Leonardo Bruni’s aim in the De militia (ca. 1420) was to co-opt the most glamorous of medieval ideals, the ideal of chivalry, and to reinterpret it in terms of Greco-Roman ideals of military service.
When people first start learning about the Middle Ages, one of the first concepts they are told was that medieval society was divided into three groups – those who pray, such as priests and monks; those who work, like farmers; and those who fight, the warrior class. How did this idea get started and what does it actually mean?
This week, we have the retelling of the epic Arthurian romance of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight in this 1984 fantasy reboot.
Although a medieval person vacationing in the twenty-first century would no doubt be overjoyed at things like electricity, modern transportation, and flushing toilets, there are a lot of things they probably wouldn’t appreciate about our time.
This essay clarifies the ways in which a civic spectacle such as Venice’s lavish celebration of the Purification, the Feste delle Marie, functioned as an opportunity to articulate alternatives to the dominant understanding of the social order.
This thesis discusses whether berserkir really went berserk.
From its positive attributes, the dog became a Christian symbol for conscientious prelates and preachers who guarded the community from the devil and applied the dog’s curative properties to heal the community of sin.
There was surprisingly little discussion of the ten commandments in the period between Augustine of Hippo (d. 430) and the schools that grew up in twelfth-century Paris, which specialised in teaching the Bible and theology.
In a world in which contraception was less preventative than after the fact, and abortion was an uncertain practice fraught with danger, might assault have been seen as a viable method of ending an unwanted pregnancy?
Focusing on the types of clothing imported into the realm, and using information from the royal accounts and tithes of a number of ports in the Bay of Biscay, I focus on issues of production and consumption in late medieval Castile and what this information tells us about the economic structures of the realm and on the exaggerated consumption of foreign cloth by certain groups within Castilian society.
Medieval views of both divine goodness and the doctrine of hell are examined and shown to be incompatible with our best understandings of goodness. The only manner in which God could be good to those in hell – by permitting their continued existence – is not sufficient to outweigh ‘the dreadful pains of eternal fire’.
Icelandic women during the Viking Age managed households, raised their children, tended to the animals, and wove the cloth, along with a host of other duties overlooked by their male counterparts.
This thesis explores the relationship between proto-democracy, multiculturalism, and state formation. In the introduction, I express the desire to ascertain how legal multiculturalism on the Isle of Man could be viewed as a product of the shared protodemocratic character of the Irish and the Norse legal traditions.
This paper surveys the legal tradition that links Magna Carta with the modern concepts of the rule of law and the limits on government.
In this essay I address a little-known chapter in the lengthy history of crimes against (nonhuman) animals. My focus is not crimes committed by humans against animals, as such, but a practical outcome of the seemingly bizarre belief that animals are capable of committing crimes against humans
‘I have loved you for so long, and I [still] love you; why do you not give your consent’ – these words, spoken inside a church, were at the centre of a case of sexual harassment from the summer of 1486.
Justice Frederick H. Blume, attorney and long-time Justice of the Wyoming Supreme Court, single-handedly translated Justinian’s Code and Novels in the early twentieth century. His is the only English translation of the Code to have been made from the Latin version accepted as most authoritative.
Need advice on how to keep your teeth clean and shiny white? Medieval writers have got you covered!
The formulation of a general and comprehensive law of treason by the English government in the mid-fourteenth century allowed northerners to impose harsh penalties on those who offended them most grievously.
In this Master thesis, my aim is to investigate, compare and discuss the practice of dealing with the dead and their war gear during the aftermath of a battle or an armed engagement.
Traversing the Globe through Illuminated Manuscripts, on view January 26–June 26, 2016 at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, offers the opportunity to explore the strong connections between Europe and the broader world during the Middle Ages and Renaissance.
This week we take a look at ten milestones in medieval law and tell the case of a corrupt archbishop. You can also get five recipes for medieval toothpaste, and 23 uses for rosemary.
Historians have long puzzled over why this missile weapon—clearly superior to its alternative, the crossbow—was monopolized by the English for so long