Records of a manor court give some idea of daily life in the Middle
Ages; see, for example, some 1290s records from
The Abbot of Battle's Court at Brithwaltham, found in
The Internet Medieval Sourcebook.
"Anglo-Saxon Women: More Than Just 'Frithuwebbas'", Cathy Coone-McRary essentially offers a synopsis of Christine Fell's Women in Anglo-Saxon
Certain of St. Augustine's texts are important
for understanding medieval attitudes towards marriage, especially among the theologians:
In "Brandy," Dr.
Lienhard examines both the Eastern and Western discoveries of fermentation and distillation.
-- a bit of history from Dr. John Lienhard of Engines of Our Ingenuity.
NEW LINKS! Professor Tara Maginnis of the University
of Alaska-Fairbanks has gathered together a vast Internet library of costuming links at "The Costumer's
Manifesto." Pages of most interest to medievalists include:
NEW LINK! The Motco Project has digitized Henry
Harben's 1910 A Dictionary of the City of London:
“A gazetteer of over 6000 street and place names in the City of London; their location, origin, and changes.” Use the
Dictionary on-line, or buy the CD-ROM.
"Do Exempla Illustrate Everyday Life?" is a challenging essay by Mark D. Johnston for the Medieval
Studies section of the 1994 MLA Convention.
Inspired by Christine de Pisan's The Treasure of the City of Ladies,
Troy Schied and Laura Toon created
Dominion and Domination of the Gentle Sex: The Lives of Medieval Women in the basic format of exploring a city. This site includes
basic information on everyday life for the famous and not-so-famous women of the Middle Ages.
NEW LINK! “The aim of
Florilegium Urbanum is to provide a considered selection of primary source texts illustrative of various aspects of
medieval urban life, and to present those texts in modern English” - Stephen Alsford.
It turns out that
Footwear of the Middle Ages is a more complex topic than some of us might have supposed; I.
Marc Carlson's site is extensive and informative, with pictures.
For recipes and information (including a glossary) of medieval
and renaissance food, as well as period illustrations of food and feasting, see James L. Matterer's
fabulous site, Gode Cookery, especially the following portions:
Matterer's Gode Cookery
also includes notes (from various places) on daily life in the Middle Ages in his "Tales of the Middle Ages" section,
On Marriage is an important medieval text on the subject; this translation is in
The Internet Medieval Sourcebook.
Historical Recipes of Different Cultures, from Carnegie Mellon University, includes collections
of "Medieval and Anglo-Saxon Recipes" and "Medieval European Recipes," primarily taken from The
British Museum Cookbook (modern English language and redaction).
Patty Strassman of Millersville University provides
"The Influence of the Spice Trade on the Age of Discovery", an essay with brief bibliography.
Towns and the Countryside in Late Medieval England", an article by Christopher Dyer originally
published in Canadian Journal of History, April 1996, for a scholarly discussion (with
charts and tables) based on borough and court records for five adjacent market towns between 1280 and 1520.
Barns," Dr. Lienhard demonstrates how medieval Europe blended the sacred and the secular
in everyday life.
For a version of the Julian calendar used in England during the
11th to 16th centuries, see A Medieval
English Calendar, part of a site on medieval English genealogy by Chris Phillips. The calendar is organized
both by regnal year (following the Norman Conquest of 1066), and by historical year.
West" discusses connections between the American "Wild West" and the Euorpean Middle Ages.
Dr. Lienhard later reworked this episode of Engines of Our Ingenuity as
Middle Ages: What Was It Really Like to Live in the Middle Ages comes from the Annenberg/
CPB Project. Topics include:
Passing To and Fro: The Lives and Times of the Canterbury Tales Pilgrims, James Matterer
looks at the lives and pilgrimage of Chaucer's characters -- and by extension, the lives of those
characters as they existed in medieval English society. He includes a brief Bibliography for further research.
Grace after Meals: The Status of Jewish Women, from Berakhot, chapter 7, translation
at The Internet Medieval Sourcebook, we learn that women are assumed to be men's inferiors
both as persons and with regards to education.
Regia Anglorum, a term
which basically means "the English state," is also the name of a living history society, a group of
scholars and enthusiasists who focus on Anglo-Saxon, Viking, Norman, and British history, whose "self-imposed
brief is AD 950-1066," and "whose basic tenet is Authenticity." Pages of special interest here
(with illustrations) include:
Paul Halsall's highly-praised and frequently-linked
Internet Medieval Sourcebook includes this
"Selected Sources: Sex and Gender" page, which contains links to information about Women's
Roles, Men's Roles, Constructions of Sexuality and Gender, and Marriage.
"Tabby and Cob" focuses on the housing of the medieval poor in this Engines of Our Ingenuity
In "Training a Young Wife," John Lienhard shows how well a
14th-century household text can illuminate the past for us today.
NEW LINK! Danuta Bois gives a brief biography of
the 11th-century Italian woman physician
Trotula of Salerno.
Portions of the
text for training a young wife by the 14th-century "Goodman of Paris" can be found in translation through The Internet Medieval
NEW LINK! The Internet Medieval Sourcebook provides portions of
Two Sermons on Wives and
Widows by St. Bernardino of Siena, an important 15th-century preacher.
Viking Women briefly
examines everyday life for women of Viking/Norse communities. This is a page from
The Vikings (part of The Viking Network), which includes a general page on