Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Book review: Cathedral by Jon Cannon

England’s magnificent medieval cathedrals are acknowledged as one of the wonders of the world, but who built them and why?

The aptly named Jon Cannon explores these extraordinary creations from a new and fascinating angle in his beautifully illustrated historical guide.

Here he views them not just as awe-inspiring buildings but as constantly changing structures created by a rich brew of ancient rituals, beliefs, personalities and politics – a sort of living window onto the past.

Click here to read this article from the Burnley Express

Monday, May 30, 2011

Environmental Crusaders: How Medieval Knights remade Poland’s ecosystems

In 1280, victorious Teutonic Crusaders began building the world’s largest castle on a hill overlooking the River Nogat in what is now northern Poland. Malbork Castle became the hub of a powerful Teutonic state that crushed its pagan enemies and helped remake Medieval Europe. Now, ancient pollen samples show that in addition to converting heathens to Christians, the Crusaders also converted vast swathes of Medieval forests to farmlands.

Click here to read this article from Conservation Magazine

Fashion in the Middle Ages exhibition begins at the Getty

The J. Paul Getty Museum unveils a new medieval exhibition tomorrow, which will examine what people wore during this period. Fashion in the Middle Ages, on display from May 31 to August 14, 2011, explores how medieval artists used costumes to identify people by profession or to place them in a social hierarchy and at other times used fanciful or idealized images of clothing.

“People in the Middle Ages were highly skilled at reading the meaning of clothing,” says Kristen Collins, associate curator of manuscripts. “The way figures were dressed in manuscripts provided the book’s reader with clues to their social status, profession or ethnicity.”

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Faces of medieval people revealed at Stirling Castle

A new exhibition at Stirling Castle in Scotland will bring visitors face to face with knight and lady excavated from its lost royal chapel.

Scientific research has revealed that at least five of the medieval people whose skeletons were discovered at Stirling Castle suffered brutally violent deaths. The discovery offers an extraordinarily rare insight into medieval warfare.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Costumes fit for a King…and a Queen, go on display in York

If you’ve ever fancied yourself as the next dashing Mr Darcy or Elizabeth Bennett, Barley Hall in York is the place for you. The city’s medieval townhouse, Barley Hall, is host the first public appearance of costumes worn by Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter in the multi-award winning film, The King’s Speech, alongside a whole host of other BBC and Hollywood favourites.

The costume displays are part of York Archaeological Trust’s new “From Hamlet to Hollywood: fashion from film” exhibition which will run until May 2012. The exhibition displays costumes worn by some of the best-loved stars of stage and screen, and explores changes in fashion from Tudor times through to the 20th Century.

Click here to read this article from Early Modern England

Stirling Castle's Amazon warrior revealed

The discovery of the remains of an aristocratic Scottish "Amazon", killed in battle during the Wars of Independence, is set to rewrite the history books.

Her skeleton was among the remains of five "high status" individuals - all of whom had suffered violent deaths - found beneath the paved floor of the "lost" Royal Chapel at Stirling Castle.

Click here to read this article from the Scotsman

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ceremony lays to rest bones of three medieval Jews in Northampton

A ceremony has taken place to mark the resting place of the bones of three medieval Jews found in the town.

The skeletal remains were found by archeologists in 1992 in Temple Bar, The Mounts, in an area known to be part of the town’s medieval Jewish cemetery.

The bones were re-buried last year at the Jewish Cemetery in Towcester Road, Northampton, and, in-keeping with Jewish tradition a consecration ceremony was held at the site on May 22, a year after the burial.

Click here to read this article from the Northampton Chronicle and Echo

More archaeological finds being report in UK, British Museum reports

Over 90 000 archaeological finds were reported to British authorities in 2010, the British Museum reports, which marks a significant increase over previous years. The growth has been credited to the efforts to make it easier to report finds to the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS), the British agency in charge of recording archaeological discoveries.

