Feminine Love in the Twelfth Century – A Case Study: The Mulier in the Lost Love Letters and the Work of Female Mystics

Heloise and Abelard - painting created in 1819

This article compares the twelfth-century writings of the secular mulier in the Lost Love Letters with the work of religious female ‘mystics’ to draw comparisons about the way these authors chose to express love.

Of sagas and sheep: Toward a historical anthropology of social change and production for market, subsistence and tribute in early Iceland

Medieval hunt - images of sheep

This dissertation deals with the formation of chiefdoms, communities, ecclesiastical institutions and state, and with production for market, subsistence and tribute in early Iceland in the context of climatic change and ecological succession.

Anatomy of a Crusade: The De Expugnatione Lyxbonensi and the Lisbon Crusade of 1147

The Conquest of Lisbon painting by Alfredo Roque Gameiro (1917)

This paper will argue that the author crafted the speeches largely after the fact, and that Raol was able to graft ecclesiastical crusade theory onto the siege. In effect, he was able to marry a military success to the growing body of crusade propaganda.

Crafting the witch: Gendering magic in medieval and early modern England

The Devil and witches

This project documents and analyzes the gendered transformation of magical figures occurring in Arthurian romance in England from the twelfth to the sixteenth centuries.

The (Attempted) Alliance of Alfonso VIII of Castile and Valdemar II of Denmark: the Infante Fernando’s Marriage Reconsidered

King Alfonso VIII 'the Noble' of Castile

This paper presents the evidence for a lost marriage alliance between Castile and Denmark, contextualizes the marriage within the larger framework of Alfonso VIII’s international relations, and finally, demonstrates that the match can help to underscore the importance of crusading lineages in the affairs of the Castilian royal family.

Beyond the Border. The aristocratic mobility between the kingdoms of Portugal and León (1157- 1230)

Alfonso IX of León

During the reigns of Fernando II and Alfonso IX, the kingdom of León became home to several Portuguese aristocrats. Their relations with the Galician and Leonese nobility helped them create many cross-border ties and a powerful network of family-based relationships which heavily influenced the course of the main political conflicts of this period.

The Episcopal Body and Sexuality in Late Medieval England

Thomas Becket, with mitre, pall and cross, being consecrated.

How was long-term celibacy thought to affect the health of religious men? How could medical knowledge help clerics to achieve bodily purity?

Peasant Anger and Violence in the Writings of Orderic Vitalis

Medieval Violence

This paper examines the representation of peasant anger in the writings of Orderic Vitalis. In his texts, Orderic often associates peasant anger with divine vengeance and just violence.

Tundale’s Vision: Socialization in 12th Century Ireland

tundale vision

The purpose of this project is to explore the historical image of Hell in Medieval Europe as an agent of socialization for illiterate Christian communities.

Earl Rögnvaldr of Orkney, a Poet of the Viking Diaspora

St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, Orkneys, Scotland - St Rognvald, earl of Orkney - photo by Otter

Kali Kolsson, later Rögnvaldr, Earl of Orkney, ca. 1103–1158, is a truly international figure. He was born in Noway. He travelled to England with some traders in his youth. He then came to power in Northern Scotland.

Serving the man that ruled: aspects of the domestic arrangements of the household of King John, 1199-1216

When banquets were dangerous for the soul

This thesis interrogates the evidence of the household ordinances from the twelfth to fourteenth centuries, by using a corpus of record sources extant from 1199 onwards, which break through the façade of departmentalism to reveal the complexity of the royal household.

Constructing memory: holy war in the Chronicle of the Poles by Bishop Vincentius of Cracow

Poland

The Chronicle of the Poles by Bishop Vincentius of Cracow is a twelfth-century history of Poland and a recognised masterpiece of medieval scholarship.

The Floating State: Trade Embargoes and the Rise of a New Venetian State

Neptune offering gifts to Venice - Giovanni Battista Tiepolo

This paper was given by Georg Christ and examined embargoes and state formation in the late medieval and early modern period in Venice.

The Wages of Sin: Kinship and Forgiveness in the ‘Herlechin’s Hunt’ of Orderic Vitalis

"Wodan's Wild Hunt" (1882) by Friedrich Wilhelm Heine

In Book VIII of this lengthy chronicle of Norman affairs, Orderic paused in his description of the political struggles between the sons of William the Conqueror to tell a ghost story.

12th-century Byzantine manuscript returned to Greece

byzantine manuscript - image courtesy the Getty Museum

After being stolen from a monastery over fifty years ago, a 12th-century Byzantine manuscript has been returned to Greece by the J. Paul Getty Museum.

Medicine and surgery in the Livre des Assises de la Cour des Bourgeois de Jérusalem

The Assizes of Jerusalem

The Livre des Assises, written in the thirteenth century in Acre, not only provides insights into the practice of medicine and surgery in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, but also suggests that the licensing and regulation of doctors reflected contemporary Islamic practice.

Mirrors for Princes: Henry II and the Succession to the Angevin Empire

Henry II and his children - Royal 14 B V   Membrane 5

Understandably, with so many ‘devilish’ offspring, Henry II faced many difficulties when it came to bringing up his sons, including the problem of how to successfully integrate them into the rule of the Angevin Empire.

The Danes and the Marriage Break-up of Philip II of France

Philip Augustus

On 14 August 1193 the illustrious king Philip II of France repudiated his queen, Ingeborg, the daughter of the Danish king Valdemar I, during her coronation ceremony in Amiens cathedral. The events that followed, which merited twenty-four papal letters and the comment and speculation of several chroniclers across Europe.

Irish Hagiographical Lives in the Twelfth Century: Church Reform before the Anglo-Norman Invasion

Saint Brendan and the whale from a 15th century manuscript

In order to further disentangle the reality and fiction of this view of culture versus barbarity and of reform versus wickedness, I shall analyse twelfth-century Irish vitae.

Fast and Feast – Christianization through the Regulation of Everyday Life

Haakon Jarl (Haakon Sigurdsson) was given missionaries by the king of Denmark, but before departure, Haakon sent the missionaries back.

This article will illustrate that an important part of rulers’ wish to create a Christian society was the introduction of Christian legislation.

Berengaria of Navarre, Queen of England

Berengaria and Richard I

Of the many princesses available as a bride for Richard the Lionheart, King of England, Berengaria of Navarre was chosen to be his queen.

The Illnesses of King Richard and King Philippe on the Third Crusade

richard-and-phillip

For weeks both Richard and Philippe were close to the brink of death, before they finally recovered.

Why does Saladin have such good PR in the Medieval West?

Saladin -  by Gustave Doré

The story of Hattin and the Third Crusade is a very good read and it features a splendid duel, indeed almost a tournament, pitting Saladin against Richard the Lionheart. And to this exciting mixture is added a dash of sex

The Kidnapped King: Richard I in Germany, 1192–1194

Holy Roman Emperor Henry VI grants a pardon to Richard I of England

In 1193 the rulers of Germany and England met for the first time in history.

Nicolette : action transvestite, or, who and what is the heroine of Aucassin et Nicolette?

Aucassin and Nicolette, 19th-century oil-on-canvas by Marianne Stokes

In this paper, I will show how Nicolette is constantly, deliberately, changing, in appearance and identity, from the beginning of the story, and how she is thus Izzard’s action transvestite.

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