10 Medieval and Renaissance Things to See at the Victoria and Albert Museum

Chest belonging to Elisabetta Gonzaga, 1488. Mantua or Urbino, Italy.

My latest visit to the Victoria and Albert Musuem: 10 Medieval and Renaissance Things to See at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Houses and domestic life in the Viking Age and medieval period

Log houses in the farmstead from Østerdal - Kjetil Bjørnsrud

This thesis examines the representations of houses as physical structures in the Íslendingasögur with specific emphasis on the material aspect of housing culture in the Viking Age and medieval period, as well as the interactions between material culture and text.

Urban Territories in Late Medieval Brussels. Imagined Frontiers and Responsible Institutions

Medieval Brussels Map

This chapter focuses on the spatial analysis of intra-urban territories which existed in late medieval and early modern Brussels (Belgium). By studying their morphological characteristics and origins, I seek to understand their functions within urban society.

‘Appropriate to Her Sex?’ Women’s Participation on the Construction Site in Medieval and Early Modern Europe

city of ladies

Although it is true that the majority of day labourers and craftsmen at any given site were male, there is evidence in many regions of Western Europe that women were commonly employed alongside the men, albeit in the most menial tasks

Imperial Memory and the Charles Bridge: Establishing Royal Ceremony for Future Kings

The Charles Bridge (Karluv Most)

The History behind the Charles Bridge Built during the reigns of Charles IV (1346-1378) and his son, Wenceslas IV (1363-1419), the Charles Bridge crosses the river Vltava in Prague, joining the Old Town on its eastern side, the commercial hub of the city, and the Hradčany and Malá Strana on the west, where the castle and cathedral are located

Fiat Lux: Chartres Cathedral’s Representation of Medieval Culture Seen Through 21st Century Design

Chartres Cathedral

Chartres Cathedral in France exists as a time capsule of its culture, an exhibition of material, religious, and social values, and a testament to the expert craft guild that flourished in the city.

10 Things to See at Southwark Cathedral

High Altar Screen - Southwark cathedral , 1520 AD.

My 10 favourite things about Southwark Cathedral.

How Medieval England looked 200 years ago

How Medieval England looked 200 years ago

Here are fifteen beautiful images of castles, abbeys, cathedrals and other medieval sites around England created around the start of the 19th century

Quiz: Medieval Church Architecture

medieval church architecture

Here are ten questions based on Jon Cannon’s new book Medieval Church Architecture, which offers a guide on how to understand the design of churches in medieval England

Viking Fortress discovered in Denmark

Ground plan of the Fyrkat Viking fortress placed on top of the Vallø ringed fortress. The red lines show the outline of the Vallø excavation © Danish Castle Centre

Archaeologists from The Danish Castle Centre and Aarhus University have made a sensational discovery south of Copenhagen, Denmark. On fields at Vallø Estate, near Køge, they have discovered traces of a massive Viking fortress built with heavy timbers and earthen embankments. The perfectly circular fortress is similar to the famous so-called ‘Trelleborg’ fortresses, which were built by King Harald Bluetooth around AD 980.

The Friars Preachers: The First Hundred Years of the Dominican Order


When Dominic of Caleruega began preaching in southern France in the early 1200s, he would have had no idea of the far reaching influence that the band of men he would attract would leave such a broad and enduring influence on medieval history.

The Royal Palaces of England

Tower of London

Three video lectures by Dr Simon Thurley that links architecture, court life and politics to paint an intimate picture of everyday life in the palaces of the English monarchy.

Castle Building and Its Social Significance in Medieval Hungary

Füzér Castle - Hungary, 13th century.

The history of Hungarian fortification and castle-building has been a subject of Hungarian historiography ever since the 1870s, when Bela Czobor wrote his pioneering study, “Hungary’s Medieval Castles.”

The cultural identity of medieval Silesia: the case of art and architecture

Wrocław, Church of St Mary Magdalene

The cultural identity of architecture and visual arts of the Middle Ages in Silesia can be analyzed in the following frameworks: 1.) the distinct formal features of local artwork; 2.) the specific content expressed through it. Macro factors (the type of materials and their availability) are important in architecture, as are architectural patterns and styles.

Edward Dallingridge: Builder of Bodiam Castle

Bodiam castle - Photo by Antony McCallum

The most contentious issue regarding Bodiam Castle has centred on Dallingridge’s motivation in building the castle. Why would a member of the gentry build such an impressive castle at this particular time in Southern England?

Old St. Paul’s Cathedral of London

Old St Paul's prior to 1561, with intact spire

It was the fourth church to be built on the site on Ludgate Hill and the presence of the shrine of St. Erkenwald made the church a pilgrimage site in medieval times.

The Augustinian Canons in England and Wales: Architecture, Archaeology and Liturgy 1100-1540

Augustinian - Canons Regular

The Augustinian canons remain very much the Cinderellas of British medieval monastic history.

From Legible Text to Magical Pattern: Arabic Inscriptions in Muslim and Christian Spain

From Legible Text to Magical Pattern: Arabic Inscriptions in Muslim and Christian Spain

The Arabic inscriptions in this building fascinated me, and led me down a long path of research that continues today over a decade later. Today I will present some of that research, showing you some of the other structures and objects that are adorned with the same inscription.

Quasicrystals in Medieval Islamic Architecture

Abdullah Khan Madrassah, 16th century

Quasicrystal patterns have remarkable properties: they do not repeat periodically, and have special symmetry—and were not understood in the West until the 1970s.

Sickness in the Nidaros Cathedral?

Sickness in the Nidaros Cathedral?

Up towards the ceiling vault of the Nidaros Cathedral, a number of artworks are hidden from public view. Many of the stone sculptures portray mythological animals and other scary creatures. In such company, one would imagine that human faces were also intended to evoke fear and anguish. Do they depict people with diseases?

Fortified Settlements of the 9th and 10th Centuries ad in Central Europe: Structure, Function and Symbolism


The structure, function(s) and symbolism of early medieval (9th–10th centuries ad) fortified settlements from central Europe, in particular today’s Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic and Slovakia, are examined in this paper.

Bright Beginnings: Jewish Christian Relations in the Holy Land, AD 400-700

Christian Jewish Conversion scene

This paper shows that Christian and Jewish relations in the Holy Land between the fourth and seventh centuries, according to the archaeological evidence, were characterized by peaceful co-existence.

Resonance and the Photographing of Medieval Architecture

medieval architecture

In this essay I aim to convey in text and photographs what it might mean to experience medieval architecture with some degree of connectivity or what Wittgenstein calls, poetically, “resonance.”

Comforting sentences from the warming room at Inchcolm abbey

Inchcolm abbey

Inchcolm abbey has the best-preserved medieval conventual buildings
in Scotland.

Medieval Thought and its Architectural Expression


This dissertation will study the correlation and influences between a series of underlying beliefs and how these find expression in the architecture and setting of place.

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