In 2010, 90,146 archaeological objects were recorded through the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS), a 36% increase on 2009, and 859 Treasure cases, up 10%; the British Museum manages the PAS, and also administers the Treasure Act 1996.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

New book examines the influence of medieval Welsh on Tolkien

J.R.R. Tolkien once wrote: “I love Wales…and especially the Welsh language”. Now, a Cardiff University academic has explored Wales’ influence on Tolkien in the first book-length study of his debts to Welsh language and literature.

Tolkien and Wales: Language, Literature and Identity traces the Welsh influences in Tolkien’s scholarly and creative work, paying particular attention to some relatively neglected texts. The book was officially launched last weekend.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Lyndhurst church embarks on archaeological dig

A New Forest church is starting an archaeological investigation which it is hoped could reveal clues about medieval settlements in Lyndhurst.

The dig at St Michael and All Angels will remove a 5ft (1.5m) deep and 16ft (5m) wide earth mound to allow a new driveway to be built.

Any fragments of artefacts could give an insight into previous settlements and religious activity on the site.

Click here to read this article from the BBC

Public invited to tour archaeological dig in Cambridgeshire

A team of archaeologists from the University of Birmingham are set to share their work at the largest open area excavation to be undertaken at the medieval village of Longstanton, Cambridgeshire, with a public open day offering guided tours of the site.

Hosted by Birmingham Archaeology, part of the University’s Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity, the open day is taking place on Thursday 26 May at the site in Longstanton and will provide visitors with a glimpse of the past history of the local area.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Little Byzantine Churches of Athens

Athens is a city that interplays both east and west. From the deluxe hotels and modern office buildings, to the bazaars that hint of the Orient, Athens is a fast moving, modern capital. It’s hard to believe that once it was considered to be an unimportant provincial town. Seeking out the Byzantine churches of Athens is a great way to learn about and understand life in Byzantine Athens.

During the time of the Byzantine Empire (approximately 330 AD to 1453 AD), the Emperor Justinian passed an edict forbidding the study of philosophy in Athens. This law dealt a death blow to the ancient city. Athens, shorn of its glory, was ignored by the rest of the Byzantine Empire. Compared to the capital, Constantinople, it was thought to be culturally and politically insignificant. Because of this, Byzantine Athens is represented by only a dozen or so churches and monasteries, most of which date from the 11th century.

Click here to read this article from Reuters

Stolen 14th-century Italian painting found in the United States

A 14th-century triptych painting, which was stolen from an Italian villa nearly 40 years ago, has been found in a museum in Kentucky. US government officials announced yesterday that the art piece, a three-panel wooden triptych, which depicts the Virgin Mary with Child, was found at the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, will be returned to its owners in Italy.

The triptych, which is believed to the work of Jacopo del Casentino, was stolen from the Villa La Giraffa in Goito, Italy, on October 2, 1971. According to Italian police reports, burglars entered the villa in the early morning hours by cutting through metal bars and a glass window on the first floor of the residence. Fourteen pieces of art, worth $33 million at the time, were stolen, including original oil paintings by the Italian realist painters Giovanni Fattori and Silvestro Lega, and three still-life paintings by artists from the Venetian School.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Monday, May 23, 2011

Scholars examine Brut Chronicle

Scholars well-versed in the Brut tradition — the process of compiling British history — convened on campus this weekend to discuss their work on the Brut Chronicle, a 15th century manuscript detailing British history, in a three-day conference entitled “From Medieval Britain to Dartmouth: Situating the English Brut Tradition.”

The event explored topics ranging from the development of book-making to the significance of the manuscript’s marginal annotations — all centered around the narrative of Dartmouth’s Brut Chronicle, a 121-leaf manuscript written in Middle English prose.

Click here to read this article from The Dartmouth

Ruins of 13th-century castle discovered in northern England

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of Westgate Castle in the northern English area of Weardale in the North Pennies region. The lost castle once was part of the Bishop of Durham’s great deer park of Stanhope.

