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Archives for June 2013

Duns Scotus: A Brief Introduction to his Life and Thought

Duns Scotus, from his early years as a philosopher and theologian was confronted with this problem from within Aristotelian philosophy. And he gave a novel answer to it, one which differed from the Thomistic account.

International Medieval Congress to look at pleasure in the Middle Ages

The world’s medievalists are at the University of Leeds as the 20th annual International Medieval Congress begins tomorrow.

A Feast for Aesculapius: Historical Diets for Asthma and Sexual Pleasure

Throughout Western history, people of all social classes have insisted that particular foods and drinks affected their bodies-purifying or contaminating them, and stimu­lating or tranquilizing their sensual spirits.

Beowulf Is Not God Cyning

By understanding the etymology of the Old English cyning, and by recognizing the poet’s use of Scyld as the model for a good king, we can see that each of the three uses of the phrase ‘Þæt wæs god cyning’ has a different meaning…

Riga Castle in Latvia damaged by fire

Last week’s fire at Riga Castle has left the Latvian landmark with heavy damage, including the destruction of the roof and several rooms.

The Secret Lives of Medieval Manuscripts

Six hundred years ago Christians who went to church and they learned to to destroy manuscripts.

Locating the Franciscans within the Cities of Thirteenth Century Northern Italy Using the Chronicles of Salimbene de Adam

In the beginning this order, the Franciscans, disdained the ownership of any material goods, rejected any contact with the developing commercial society of the communes and disapproved of papal privileges.

Health and Illness in the Angevin dynasty of the Hungarian Kingdom

‘All the dresses were soaked wet by the sacred blood spilled, inasmuch it resembled an immense overflow of water. He even didst show us apart from these the cut four fingers of her royal highness and the locks of their beloved sons, which were parted from their bodies by Felicián’s sword.’

Gunnarr and the Snake Pit in Medieval Art and Legend

While many readers of medieval literature are likely to be familiar with the narrative motif of the snake pit, and even associate it with the legend of Gunnarr Gjúkason, there are probably not many, apart from Old Norse specialists, who would know the rest of his story.

A Pedagogical Trebuchet: A Case Study in Experimental History and History Pedagogy

The case study presented here shows how a project in experimental history applied to a medieval trebuchet was used to solve just such problems by encouraging historical thinking, hypothesis testing of a historical problem, and reinforcing traditional primary source research.

Keywords and Co-Occurrence Patterns in the Voynich Manuscript: An Information-Theoretic Analysis

The Voynich manuscript has remained so far as a mystery for linguists and cryptologists.

Medieval Pet Names

What did people in the Middle Ages name their dogs and cats?

Exploring Medieval European Society with Chess

More specifically, it provides educators with a classroom-tested lesson activity for teaching medieval European society content using the game of chess by providing background information on the history of chess, a rationale for including chess in the classroom, and step-by-step procedures to infuse this activity when the topic of feudalism is covered.

Lamentation, History, and Female Authorship in Anna Komnene’s Alexiad

Anna’s laments are grounded in a Greek tradition of female lamentation and reflect her deliberate decision to add a female voice along side the historian’s conventional dispassion.

Erotic Dreams and Nightmares from Antiquity to the Present

Do erotic dreams result from divine intercession, an immoral life, or recent memories? Are they products of the self for which the individual dreamer may be held responsible? Or are they determined by a force majeure such as original sin, or human physiology?

Problems with Continuity: Defining the Middle Ages for Medievalism Studies

Indeed, defining the Middle Ages gave rise to and continues to fuel much of the broader debate over whether and how to divide the past into periods.

Negotiation and warfare: The Hospitallers of Rhodes around and after the Fall of Constantinople (1426–1480)

At the beginning of the 14th century, the Order of the Hospital, unlike the Temple, had managed to safeguard its image as a religious military order still able to pursue its mission to fight against the enemies of the Christian faith.

From the Persecuting to the Protective State? Jewish Expulsions and Weather Shocks from 1100 to 1800

Violence against Jews was caused by many factors, but we build on the common claim advanced by historians that Jews were convenient scape-goats for social and economic ills.

Give us this day our daily bread: A study of Late Viking Age and Medieval Quernstones in South Scandinavia

Porridge and bread were by far the two most important elements in the Viking Age and medieval diet.

Flavor Pairing in Medieval European Cuisine: A Study in Cooking with Dirty Data

In this work, we collect a new data set of recipes from Medieval Europe before the Columbian Exchange and investigate the flavor pairing hypothesis historically.

Ryurik Rostislavich (d. 1208?): the Unsung Champion of the Rostislavichi

One of the most active champions of the Rostislavichi fortunes, whose political career the chroniclers record for some fifty years, was Rostislav’s son Ryurik. His career, however, was one of political turmoil.

Neonatal care and breastfeeding in medieval Persian literature

The present article is a review of the Jorjani’s teachings on the neonatal care, breastfeeding, weaning and teething along with comparisons between the Treasure and modern medicine in this regard.

The Heavy Plough and the Agricultural Revolution in Medieval Europe

This research tests the long-standing hypothesis, put forth by Lynn White, Jr., that the adoption of the heavy plough in northern Europe led to increased population density and urbanization

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