Naomi Speakman

Curator of Late Medieval Europe

Department: Britain, Europe and Prehistory


+44 (0)20 7323 8467

Naomi Speakman is the curator for late medieval European collections, and arms and armour. She has responsibility for the non-ceramic material made between circa 1050-1500. Her current research interests are gothic ivory carving, late medieval metalwork and the history of collecting. Prior to joining the British Museum Naomi has worked at Bonhams and the V&A, she is currently undertaking a PhD at the Courtauld Institute of Art on the 19th century collecting of the British Museum’s medieval ivories.

Current projects

Improving collection database records and adding images for the following areas: rings, brooches, ivory carvings.

The British Museum’s Collection of Gothic Ivory Carvings, AHRC-funded Collaborative Doctoral Award (with the Courtauld Institute of Art), due for completion Autumn 2018.

External fellowships/ honorary positions/ membership of professional bodies

Member of the British Archaeological Association

Recent publications

N. Speakman, catalogue entries in, M. Bagnoli, H. A. Klein, C. Griffith Mann, and J. Robinson (eds), Treasures of Heaven: Saints, Relics, and Devotion in Medieval Europe , (London: The British Museum Press, 2011).

L. de Beer and N. Speakman, ‘A Question of Style’, Apollo, (May, 2013), pp. 66-71.

N. Speakman, ‘Gothic Ivory Carvings at the British Museum’, The Sculpture Journal, Volume 23, Issue 1 (2014), pp. 93-94.

N. Speakman & L. de Beer, Object in Focus: The Lacock Cup, (London: The British Museum Press, 2014).

N. Speakman, ‘Introduction’, in N. Speakman, J. Robinson and de Beer and K McWilliams (eds), The British Museum Citole: New Perspectives (London: The British Museum Press, 2015), pp. v-ix.

N Speakman, ‘‘A Great Harvest’: The Acquisition of William Maskell’s Ivory Collection by the British Museum’, in C. Yvard, ed., Gothic Ivory Sculpture: Content and Contexts, (London: Courtauld Books Online, 2017), pp. 111-124.

N. Speakman, ‘Memento Mori Beads: Collecting Histories and Contexts’, in S. Perkinson, ed., The Ivory Mirror: The Art of Mortality in Renaissance Europe (Brunswick: Bowdoin College of Art and Yale University Press, 2017), pp. 209-228.”