The Medieval Magazine (Volume 2 Issue 23)

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Collaborative team projects yield Gold-Medal-worthy results, joust with champions at Hampton Court Palace, take a tour of the Getty Museum’s new manuscript exhibit “Things Unseen,” and watch Viking experts test out a new game!

BOOK REVIEW: A Million Years in a Day – Greg Jenner

A Million Years in A Day by Greg Jenner

Want to know how daylight savings time started? Who really invented the modern toilet? Were the Vikings really filthy Barbarians? Did Early Modern people think bathing was dangerous? This book aims to answer these questions (and many more!) as Greg Jenner takes us from sun up to sun down, through a million years in one day.

Did Henry VIII Suffer from Head Trauma?

Henry VIII

By Danièle Cybulskie It’s a question that pretty much anyone looking at the arc of his life ends up asking: what happened to Henry VIII? From a hugely-admired prince, to a widely-feared king, the transformation in Henry’s behaviour and outlook would seem like the stuff of fiction, but for the fact that history bears out […]

Book Talk: A Conversation with Guy Gavriel Kay

Banner - US Cover Children of Earth and Sky

Set in a parallel Renaissance world, two major religions, the Jaddites who worship the sun, and the Asharites who worship the stars, struggle amidst the backdrop of court politics, murder, espionage, faith and family.

Places to See: London in 7 Drinks

Wine, enjoyed the medieval way...out of a coconut! shell! Photo by Medievalists.net

Can you tell history through a pint? Or a cup of coffee perhaps? According to Dr. Matthew Green you can. The historian and author turned his passion for history into Unreal City Audio: London Walking Tours.

How to Make Medieval Artists’ Tools

Cennino Cennini, Madonna and Child with Angels and Saints, Galleria Moretti

by Danièle Cybulskie If there’s one thing medieval people loved, it was writing educational treatises. Sometimes, these were a little on the fantastic side – like bestiaries or travel literature – but other times, they were extremely useful how-to manuals. I particularly love the how-to manuals because they can teach us so much about medieval […]

BOOK REVIEW: The Anglo-Saxons in 100 Facts by Martin Wall

Book: The Anglo Saxons in 100 Facts

Looking for a “historical beach read” this summer? Look no further. Martin Wall’s latest book, The Anglo-Saxons in 100 Facts brings pre-conquest England to life in a chronological series full of interesting, humorous and gruesome facts about the Anglo Saxons.

Isabelle of Angoulême: Jezebel of the Middle Ages?

Isabella of Angoulême's Tomb Effigy, Fontevraud Abbey

Matthew Paris (d.1259) said in one of his chronicles of the history of England that, ‘she ought to be called a wicked Jezebel, rather than Isabel.’

The Herbal Cures of Hildegard von Bingen – was she right?

A 12th century depiction of Hildegard of Bingen

There is a 1 in 10,000,000 chance that Hildegard von Bingen was just making up her list of medical cures based on herbs and plants.

Did Medieval People Believe in King Arthur?

By Danièle Cybulskie If you’ve ever had your doubts that King Arthur was a real, living, breathing human being at some point, you’re not alone. Despite the many, many histories that “prove” that Arthur was definitely this or that – tenacious Briton, Roman military man, leader of hunky Sarmatians – the evidence is pretty thin. […]

Becoming a Prince: Prince Arthur’s early life and his training to be king

prince arthur

Within a month of his birth on 20 September 1486, Prince Arthur was separated from his family and living in a nursery at Farnham Palace in Surrey.

The Medieval Magazine (Volume 2 Issue 21)

The Medieval Magazine Volume 2, Issue 21

This issue looks at Point Rosee, The Battle of the Bastards, remedies for infertility, and much more! Inside this issue: About the Festival of Archaeology There’s a Lot of Dirt: How Archaeology Works How the Battle of the Bastards Squares with Medieval History Vikings Unearthed: A response to the Point Rosee Documentary Lady Arabella Stuart Medieval Tournament […]

Anglo-Saxon Motte and Bailey Castle for Sale

Anglo-Saxon Motte and Bailey Castle for Sale

This Anglo-Saxon motte and bailey is located on a smallholding in the village of Ewyas Harold, Herefordshire and has recently been put on the market. It is of considerable interest because it was one of only three sites constructed prior to the Norman conquest.

