ORIGIN STORIES

Heirs of the Vikings


Heirs of the Vikings
Viking settlers and their descendants inhabited both England and Normandy in the tenth century, but narratives discussing their origins diverged significantly. Why is that and how do they differ? What do they tell us about the two communities, how they viewed Vikings, what they believed about their own pasts and how they presented themselves? Dr Katherine Cross introduces us to a complex but fascinating topic. Read more

 

STRANGER THAN FICTION

The History of William Marshal


The History of William Marshal
William Marshal’s life is impossible to summarise briefly, other than perhaps as “extraordinary” but that doesn’t do it justice. Success in tournaments propelled him to the royal court and a lengthy career as statesman, diplomat and warrior that culminated in victory at the Battle of Lincoln. Nigel Bryant has his own record of glittering achievements in medieval translation and we are fortunate that he has turned his attention to Marshal’s biography which, he explains, is not hagiography (well, not completely) but filled with invaluable facts and details. Read more

 

MURDER INK

Medieval and Early Modern Murder


Medieval and Early Modern Murder
Murder was just as appalling to medieval society as it is to ours. And no less fascinating either. Professor Larissa Tracy’s latest collection uses literary and legal accounts of murder and its various incarnations (assassination infanticide, mariticide, regicide, tyrranicide or simple homicide to explore the variety of circumstances associated with it in the Middle Ages including law, literature, punishments, justifications and prohibitions. Read more

DESIGNED FOR WAR

The Medieval Military Engineer


The Medieval Military Engineer
While many great feats of medieval engineering and construction can still be seen, almost all the work of military engineers has been lost. Similarly, while their skills were indispensable their identities were seldom recorded until the later middle ages. Dr Peter Purton has tackled the vast range of sources to present as complete a picture as possible of this oft-overlooked aspect of war in the Middle Ages. Read more



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LEEDS IMC

It’s nearly time for the Leeds International Medieval Congress, 2-5 July. Keep an eye on our social media pages as we’ll be asking for your IMC top tips, dos and don’ts. Today’s tip is that Leeds will be busier than ever, so don’t leave it too late to get that book you’ve had your eye on. And if you are attending do please come and say hello, we’d love to see you.

SAFE FROM HARM?

Papal Protection and the Crusader


Papal Protection and the Crusader
When men left to go on Crusade they risked everything: their own lives, obviously, but also their wealth, property and the welfare of the families they left behind. Papal protection was a privilege devised to ensure the security of their estates and the safety of loved ones. But how did it work and how successful was it? Dr Danielle Park explains a crucial feature of the Crusades.
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THE NEGLECTED CHAPEL

The Parish and the Chapel


The Parish and the Chapel in Medieval Britain and Norway
While the parish church has long enjoyed close scholarly attention, the medieval chapel has been sorely neglected. No more, for Dr Sarah Thomas’s new book reveals how they served a far greater range of purposes than has previously been assumed and makes an eloquent case for their significance in the study of the medieval Church and Christianity. Read more

 

SAGAS AND HEROES

William Morris and the Icelandic Sagas


William Morris and the Icelandic Sagas
Dr Ian Felce’s recently published book examines William Morris’ fascination with Iceland’s medieval sagas, a fascination that inspired him to make two horseback tours through its stunning but hazardous interior. What was it that so captivated his imagination and so dramatically altered his idea of ‘the hero’? Read more