From the 13th century through until the early 17th, Westgate Castle served as the ‘west gate’ into the Bishop of Durham’s great deer park, and functioned as an administrative headquarters for the Bishop’s extensive estate encompassing the old Forest of Weardale. By the mid 17th century it lay in ruins and its masonry was quarried for new buildings.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Remains of Medieval Village found in Cheshire

Construction work on a new housing development in Runcorn, Cheshire, has unearthed what are thought to be the final remains of the medieval village of Norton. Around 80 archaeological features have been found at the site near Lodge Farm, off Highgate Close, Norton village, since excavation began at the end of April.

Archaeologists have unearthed shards of pottery they believe date from the 13th and 14th centuries, as well as the footings and post holes of former timber-framed houses close to site of the old village road. The site, which is around 700 square metres, was required to be excavated because it is in a location of archaeological interest and remains of medieval buildings, as well as pits containing prehistoric pottery, were found when the adjacent lot was excavated in the 1970s.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

British medieval records award special status by UNESCO

Twenty items have been selected from the UK’s libraries, archives and museums to represent the outstanding heritage of the United Kingdom, including several that date back to the Middle Ages. They new items listed in the UK Memory of the World Register include the Cura Pastoralis of Gregory, the Gough Map, Wakefield Court Rolls, Winchester Pipe Rolls and records of The Great Hospital in Norwich.

The international-level register, which features items of global significance, includes items from the UK such as 1215 Magna Carta, the Mappa Mundi and the film The Battle of the Somme. The UK Memory of the World programme is part of UNESCO’s work to promote preservation of and access to the world’s archive holdings and library collections. The UK Register is available at www.unesco.org.uk/ukregister

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Illuminating Fashion: Dress in the Art of Medieval France and the Netherlands – new exhibition at The Morgan Library and Museum

Medieval fashion, as seen in the manuscripts and early printed books from the Later Middle Ages, is the subject of a new exhibition at The Morgan Library and Museum entitled Illuminating Fashion: Dress in the Art of Medieval France and the Netherlands. The exhibition, which opened yesterday, includes more than 50 works of Northern European origin from the Morgan’s renowned collections, and also features four full-scale replicas of clothing seen in exhibited manuscripts. It will run through September 4.

Covering nearly 200 years prior to the beginning of the full Renaissance in France about 1515, Illuminating Fashion examines a period in which clothing styles changed more rapidly than had previously been the case, often from one decade to the next. Social custom, cultural influences, and politics—such as the Hundred Years’ War (1337–1453) and the occupation of Paris by the English (in the 1420s)—had a notable impact on fashion, and medieval illuminators deftly recorded these shifts in taste.

The exhibition also touches upon how artists used clothing (garments actually worn) and costume (fantastic garments not actually worn) to help contemporaneous viewers interpret a work of art. The garments depicted were often encoded clues to the wearer’s identity and character.

Click here to read this article from Medievalist.net

Friday, May 20, 2011

Dr. Tomás Ó Carragáin wins award for Irish Medieval Studies

Dr. Tomás Ó Carragáin, a lecturer at University College Cork, has been awarded the inaugural Four Courts Press Michael Adams Prize in Irish Medieval Studies for his essay “The Architectural Setting of the Mass in Early-medieval Ireland.”

This prize was awarded last week at the International Congress on Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University. It is given for the best peer-reviewed essay/article on Irish Medieval Studies published in a book or journal during the 2006–2010.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources project nears completion

A huge number of students ranging from linguists to those studying coins and family ancestry are benefiting from a 100 year project to compile the world’s most comprehensive dictionary of Medieval Latin.

Work started on the unique Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources 50 years ago but experts began collecting material early in the 20th century.

Now the initiative is nearing completion and Professor Tobias Reinhardt, Corpus Christi Professor of the Latin Language and Literature at Oxford University is responsible for seeing it through.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Laneshaw Bridge archaeologist unearths medieval ring

An archaeology enthusiast from Laneshaw Bridge has made the discovery of a lifetime.