Can you move in armour? An Experiment in Mythbusting

Drawing Copyright Nicholas Baptiste

In this video we have recreated the deeds of the famous knight Jean le Maingre, known as Boucicaut, which were put in writing in the early 15th century.

Medieval Mysteries: Miscellanies and Mix Tapes

Compact_audio_cassette_3

By Danièle Cybulskie In thinking this week about the medieval mysteries we’ll never solve, it struck me that one of the most fun questions that I – and everyone else who loves medieval books – ponder is why the particular stories in them are put together the way they are. Most medieval manuscripts that aren’t […]

The Medieval Magazine (Volume 2 Issue 20)

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This issue looks at the hit musical Hamilton, medieval expressions of same-sex love in light of Pride, the anniversary of the Battle of Hastings, medieval “friend requests”, travel and much more!

Travel Tips for the Medieval Pilgrim

medieval travel tips

William Wey, a 15th century pilgrim, gives his travel tips for those going to medieval Jerusalem.

Book Review: Assassin’s Creed: Trial by Fire

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By Danièle Cybulskie Assassin’s Creed: Trial by Fire, a compilation of the first five comic books in the new Assassin’s Creed series, comes from the same writers that brought us the immensely popular Kill Shakespeare, a comic series that playfully wreaked havoc with Shakespeare’s canon, while drawing in a whole new audience to his plays. Written […]

Medieval Cooking Tips

Cracking an egg - photo by Daniel Novta / Flickr

From boiling vegetables to smelly pots, here are 10 medieval cooking tips from the 10th century.

Christine the Astonishing

Christina the Astonishing from 1630 Fasti Mariani calendar of saints Image by Patrick3Lopez

By Danièle Cybulskie This week, I read the story of Christine the Astonishing for the first time (in Medieval Writings on Female Spirituality, translated by Elizabeth Spearing), and it struck me that while it’s meant to be the story of a holy woman’s life, it also gives us an intimate look at what was likely […]

The Medieval Magazine (Volume 2 Issue 19)

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Welcome to our first issues under new editors Sandra Alvarez and Danielle Trynoski. We’re bringing you a bigger, better issue, with more features, articles, books and travel than ever before.

How to Cheat on a Virginity Test

Lovers in Bed - from British Library MS Sloane 2435 f. 9v

During the Middle Ages a woman’s virginity was highly prized. A lady was expected not to have sex until she was married, and that her wedding night would be a kind of test to show that she had remained ‘pure’. However, if she did have sex before, was there a way she could cheat on this test?

The Fantastical Shoemaker and the Head of Death

Detail from list of shoemakers by Niccolò di Giacomo da Bologna

By Danièle Cybulskie This week, I came across one of those great medieval stories that is just too good not to share: “The Fantastical Shoemaker of Constantinople”. This twisted tale comes from Walter Map’s twelfth-century miscellany De Nugis Curialium or Courtiers’ Trifles, and all quotes you’ll find below come from Richard Sowerby‘s reader-friendly translation in the great collection […]

The Poetry of Trauma: On the Crécy Dead

Edward III Counting the Dead at Crécy

By Danièle Cybulskie Time and again, I’ve heard medieval knights referred to as “killing machines”, bred for a lifetime of battle and destruction. Difficult as it may be, it’s critical to for us to remember that every one of the men mired in mud and blood on the battlefield was not a machine, but a […]

The Medieval Magazine: Jeanne de Valois (Volume 2 Issue 18)

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From a French queen to the descendent of a Scottish king, this issue covers a lot of ground. Read about magic tricks, advice for pregnant women, Thomas Becket’s elbow and more.

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