The Mountbatten Commemorative Lecture

Lectures and Lecturers

The Mountbatten Commemorative Lecture was instituted in memory of the late Admiral of the Fleet the Earl Mountbatten of Burma, K.G., G.C.B., O.M., G.C.S.I., G.C.I.E., G.C.V.O., D.S.O., P.C., F.R.S. who was the Patron of C.U.H.&G.S. until his untimely and shocking death in 1979. He had previously been President of the Cambridge University Society of Genealogists (founded 1954) which merged with C.U.H.&G.S.'s predecessor society of the same name in 1957.

The Minutes Book for 1980–1981 contains this entry:

"The Secretary [Mr Goldstein, Corpus Christi College] agreed to ask Lady Mountbatten for permission to use her father's name for a memorial lecture in remembrance of the late Lord Mountbatten's help as Patron of the Society."

In fact another organisation had already instituted a "Mountbatten Memorial Lecture" and, since Lady Mountbatten wished the name of each such talk to be unique, the "Mountbatten Commemorative Lecture" was established instead. It remains the most important meeting of the year and the lecture has frequently been given by senior members of the College of Arms as shown in the table below. (Some details are incomplete.)

In 1994, the Society was greatly honoured when the Lecture was given by (as he now is) H.R.H. Prince Michael of Kent, G.C.V.O.

The Lecture for the year 1984–1985 was concerned with the genealogy of Lord Mountbatten himself and was delivered in the presence of H.R.H. the Earl of Wessex, K.G., K.C.V.O. who was at that time an undergraduate at Jesus College.

Year Title of Lecture Mountbatten Commemorative Lecturer
2014 "The College of Arms in the Second World War" M.P.D. O'Donoghue, Esq., York Herald of Arms
2013 "Heraldry and Ceremonial in the Holy Roman Empire" B.J.G.A. Kress, Ph.D. (Secretary, 2003–2006), The Warburg Institute
2012 Title to be announced T. Woodcock, Esq., C.V.O., D.L., F.S.A., Garter Principal King of Arms
2011 "Heraldry of York Minster" P.A. Fox, M.A., M.B., B.Chir. (President, 1984–1985)
2010 "The Role of the Lord Lyon" W. David H. Sellar, Esq., B.A. (Oxon:), LL.B. (Edin:), F.R.Hist.S., Lord Lyon King of Arms
2009 "‘Les Grandes d'Espagne ne danseront pas:’ Dukes, ducal lookalikes and the dilemmata of rank in Ancien Régime France" Dr Leonhard Horowski
2008 "The Court of Chivalry in Stuart Heraldry" Dr Vittoria Feola, Université libre de Bruxelles
2007 "The College of Arms in the Eighteenth Century" M.P.D. O'Donoghue, Esq., M.A., Bluemantle Pursuivant of Arms
2006 "Music in Heraldry" H.E. Paston-Bedingfeld, Esq., York Herald of Arms
2005 "The Society of Genealogists Library" Mrs Susan Gibbons
2004 "Early New Zealand Grants of Arms" D.V. White, Esq., M.A., Rouge Croix Pursuivant of Arms
2003 "State Funeral of Sir Winston Churchill" Jack Darrah, Esq.
2002 "Montgomery Heraldry" Dr E. Hugh Montgomery
2001 "Aspects of High State Heraldry" J.P. Brooke-Little, Esq., C.V.O., M.A., F.S.A., F.S.G., lately Clarenceux King of Arms
2000 "Earl Mountbatten and Genealogy" C.R. Humphery-Smith, Esq.
1999 "Back to the Future: European Heraldry after Communism" T.A.H. Wilkinson, M.A., Ph.D., Leverhulme Trust Special Research Fellow, University of Durham
1998 "The Most Noble Order of the Garter" D.H.B. Chesshyre, Esq., L.V.O., M.A., Clarenceux King of Arms
1997 "Nelson's Heraldry" D.V. White, Esq., B.A., M.A., Rouge Dragon Pursuivant of Arms
1996 "Military Heraldry" Col. I.S. Swinnerton, T.D., J.P., D.L., President of the Federation of Family History Societies
1995 Sir Conrad Swan, K.C.V.O., Ph.D., M.A., F.S.A., Garter Principal King of Arms
1994 H.R.H. Prince Michael of Kent, K.C.V.O.
1993 "The Bastards …" J.P. Brooke-Little, Esq., C.V.O., M.A., F.S.A., F.H.S., Norroy and Ulster King of Arms
1992 "Polish Heraldry" C.M.J.F. Swan, Esq., C.VO., Ph.D., M.A., F.S.A., York Herald and Registrar of the College of Arms
1991 "The Baronies of East Anglia" John Norton, Esq., Treasurer of Norfolk Heraldry Society
1990 "The Work of the College of Arms" F.S. Andrus, Esq., L.V.O., M.A., Beaumont Herald of Arms Extraordinary
1989 "Some Thoughts on the Origins of Heralds" J.P. Brooke-Little, Esq., C.V.O., M.A., F.S.A., F.H.S., Norroy and Ulster King of Arms
1988 "Quinque saltus heraldici – Five Heraldic Leaps" P.Ll. Gwynn-Jones, Esq., L.V.O., Lancaster Herald
1987 "European Armorials and Rolls – Some Thoughts and Comparisons" C.J. Holyoake, Esq.
1986 "Garter Knights and Officers of the Order of the Garter" Sir A. Colin Cole, K.C.V.O., T.D., F.S.A., Garter Principal King of Arms
1985 "The Genealogy of the Earl Mountbatten of Burma" C.R. Humphery-Smith, Esq.
1984 "The Work and Records of the College of Arms" J.P. Brooke-Little, Esq., C.V.O., M.A., F.S.A., F.H.S., Norroy and Ulster King of Arms
1983 "J.H. Round" Dr D. Stephenson
1982 "Arthurian Heraldry" Michael Maclagan, Esq., Richmond Herald
1981 "The Work of the College of Arms" F.S. Andrus, Esq., Lancaster Herald

For brevity, years are labelled by the calendar year forming the latter part of the academic year. Thus, the 1999 Mountbatten Commemorative Lecture took place in the academic year 1998-1999. Where the Mountbatten Commemorative Lecture took place in the Michaelmas Term, the year is in italic font. Thus the 1985 Mountbatten Commemorative Lecture took place on November 30th, 1984.


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