Craig Scott was on a rally with Lune Valley Metal Detection Club when he unearthed a medieval ring from a field near Kirkby Lonsdale.

The 14th Century silver ring is engraved with the letters “IhESVS”, ancient lombardic script for the name Jesus.

Click here to read this article from Pendle Today

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Crusade, Liturgy, Ideology, and Devotion project

Cecilia Gaposchkin, assistant professor of history and assistant dean of faculty for pre-major advising, has accepted a fellowship at Princeton’s Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies, where she will work on a project tentatively titled “Crusade, Liturgy, Ideology, and Devotion.”

“I am exploring the different ways that Western Christian ecclesiastical ritual underwrote crusade ideology in the period stretching from the 11th to the 15th century,” says Gaposchkin, a medieval historian. “I began teaching courses on the Crusades in 2005. This book grew out of that experience and has thoroughly informed it.”

Click here to read this article from Dartmouth College

Dartmouth Hosts Inaugural Conference for Brut Chronicle Scholarship

Dartmouth presents “From Medieval Britain to Dartmouth: Situating the English Brut Tradition” on Friday, May 20, and Saturday, May 21. The conference is dedicated to the introduction of the Dartmouth Brut Chronicle manuscript, which records a comprehensive version of British history from the Trojans to King Arthur to Henry V.

Dartmouth acquired its rare c. 1425 copy of the Brut Chronicle from a private source, making this conference the first time the Dartmouth Brut has been widely examined by scholars.

“The Dartmouth Brut is part of a rich tradition of history writing in medieval England, but it is also a unique document,” says conference organizer Michelle R. Warren, professor of comparative literature. “By comparing this manuscript to others, we can refine our understanding of how people understood the past, how they made and used books, and how varied the life of a single document can be.” She continues: “These lessons are pertinent today as our relationships with texts change with each technological innovation. Indeed, this conference wouldn’t have been possible without the digitization of the manuscript.”

Click here to read this article from Dartmouth College

You've Read 'The Canterbury Tales.' Prepare to Play the Board Game

A dozen years ago, Alf Seegert was into playing solo video games, and his wife-to-be was feeling left out. "Can't we play something together?" she asked Mr. Seegert, who works today as an assistant professor/lecturer in the University of Utah's English department.

That conversation led Mr. Seegert to The Settlers of Catan, a board game that the couple has been playing as a Saturday-night ritual with friends ever since. He became so enamored of games of that genre, which are known as German-style or Eurogames, that 10 years ago he decided to try making some of his own. He joined the Board Game Designers Guild of Utah, a group of like-minded geeks who test drive one another's creations and offer advice and camaraderie.

Click here to read this article from The Chronicle of Higher Education

Digital Images of Yale’s Vast Cultural Collections Now Available for Free

Scholars, artists and other individuals around the world will enjoy free access to online images of millions of objects housed in Yale’s museums, archives, and libraries thanks to a new “Open Access” policy that the University announced today. Yale is the first Ivy League university to make its collections accessible in this fashion, and already more than 250,000 images are available through a newly developed collective catalog.

The collection includes many items that will be of interest to medievalists, with various images available dating back to the late Middle Ages.

The goal of the new policy is to make high quality digital images of Yale’s vast cultural heritage collections in the public domain openly and freely available.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Medieval Armenian cemetery renovated in Turkey

A historical Armenian cemetery dating back to 1061 A.D. and measuring hundreds of acres in the eastern province of Sivas has been jointly renovated by the Armenian Patriarchate of Turkey, the local municipality and the provincial governor’s office. A Muslim cemetery located in the area also underwent restoration as part of the project, which was conceived by Minas Durmazgüler, the leader of Sivas’s Armenian community.

The renovation effort is being carried out in collaboration with the Patriarchate under Durmazgüler’s supervision in the village of Tavra near Kumlutarla. Sivas Mayor Doğan Ürgüp told the Hürriyet Daily News that 70 percent of the cost of renovation was paid for by the municipality, while the remaining 30 percent was taken care of by the Patriarchate and the owners of the cemetery.

