The carroballista was a Roman artillery weapon which used torsion to propel bolts or stones over several hundred metres. They were in use from the 3rd century BCE to the 4th century CE.
The Getty Museum and British Museum have published two cookbooks for those wanting to try recipes dating back to the Middle Ages or ancient times. The Medieval Cookbook, by food hisorian Maggie Black offers collection of medieval recipes, but a social history of the time. This revised edition has eighty recipes, drawn from the earliest English cookbooks of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, are presented in two formats: the original Middle English version and one adapted and tested for the modern cook.
The Getty Research Institute launched a new website last week, the Getty Research Portal, which promises to provide universal access to digitized texts in the field of art and architectural history.The Getty Research Portal is a free online search gateway that aggregates descriptive metadata of digitized art history texts, with links to fully digitized copies that are free to download.
How much were two women worth in 11th century Iberia? For the Vikings the price was a blanket of wolf skin, a sword, a shirt, three scarves, a cow and some salt.This fascinating story is part of research done by Helio Pires from the New University of Lisbon. His article, “Money for Freedom: Ransom Paying to Vikings in Western Iberia”, appears in the latest issue of Viking and Medieval Scandinavia.
Conservation experts in Norway are conducting tests to see if a solution can be found on how to save important archaeological finds from the Viking Age that were discovered in Oseberg in 1904.Researchers from the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo, working closely with Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB), have been studying ancient wooden Viking artefacts at the synchrotron radiation source BESSY II.
A recent article on sexuality and childbirth in early medieval Ireland reveals some surprising attitudes towards abortion held among the Christians during this period, and that hagiographical texts recount four Irish saints performing abortions.Of Vanishing Fetuses and Maidens Made-Again: Abortion, Restored Virginity, and Similar Scenarios in Medieval Irish Hagiography and Penitentials, by Maeve Callan, appears in the latest issue of the Journal of the History of Sexuality.
A 14th century manuscript containing the Laws of Hywel Dda is set to go up for auction next month, and is expected to sell for between £500,000-700,000. Sotheby’s London will offer the medieval Welsh manuscript as part of its sale of Western Manuscripts and Miniatures to be held on Tuesday, 10th July 2012,.
Hexham Abbey in northeast England has been granted £1.8m from the Heritage Lottery Fund for a restoration of the Abbey’s medieval monastery buildings.The restoration project includes the creation of a state-of-the-art visitor centre and community facilities within the former monastic complex adjoining the 7th century abbey church which dominates the heart of Hexham.
A recently published book is offering readers a glimpse into how medieval Muslims debated their own religion. Abu Hatim al-Razi: The Proofs of Prophecy offers an English translation of a debate between two celebrated figures of the medieval Islamic era who diverge on notions of prophecy, miracles and the origins of science.
By Matt ShipmanPerhaps it is fitting that students and scholars interested in the medieval world have to grapple with fiefdoms in order to find information dating to the period – though that doesn’t make it any less frustrating. But the days of searching through scattered online resources will soon be history.
While it might seem that disease and war made it unlikely that someone would survive to old age in ancient and medieval times, many men and women did live on into their 60s, 70s and even older. A recently published book, On Old Age: Approaching Death in Antiquity and the Middle Ages, explores some aspects of being elderly hundreds of years ago.
People can now explore St Andrews Cathedral, Scotland’s largest medieval church, as it looked in the Middle Ages, through a new online portal created by the University of St Andrews.Visitors will be able to create their own avatars and navigate their way around the online reconstruction, which shows the Cathedral as it was 700 years ago.
Over 239 finds dating back from the Bronze Age to the medieval period were unveiled this week as the annual Treasure Trove Report was presented to the Scottish Parliament. Discoveries include a silver seal matrix from the 12th century, a Roman eagle head and a complete set of trade weights from the 18th century.
A medieval village, set in the Tuscan hills of Italy among castles and monasteries, can be yours for €2.5 million. Pratariccia, which is situated about 25 miles east of Florence, has now been put on sale through ebay, the popular online shopping website.The village consists of 25 homes and eight hectares of land.
Oar walking, underwater wrestling and horse fighting – historian examines the sports and games of the Vikings
Playing ball games is an activity played by children around the world. While today’s parents might worry that their sons and daughters might get scrapes and bruises, in the Viking world such a game could end with an axe being driven into an opponent’s head.This detail comes from a new article, ‘What the Vikings did for fun?
As the movie Brave draws in big crowds around the world, Scotland is set to take advantage of this new attention to showcase its medieval heritage. Two important exhibits will be taking place next year at the National Museum of Scotland, while construction is underway to create a visitors centre at the site of the Battle of Bannockburn.
The Jewish Museum in New York will be featuring over 60 medieval Hebrew, Arabic, and Latin manuscripts this fall as it presents a new exhibition based on works found in the Bodleian Library at Oxford University. Crossing Borders: Manuscripts from the Bodleian Libraries will be running from September 14, 2012 through February 3, 2013.
More than 1700 medievalists, including jousting knights, storytellers and harpists, will descend on Leeds next week for the 18th International Medieval Congress.The Congress, organised by the Institute for Medieval Studies at the University of Leeds, is the biggest academic event of its kind in the UK and the largest medieval-themed academic conference in Europe.
One of the most important historians of the Anglo-Norman world, Professor Marjorie Chibnall, passed away last month at the age of 96. Her career included teaching at the universities of Cambridge, Southampton and Aberdeen, and among her honours was being a Fellow of the British Academy and appointed to the Order of the British Empire in 2004.
An important medieval Welsh manuscript is coming home after the National Library of Wales and the Heritage Lottery Fund pooled resources to be the winning bidder at an auction yesterday in London.The Boston Manuscript of the Laws of Hywel Dda was sold for £541,250. The Library will be showcasing the purchase to the public for a short exhibition – 23 July – 10 August – and then it will be taken into the care of the Library’s conservators to be rebound and digitised.
Philippa Langley on behalf of the Archaeological Search for Richard III, is asking for pledges in order to raise £10,000 for a dig to search for the lost grave of Richard III. She writes:An archaeological dig is scheduled to take place this summer in Leicester, seeking the last resting place of Richard III, and hoping to find and re-inter his remains with proper solemnity.