This article discusses various forms of ordeals, such as the ordeal of hot iron, and analyzes whether, and to what extent, these ordeals could have served as ‘rational’ forms of adjudication during the period.
Paper by Bart Lambert given at Medieval and Early Modern Records Seminar held in Leeds, on August 2, 2014
In the twelfth century, courtly love was all the rage with the French nobility. To participate in this trendiest of trends, though, you actually needed to know the rules.
In the specific form it took during the medieval period, penal enslavement therefore amounts to a strikingly new phenomenon. How did such a system come about, and what functions did it serve?
The medicine of medieval Europe was influenced above all by the Hippocratic and Galenic legacies, conveyed through the medical School of Salerno, albeit also to an extent embedded in demonological and supernatural beliefs and folklore customs.
Fashion and luxury were very important in Italian Renaissance society. One’s appearance indicated more than whether one was simply attractive, it also indicated one’s social standing.
‘I pray you, my own sweet cousin even as you love me, to be happy and to eat your meat like a woman.’
This specific example, and a survey of later medieval texts suggests that the period between 1150 and 1500 was one of increasing attention to the facial features of both men and women within and outside clerical circles, driven partly by increased exposure of western Europeans to peoples of different physical appearance, and partly by the rediscovery of the ancient pseudo-science of physiognomy, which claimed to read character traits from facial features.
This essay studies the Venetian patriciate’s enforcement of its exclusiveness and superior status by focusing on the purity and social standing on the women of the class.
This study proposes that performative rituals—that is, verbal and physical acts that reiterate prior uses—enabled medieval women and men to negotiate the dangers and difficulties of conception and childbirth.
But bring us in good ale, good ale, and bring us in good ale,
For our blessed Lady’s sake, bring us in good ale!
In the Middle Ages he symbolized the vanity of human pretension, whereas the lord he served represented divine perfection; it was a neat image of the antithesis within man’s nature, as they conceived it, sublime and ridiculous together.
More misericords depicting husband-beating survive in England than in other European countries, and their artistic profusion is mirrored in the rich vernacular tradition for which violent wives proved a favoured subject.
Focusing especially on Jewish moneylending, the article explores economic relations between Jews and Christians in Northern Castile at the turn of the fourteenth century.
Jay Gates, Nicole Marafioti and Valerie Allen speak about Capital and Corporal Punishment in Anglo-Saxon England
‘Spurred on by the Fear of Death’: Refugees and Displaced Populations during the Mongol Invasion of Hungar
Sensitized by the grim headlines which daily announce the appalling plight of twentieth-century refugees in eastern Europe, I was motivated to investigate the behavior and conditions of medieval refugees fleeing the Mongols.
Locks of Difference: The Integral Role of Hair as a Distinguishing Feature in Early Merovingian Gaul
The aim of this paper is to understand the meanings that the Franks ascribed to hair and, in this quest, it will survey the different interpretations of hair that existed in sixth century Gaul.
What kind of acts do we consider as sexual violence in relation to the early Middle Ages? And in particular: does the phenomenon come down to a forced sexual act (in the broadest sense of the word, i.e. in a situation whereby somebody against the will of another person achieves sexual satisfaction)?
The political, social and cultural conditions of later medieval England fostered a situation in which ordinary people could have remarkable political agency.
Through the ages of Cairene history the alcoholic beverages, entangled in political and religious developments, depended more on prevailing doctrinal currents than on people’s habitual or taste inclinations. Therefore, the story of these beverages’ consumption is – not surprisingly – a turbulent one.
Sverre Sigurdsson, a medieval King of Norway, tells his followers about the dangers of overdrinking.
Mapping the Medieval Countryside has announced that the beta version of their searchable English translations of inquisitions post mortem (IPMs) – a major source into the lives and legacies of thousands of families from the Later Middle Ages.
Witch hunting became intensified in many parts of Europe during the Protestant Reformation, and especially so in Scotland.