Click here to read this article from Hurriyet Daily News

How blood and bones brought comfort, power and wealth – a new book from Yale University Press

Religious relics: a potential ticket to Heaven, a big boom for medieval tourism, and much more besides. 
Steven Russell meets a man who has studied this fascinating phenomenon...

Imagine (perish the thought) the Archbishop of Canterbury coming to a violent end and a crowd rushing to bottle blood trickling from his fatal wounds – convinced it had powerful religious properties that would rub off on them. Unthinkable today, but it happened with Thomas Becket in 1170, when an attempt by four barons to take him captive degenerated into a vicious attack that killed him in the cathedral.

His “crime” had been to excommunicate three bishops who had anointed Henry II’s son – Thomas being in France at the time – and thus effectively invalidate the coronation. Such defiance proved the final straw in a deteriorating relationship between Henry and the archbishop, caused by a power struggle between Crown and Church.

Click here to read this article from the East Anglian Daily Times

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

In royal absence: The making of an Icelandic aristocracy, 1271–1387

As Iceland became part of the Norwegian kingship 1262–1264, a new power structure in the shape of an Icelandic aristocracy appointed by the king of Norway was established. This development is discussed in a doctoral thesis in History from the University of Gothenburg that sheds light on a period in the Icelandic history that previously has not received its due attention.

’The 14th century has never received a great deal of attention in Icelandic history writing. This is surprising since this period is at least as important as the considerably more frequently discussed so-called Free State period (around 930–1262/64) when Iceland was autonomous, especially considering the country’s state formation process,’ says the author of the thesis Sigríður Beck.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Monday, May 16, 2011

Mosaic Painting Dating Back to Byzantine Era Unearthed in Idleb

Excavation Department at Idleb Antiquities Directorate on Tuesday unearthed a mosaic painting dating back to the Byzantine Era at Deir Sounbol Church in al-Zawieh Mountain.

Head of the Excavation and Studies Department, Anas Haj Zaiydan said that just a part of the mosaic painting was found at the eastern side of the church, adding that the painting is 5-meter long and 4-meter wide.

He indicated that the eastern part of the painting is burnt, adding that the part which is located to the west of the marble-made basis is also damaged as well as the northern and southern corners of the painting. The painting is embroidered with geometric and floral shapes, in addition to some written inscriptions.

Click here to read this article and see images from the Syrian Arab News Agency

Remains of Gawthorpe Hall discovered in Yorkshire

Archaeologists from the University of York are revealing intriguing traces – hidden for more than two centuries – of the forerunner of one of Yorkshire’s great country houses.

In the shadow of Harewood House, a team of undergraduate students is carrying out the painstaking task of unearthing the remnants of Harewood’s predecessor, Gawthorpe Hall, which was demolished in 1773. The excavation, led by Dr Jonathan Finch, of the University’s Department of Archaeology in partnership with York Archaeological Trust, is providing important new insights into the rise of the Lascelles family which owns Harewood to this day.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Archaeological team to investigate medieval town in East Africa

An exceptionally well-preserved example of a medieval Swahili stonetown on the coast of East Africa will be excavated by an international team of archaeologists from the Universities of York, Bristol, Bournemouth and Rice this summer thanks to £500,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

The dig at Songo Mnara, a World Heritage site on the southern coast of Tanzania, will enable the researchers to explore aspects of medieval urban planning in coastal East Africa.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Armed for a new era in Oakland, the Society for Creative Anachronism

The sun was just beginning to set when half a dozen men in tunics, helmets and armor stomped into the Rockridge BART parking lot. Thwack, thwack, thwack. The hollow sound echoed as one of them, dressed like a ninth century Norseman, dropped to his knees, arched back and raised his shield to receive the blow of his opponent's rattan sword.

