PhD, History, University of York, UK (2014)
MA, Medieval Studies, University of York, UK (2010)
BA, Medieval Studies, Mount Holyoke College (2008)
What got you in to history? horse history?
My love for history and horses has been intertwined for as long as I can remember. I’ve loved horses since about age 2… there seems to be no rhyme or reason for this passion (i.e. no one else in my family rides), and family members joke that “horses are in my blood.” At a young age I developed a love for the medieval period facilitated by reading early Irish, English and Norse myths and legends, learning about knights and medieval warfare and my dad bringing me on trips to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Cloisters in NYC.
Who is your favorite historical horse?
Alexander the Great’s Bucephalus [Kat Boniface’s answer, too!]
What are you working on now?
My doctoral research focused on law and administration in late Anglo-Saxon England. My monograph, The Reeve in Late Anglo-Saxon England is in submission with Boydell and Brewer Ltd (forthcoming 2019). In my study of the reeve as an estate manager, I have come across interesting sources on the horse and horse management in late Anglo-Saxon England, which is a project I am also currently researching. Additional research interests include Anglo-Saxon diplomatic, law and administration, Anglo-Saxon culture and prosopography, the horse in antiquity and the Middle Ages, medieval urban history, environmental history of the West from Antiquity through the Middle Ages, the Crusades, Roman Britain and Roman history and literature.
Anything else you’d like to add?
I’ve ridden since age 7 and have done dressage exclusively since about age 15. My love of and interest in dressage was in part sparked by reading Xenophon and learning about Classical and Medieval training of war horses. I have had my current equine partner (and best friend), an Appaloosa gelding named Goodnight Moon, since I was 15 and he was 5.
Chelsea Shields-Más will be presenting “If Wishes were Horses: Building a Picture of Late Anglo-Saxon Equine Management and Care” at our inaugural conference.