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For the want of Emma: What if the Vikings had won the Battle of Stamford Bridge?

If you could alter history, change one subtle event, what would you pick? For a Viking fan, the answer might be as simple as it is iconic.

Searching for Brunanburh: The Yorkshire Context of the ‘Great War’ of 937

The location of Brunanburh, however, is still an unsolved mystery. For the last 300 years or more, antiquarians and historians have puzzled over the question. Over thirty sites have been suggested, but none has passed rigorous scrutiny, let alone gained general acceptance.

Medieval Geopolitics: War in the Medieval Mind

How was war understood in late medieval culture?

Shieldmaidens in the Gesta Danorum (I-IX): The collective literary imaginary and history

In this thesis, I will investigate whether shieldmaidens’ symbolic meaning in the collective imaginary had originates in a timeless heritage or whether they are the re-elaboration of specific figures.

Shock and Awe: The use of terror as a psychological weapon during the Bruce-Balliol Civil War, 1332-38

Ravaging land, burning crops, stealing livestock and killing peasants: this is how war was fought in the middle ages. These tactics constituted a form of warfare that minimised the dangers of meeting an enemy in battle, while maximising the destruction that could be inflicted upon the opposition. 

The Failure of Magna Carta

The Introduction to the Medieval Warfare magazine issue on ‘A War for England – the First Barons’ War’

The return to hill forts in the Dark Ages: what can this tell us about post-Roman Britain?

After being abandoned for nearly 400 years, some of the ancient Iron Age hill forts were re-occupied and re-fortified in the later fifth and early sixth centuries. Interestingly, some ‘new’ hill forts were also erected at this time.

Scoundrels, Dogs and Heathens: Christian Mercenaries in the Almohad Caliphate, 1121-1269

This article examines the complex phenomena of the Farfan, a Christian knight serving a Muslim ruler during the religious wars of 13th century Iberia.

The Fourth Crusade and the Problem of Food Provision in The Accounts of Robert De Clari and Geoffroy De Villehardouin

The analysis discusses their account of food provision and how Crusaders managed to provide for themselves during their journey from Venice to Constantinople in the period between June 1202 and May 1204.

Why did the Vikings attack?

For women, slaves, or in self-defence – what made the Vikings explode out of Denmark and Norway around the year 800?

Blood Cries Afar: The Forgotten Invasion of England, 1216

The large French expeditionary force that landed in England in May 1216 allied with baronial rebels against King John to divide the country for eighteen months. For a year the French occupied and ruled the richest one-third of England, including the capital, London.

Fighting in women’s clothes: The pictorial evidence of Walpurgis in Ms. I.33

Ms. I.33 is not only the oldest of the known fencing treatises in European context, it is also the only one showing a woman fighting equally with contemporary men.

Who were the Templars?

The idea of the Knights Templar looked good on paper. Have knights from across Europe join a monastic order that would defend the Holy Land from non-Christians. They would be devout warriors fighting on behalf of God, an example for all of Christendom. What could go wrong?

The Square “Fighting March” of the Crusaders at the Battle of Ascalon (1099)

In this paper I will examine a number of theories about the origin of this particular marching formation, based on the manuals attributed to the Byzantine Emperors Maurice (582–602), Leo VI (886–912) and Nicephoros Phocas (963– 69) and several anonymous Byzantine military treatises of the sixth and tenth centuries.

Were Christians and Muslims Allies in the First Crusade?

In this article, we present the case that an alliance existed between the Crusaders and the Fatimid rulers of Egypt, and it was only when that alliance broke down that Jerusalem would become the target of a military attack.

“A Well-Regulated Militia”: The Medieval Origins of the Second Amendment

As it turns out, weapons ownership—and its relationship to political rights, power, and masculine self-image—has deep roots in the Middle Ages. This in turns, explains how firearms came to be so entrenched in American culture.

Medieval Geopolitics: The Medieval “Military Revolution”

From the late 1200s onward, royal warmaking capabilities underwent profound changes – changes that made them decisively less feudal and decidedly more state-like.

“You will all be killed”: Medieval Life in War-Torn Paris

During the Hundred Years’ War, the city of Paris was captured and ruled by the English for sixteen years. The story of this violent and terrible period is vividly recounted by an anonymous writer, known as the Bourgeois de Paris.

Noble warriors: the military elite and Henry VIII’s expeditions of 1513 and 1544

This thesis is concerned with identifying and understanding the typical behaviour of the early Tudor nobility, particularly in relation to military activity.

Survival at the frontier of Holy War: political expansion, crusading, commerce and the medieval colonizing settlement at Biała Gora, North Poland 

In the southern Baltic, episodes of colonisation were accompanied by processes of military conquest, political subjugation and religious conversion.

Reframing the Conversation on Medieval Military Strategy

This question of the history of strategy is a question of intellectual history: did medieval writers generate and transmit derivative and/or original ideas about how to wage war?

Medieval Geopolitics: The Two Types of Warfare in Medieval Europe

In this, the first post of the Medieval Geopolitics series, I take a look at the two types of political war fought in medieval Europe.

Simon de Montfort and King Henry III: The First Revolution in English History, 1258–1265

The reign of Henry III (1216–1272) was pivotal in English political history. It saw the entrenchment of Magna Carta, the growth of parliament and the widening of political society, as well as England’s first revolution (1258–1265), led by Simon de Montfort, earl of Leicester.

Historical European Martial Art: a crossroad between academic research, martial heritage re-creation and martial sport practices

This paper will propose and discuss, ideas on how to bridge the gap between enthusiasts and scholars; since their embodied knowledge, acquired by practice, is of tremendous value for scientific inquiries and scientific experimentation.

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