"I've never seen that before. It's certainly elaborate," said a man walking by who stopped in his tracks at the performance. "Is it jousting?"

It's called sword fighting, and the practitioners are members of the Society for Creative Anachronism who have gathered in the parking lot every Thursday for 35 years. When they -- men and women -- are not trading tips on how to get the best fit in a helmet or where to find chain mail, they study and practice all forms of medieval life: dance, shoemaking, brewing, blacksmithing, singing and even cooking. They take on personas, names and devise their own coat of arms, like a medieval Social Security number.

Click here to read this article from the San Jose Mercury News

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Scholars with swords: Medieval Congress continues at Western Michigan University

A sword on a string? Well, actually, it is a 14th century German method of combat training.

So goes a session at 46th International Congress on Medieval Studies, which started Wednesday at Western Michigan University and will continue through Sunday.

More than 3,000 scholars of all things Medieval are in Kalamazoo for one of the largest conventions of it's kind in the world.

Click here to read this article from MLive.com

The forgotten children of medieval London

Teenagers today may think they have it tough but adolescents in medieval London had a much harder life.

In the early 1500s young migrant workers flocked into the capital in their thousands, often seeking apprenticeships. However, records show that many did not live to become adults. There was a dramatic rise in the mortality rates of 10 to 14-year-olds at this time, but their history has been largely ignored.

Dr Mary Lewis, from the Department of Archaeology at the University of Reading, has just been awarded £230,000 Leverhulme funding to investigate the, until now, forgotten group of adolescents.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

The Medievalverse at Kalamazoo

Our first two videos at the International Congress on Medieval Studies at Kalamazoo...

'Mona Lisa crypt' unearthed in Italy

Italian historians say they may have found a crypt containing the remains of the 16th-century woman who modeled for Leonardo Da Vinci's Mona Lisa, local media said on Friday.

Lisa Gherardini, the wife of a rich Florentine silk merchant, is widely believed to have modeled for the world-famous painting that hangs in the Louvre in Paris, although some experts say the final portrait may be a composite of several faces.

The historians found two crypts under the floor of the medieval St Ursula convent in the French city of Florence. Giocondo is believed to have moved to the convent following the death of her husband and eventually died there aged 63.

Click here to read this article from RIA Novosti

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Leeds exhibition to host history of sugar

Modern thinking says sugar is best avoided but a new exhibition hopes to show that sugar can be good, as Neil Hudson found out.

Once upon a time, there was no sugar. There were no hard-boiled sweets, no sugar-coated breakfast cereals, no chocolate drops and certainly no delicate sponge cakes with icing on top and cups of sweet tea to wash them down with.

It’s hard to imagine a world without sugar. It’s something we all take for granted, partly because of its ubiquity. It is on every coffee table, in every cupboard, ever corner shop and visit your local supermarket and it’s odds-on you’ll find a couple of split bags oozing white granules on to the aisle.

Travel back in time just 500 years, however, and sugar was a luxury with ‘superfood’ status.

Click here to read this article from the Yorkshire Evening Post

See also this article from the University of Leeds

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Get Medieval -- Western Michigan University's International Congress on Medieval Studies begins Thursday

About 600 informational sessions on top­ics ranging from the medievalism of Harry Potter novels to homosexuality in the Middle Ages will be held this week at Western Michigan University.

Medieval literature, mu­sic and art are some of the topics that will be discussed at WMU’s 46th International Congress on Medieval Studies, which will run from Thursday to Sunday.

Click here to read this article from the Kalamazoo Gazette

The Cursed Crusade

Atlus released a new trailer today for Kylotonn's upcoming co-op-tastic action game The Cursed Crusade, offering a good dose of the game's cooperative gameplay.

You'll take the role of Templar knight Denz, and your buddy, should you feel inclined to invite one, steps into the shoes of a mercenary by the name of Esteban. Pretty easy to tell who's who, based on their vastly different appearances. The trailer also lets us view the game in split-screen, though Cursed Crusade does support online play. Together, Denz and Esteban can pull off cooperative moves and finishers, or bring a fallen ally back to life.

