First, take your royal sturgeon….

  It’s always rewarding to find a site that is helpful with medieval research. By this I mean everyday research, not the highly specialised work of historians. This site was stumbled upon because I needed to find out how sturgeon would have been served in the medieval period. Yes, it had been a royal fish… Continue reading First, take your royal sturgeon….

Medlars – the medieval fruit we’ve nearly forgotten….

This extract is from https://gardenandhappy.com/medlar/ “….Great writers such as Shakespeare and Chaucer used medlars to convey the loss of womanly virtue. In The Honest Whore, Thomas Dekker wrote: “Women are like medlars, no sooner ripe but rotten”. Hmm, that bit about “no sooner ripe but rotten” is more likely to apply to the male of the species. As soon… Continue reading Medlars – the medieval fruit we’ve nearly forgotten….

A zoomable map of Europe in the mid-15th century….

If you go to this link you’ll find a fascinating, zoomable map of Europe in 1444. You really can zoom right in, and my only regret is that more towns, etc. aren’t indicated. Well, a lot are listed by initials on the left, but it’s not the same as being able to read them once… Continue reading A zoomable map of Europe in the mid-15th century….

Pointy shoes and Satan’s claws….

Well, I have always regarded those awful pointed shoes of the 14th to 16th centuries as a rather daft fashion fad, and to be avoided if you had to go up stairs because you’d have to accomplish the ascent sideways, like a crab. But it seems this footwear was much more than that! In fact… Continue reading Pointy shoes and Satan’s claws….

The true significance of posy rings….

Treasure buried in fields and discovered centuries later are always in the news these days. These are usually coins, of course, but also jewellery, including posy rings. A posy ring was found in Wales very recently so I was interested to then read about the true meaning of such rings in A Crisis of Truth… Continue reading The true significance of posy rings….

IF THE SHOE FITS…

15th C fashion could be quite dramatic…and sometimes, to our modern eyes, a bit ridiculous. Nothing more so than the infamous Poulaine shoes, with their excessively long pointed toes that looked as if they were dangerous to walk in (the nearest we had to them in modern times were the Winklepicker shoes worn by Teddy… Continue reading IF THE SHOE FITS…

The Decline of Villeinage

The Peasants’ Revolt of 1381 is well-known, and it is often thought that the decline of serfdom, or villeinage, began at about this time. The truth is more complex. Like most English traditions, villeinage took a long time to pass and outlived its usefulness by many decades. Indeed Queen Elizabeth I still owned serfs –… Continue reading The Decline of Villeinage

Medieval Latin Mass as Richard would have known it….

I have often wondered about the medieval Mass. What happened? What would it have been like to be there? What was said/sung/chanted? Well, I have now found a link to a You Tube film that shows a recreation of a Mass of Sunday, 4th October 1450 – the 18th Sunday after Pentecost. The film itself… Continue reading Medieval Latin Mass as Richard would have known it….

Illustrations of gathering food in Northern Italy in the 14th century….

  While searching around for an illustration of an English cherry tree in blossom in the late 14th century, I happened upon this link which opens with “….Lavishly illustrated manuscripts known as the Tacuinum Sanitatis were first commissioned by northern Italian nobility during the last decades of the 14th century….” So I looked further, and… Continue reading Illustrations of gathering food in Northern Italy in the 14th century….