Well, at least for the children anyway.  Last week I visited the Salford Diocesan Archives in  Manchester and the Talbot Library in Preston.  They both have an excellent selection of secondary material, including, in the case of the Talbot Library, quite large sections on the religious orders and Mariological works.   The Talbot library is housed in a beautiful old building and is lovely and warm.  It was a very interesting couple of days.

With the children being at home it has been much harder to get work done.  I’ve spent a couple  of evenings going through the sources on EEBO again, saving the references to potentially useful material in EndNote.  I’ve been reading Kevin Sharpe on ‘Selling the Tudor Monarchy’, and fortunately his chapter on Mary doesn’t tackle all the sources that I’ve found and treats them chronologically, whereas I’m intending to tackle them thematically.   But I must admit that I was a little bit alarmed when I first looked at the chapter and thought that I might be about to lose another PhD topic.

I’ve also been looking for the accounts for the Franciscan and Dominican orders from the time of Mary, but no-one seems to know if they exist.  I’ve not managed to find any reference to them in any of the secondary material that I’ve read.

I have a long list of things that need doing before I see my supervisor again in a couple of weeks, and I’ve done quite a few of them but by no means all.  My plan for tonight is to look at the list again and sort out an action plan until the next meeting.  There’s absolutely no way I’m going to get through it all, so I need to prioritise.