Kresge Library

History Comes Alive Series

medieval saint's bonesRonald C. Finucane will present a lecture on "How to Execute a Corpse: The ‘Trial’ of St. Thomas Becket." on Wednesday, October 18, 2006 at 7 pm in the Oakland Room of the Oakland Center (campus map). The medieval practice of digging up and executing traitors for postmortem punishment was common; Becket's "trial and execution" under Henry VIII will be discussed as an example. Admission is free, but reservations are requested. Please call (248) 370-3511 or e-mail

Professor Finucane is among the foremost medieval scholars of our time, having authored four landmark studies of medieval history. He teaches Medieval, Renaissance and Reformation history. In 2002 he was elected as a fellow of the Royal Historical Society.

Books by Dr. Finucane at the Kresge Library:

  • Miracles and Pilgrims: Popular Beliefs in Medieval England (London and Totowa, 1977, republished in paperback, N.Y., 1995, 1996). A History Book Club selection.
  • Appearances of the Dead: A Cultural History of Ghosts (London, 1982, N.Y., 1984); republished in paperback as Ghosts: Appearances of the Dead & Cultural Transformation (N.Y., 1996). Published in Italy as Fantasmi: Apparizioni e transfigurazioni cultturali (Roma, 1997).
  • Soldiers of the Faith: Crusaders and Moslems at War (London, 1982, N.Y., 1983). A History Book Club selection. Reprinted as a paperback, 2001.
  • The Rescue of the Innocents: Endangered Children in Medieval Miracles (N.Y., 1997); reprinted as a paperback in 2000.

Related Articles*:

  • Scully, Robert E. (2000). The Unmaking of a Saint: Thomas Becket and the English Reformation. The Catholic Historical Review, 86.4, 579-602
  • Alexander, James W (1970). The Becket Controversy in Recent Historiography. The Journal of British Studies, 9.2, 1-26.

Wikipedia Entries

  • Posthumous execution
  • Henry VIII of England
  • English Reformation (Henrician Reformation)
  • Dissolution of the Monasteries
  • Thomas Becket

Related Books:

  • Butler, John (1995). The quest for Becket’s bones : the mystery of the relics of St Thomas Becket of Canterbury. New Haven : Yale University Press.
  • Jones, Thomas (1970). The Becket controversy. New York, Wiley.
  • Barlow, Frank (1986). Thomas Becket. Berkeley : University of California Press.
  • Graves, Michael (2003). Henry VIII : a study in kingship. London ; New York : Pearson Longman.

*Please note, the materials listed below are restricted to use by Oakland Students, Faculty, and Staff (or from a computer located on the Oakland network). Find out why...
Created on 12/12/06 by 11/21/02 by Robert Slater / Last updated on 3/7/18 by Robert Slater
Oakland University

Oakland University, Kresge Library
2200 N Squirrel Rd., Rochester, MI 48309
(248) 370 - 4426