Click here to read this article from Neoseeker

Monday, May 09, 2011

The Viking Sagas to be aired on BBC 4

The BBC will be airing a show examining Iceland’s medieval history this week. The Viking Sagas will first be see on Tuesday, May 10th, and is one of a number of programs being shown this week related to Iceland and its culture.

Click here to read the article from Medievalists.net

Professor selected for Guggenheim

A professor of English and human sciences was selected as a prestigious Guggenheim Fellow, one of 180 selected this year.

The competition, in its 87th year running, grants fellowships to artists, scientists and scholars with demonstrated accomplishments in their fields. Jeffrey Cohen was selected from a pool of 3,000 in 2011.

Cohen is the director of the Institute for Medieval and Early Modern Studies within the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences. He was chosen as a humanities and medieval literature fellow.

Click here to read this article from The GW Hatchet

Archaeologists explore grounds of English church dating back to the Anglo-Saxon era

An archaeological team from Kingston University has gone beneath the surface of the historic churchyard at All Saints Church in Laleham, Middlesex to try to find out more about its history. The team carried out a full scientific survey of the site, with local people and school children also taking the opportunity to get involved.

A church has stood on the grounds for well over 1,000 years and is of great historical significance. It is widely believed to be the site of the crowning of at least two Anglo-Saxon kings, and possibly as many as seven, during the 10th Century, including Athelstan, the first king of a unified England in 925, and Ethelred the Unready in 978-9. Nothing remains above ground of the original Anglo-Saxon church except for outlines marked by stones outside the south door of the present building.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Historic roofing stolen from medieval Nottingham church

Historic lead roofing panels have been stolen from a medieval Nottingham church.

Thieves broke into St Martin's Church at Bilborough on Wednesday night. It was the third attack on the church in three weeks.

Two thirds of the lead, which is worth thousands of pounds as scrap, has now been stolen.

Click here to read this article from the BBC

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Higgins Armory Museum opens medieval castle exhibit

A new exhibit in Massachusetts is offering a glimpse at life inside a medieval castle. The Higgins Armory Museum in Worcester is opening its interactive Castle Quest exhibit this weekend.

The new exhibit features battle tactics games and a castle building area. Visitors can handle pieces of armor, try on helmets and even hold medieval-style weapons. A stable area illustrates the importance of horses, dogs, falcons and other animals in European life 500 years ago.

Click here to read the full article from the Boston Herald

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Viking houses discovered in Dublin

Two Viking houses dating have been found in the Temple Bar area of Dublin, Ireland. The area was once an island in the middle of the River Poddle, and a Viking settlement prospered here during the 10th and 11th centuries.

Excavations at Meeting House Square started a few weeks ago, as local authorities are preparing to build retractable canopy over the square. Other medieval-era pottery fragments have also been discovered.

Click here to see videos from Medievalists.net

The One Minute Guide To... Medieval York

Continuing our series on UK destinations ideal for credit-crunch-friendly breaks, Chris Leadbeater is your guide to York, a city great for historic sights - and Christmas shopping...

What: The most historic portion of one of Britain's most antique cities. Founded by the Romans, fortified by the Vikings and transformed into a thriving centre of trade once the Normans had pulled off their hostile takeover of Ye Olde Englande, York is festooned with notable monuments to the past.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines 'medieval' as 'of the 5th to 15th centuries' – and York is well equipped with landmarks that fall into this category: its grand cathedral the Minster, the remnants of its once mighty castle, the narrow lanes with names like Swinegate, Fossgate and Little Stonegate that make the city a joy to visit at any time, but especially during the sparkly build-up to the festive season.

Click here to read this article from the Daily Mail

Friday, May 06, 2011

Medieval artefacts discovered in Bury St Edmunds

Medieval pottery, jewellery and building materials have been unearthed in Bury St Edmunds. Archaeologists from Suffolk County Council were called in to work on the site by Cocksedge Building Contractors, who plan to develop the area to provide housing.

Excavation work has been underway for three weeks in an undisclosed location. The archaeologists uncovered evidence of medieval buildings in the area with mortar and flint footings used to support timber beams.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Viking Shipyard discovered on the Isle of Skye

Archaeologists have discovered a 12th century Norse shipbuilding site on the Isle of Skye in Scotland.

Investigations at Loch na h-Airde on Skye’s Rubh an Dunain peninsula have uncovered the remains of a possible medieval shipyard, including boat timbers dating from the 1100s, a stone-built quay, a man-made entrance canal, and a blockage system designed to keep a constant water level in the Loch.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Museum to reveal treasures of Anglo-Saxon princess

A stunning collection of 7th century treasure, shedding light on the extraordinary life of an Anglo-Saxon princess, is set to be revealed to the public for the first time.

The astonishing artefacts – found in Loftus, East Cleveland, between 2005 and 2007 at the only known Anglo-Saxon royal burial site in North-East England – have been hailed by archaeologists as some of the rarest ever discovered.

Click here to read this article from Medievalists.net

WMU to host medievalists from around the globe

Western Michigan University will stage its 46th International Congress on Medieval Studies, the largest, most comprehensive academic conference of its kind in the world, Thursday through Sunday, May 12-15.

The congress annually attracts some 3,000 medievalists--professional academics, students and enthusiasts interested in the Middle Ages--from around the globe. It is sponsored by the Medieval Institute at WMU and held primarily in venues on the University's main campus in Kalamazoo.

Click here to read this article from Western Michigan University

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

New Robin Hood book unravels fact from fiction

The legend of Robin Hood began more than 700 years ago. But Professor Sir James Holt, one of the world's leading medieval historians, believes the elusive character from Sherwood Forest – if he existed at all – lived even earlier.

In a definitive new book, based on 30 years' research, he unravels pure invention from real possibility.

He assesses the evidence for the historical Robin Hood and finds that the tale originated with the yeomen and hangers-on of the households of noblemen and gentry in the later Middle Ages.

Click here to read this article from the Nottingham Post

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Austrian officials say unearthed treasure includes pieces made for royal court

A trove of medieval jewelry and other precious objects found by a man working in his backyard includes pieces made for a royal court and may be worth as much as 100,000 euros ($150,000) government experts said Monday.

The officials from Austria's department of national antiquities and the Academy of Sciences said they were only at the beginning of their investigation into the provenance and other details of the find.

"We have in front of us high-end products (made) for the highest consumer class of Central Europe" of the Middle Ages, academy member Thomas Kuehtreiber told reporters as security guards lifted a black velvet cloth from a glass case to reveal some of the rarer pieces.

The Federal Office for Memorials said the trove consists of more than 200 rings, brooches, ornate belt buckles, gold-plated silver plates and other pieces or fragments, many encrusted with pearls, fossilized coral and other ornaments. It says the objects are about 650 years old and weigh about 6.6 pounds (3 kilograms).

Click here to read this article from the Canadian Press

Medievalists.net - All Request Sunday articles

Here is the list of articles posted on All Request Sunday on our main site Medievalists.net

Franchise Conflict: The Tide of Antipopes in the Aftermath of the Eastern Schism

European Women Patrons of Art and Architecture, c. 1500-1650. Some Patterns

The Military Revolutions of the Hundred Years’ War

Rashi and the First Crusade: Commentary, Liturgy, Legend

Care of the Children: the Aldermen and the Orphans

The Cucurbitaceae and Solanaceae illustrated in medieval manuscripts known as the Tacuinum Sanitatis

Coinage and Money in the Latin Empire of Constantinople

Thomas More’s History of King Richard III: Educating Citizens for Self-Government

The Physical Spell of Gregorian Chant

Who Was Who in Medieval Limerick; from Manuscript Sources