Medieval Ages

A marine archaeologist examines one of the engraved Purbeck gravestones recovered from the 13th-century Mortar Wreck.

England's Oldest Surviving Shipwreck Is a 13th-Century Merchant Vessel

Carrying a cargo of locally sourced limestone, the so-called Mortar Wreck likely sank off the Dorset coast during the reign of Henry III

Drawing of a woman being dragged to a ducking stool at a river in Ipswich, Suffolk, around 1600

When Authorities Dunked Outspoken Women in Water

In early modern England, women accused of being "common scolds" were immersed in rivers and lakes while strapped to contraptions known as ducking stools

Literary scholar Vanessa Braganza suggests that Catherine commissioned the pendant design as "a sign of her conviction of her own enduring legitimacy."

The Secrets of a Long-Overlooked Cipher Linked to Catherine of Aragon

Henry VIII's first wife may have commissioned the design as an act of defiance during the Tudor king's attempt to divorce her

Frontispiece; Title Page (1893), Edward Burne-Jones and William Morris for the Kelmscott Press

Medieval Art's Enduring Hold on Pop Culture

In a new exhibition at the Getty, prints and paintings from the Middle Ages sit beside pop culture artifacts

In 1547, Elizabeth's brother, 9-year-old Edward VI, ascended the throne. Then 13 years old, the princess found herself second in line to the crown.

The Royal Scandal That Rocked Elizabeth I's Teenage Years

A new Starz series, "Becoming Elizabeth," dramatizes the future queen's controversial relationship with her much-older stepfather, Thomas Seymour

Hieronymus Bosch, The Last Judgment, circa 1515

Inside Hieronymus Bosch's Surreal Visions of Heaven and Hell

A new exhibition in Budapest features almost 90 works by the Dutch artist and his peers

Drawing of an early medieval king eating and drinking at Tintagel Castle in England

New Research Suggests England's Early Medieval Rulers Had a Veggie-Based Diet

Two papers argue that these 5th- through 11th-century kings and queens mainly ate meat during special feasts thrown by their subjects

Alexander Skarsgård stars as Amleth, a Viking prince who seeks to avenge the murder of his father.

The History Behind Robert Eggers' 'The Northman'

The revenge saga blends traditional accounts with the supernatural to convey the lived experience of the Viking age

Most of the possibly royal graves rest in the center of square or rectangular enclosures like the one pictured here, at Plas Gogerddan in Wales.

Possible Royal Graves Dated to the Time of King Arthur Found in Great Britain

New research brings the number of potential burial sites of early medieval Celtic rulers from 2 to more than 20

St. Wystan’s church in Repton. In 873-874, a Viking army is believed to have entrenched in the garden. Right, Viking burial mounds in Heath Wood.

Digging Up the Rich Viking History of Britain

A massive 1,100-year-old graveyard leads to a surprising new view of the Nordic legacy in Britain

A full-scale replica of Notre-Dame’s Truss 6 in Washington, D.C. last summer.

How to Rebuild Notre-Dame Using 12th-Century Tools

In Washington, D.C., an innovative team of designers demonstrated how medieval techniques could be used to repair the Parisian landmark

Unlike St. Patrick, St. Brigid was actually born in Ireland.

Meet St. Brigid, Ireland's Only Woman Patron Saint

The fifth-century abbess is stepping out of the shadow of the better-known St. Patrick

Medieval manuscripts featuring stories about King Arthur and Camelot

How Much Medieval Literature Has Been Lost Over the Centuries?

A new analysis suggests that just 9 percent of manuscripts produced in Europe during the Middle Ages survive today

Flea-ridden rats in crowded medieval cities were the primary cause of Black Death infections in the 14th century, which historians believe killed off nearly half the European populaton. A new study argues, however, that the death toll may have in fact been way lower. 

The Black Death Wasn't as Deadly as Previously Thought, Research Suggests

Ancient pollen deposits reveal that some areas of Europe may have experienced a 'much lighter touch' of the disease, according to the study

The new Netflix series imagines what would have happened if Harald Hardrada (played by Leo Suter) were best buddies with Norse explorer Leif Erikson (Sam Corlett) and the lover of Leif’s sister, Freydís Eiríksdóttir (Frida Gustavsson).

The True History Behind Netflix's 'Vikings: Valhalla'

A spin-off of the long-running series "Vikings," the show follows a fictionalized version of Norwegian king Harald Hardrada

Melisende of Jerusalem (pictured at her coronation) and Zumurrud of Damascus represent two of the most powerful, best-documented ruling women of the medieval Middle East. 

The Women Rulers Whose Reigns Reshaped the Medieval Middle East

A new book details the lives of Melisende of Jerusalem, Zumurrud of Damascus and their powerful peers

No images of Licoricia of Winchester survive, so sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley based the statue's features on his daughter and grandson, both of whom are Jewish.

Meet the 'Most Important' Jewish Woman in Medieval England

A new statue honors Licoricia of Winchester, a 13th-century moneylender whose life illuminates the challenges faced by Jews at the time

An extremely rare Henry III gold penny discovered in a farm field in England could fetch more than $500,000 at auction this month.

Metal Detectorist Discovers One of England's Earliest Gold Coins in a Farm Field

The 13th-century gold penny found in southwestern Britain could sell for half a million at auction

Ingeborg Hornkjøl poses with a piece of wood inscribed with Nordic runes. 

Archaeologists Discover—and Start to Decode—Rare Medieval Runes

One of the newly unearthed objects, an inscribed bone, is the first of its kind found in Oslo in decades

In the largest-ever study of horse bones to date, researchers examined equine remains from 171 unique archaeological sites including castles and medieval horse cemeteries.

The Horses of Medieval Times Weren't Much Bigger Than Modern-Day Ponies

A study of the remains of 2,000 specimens reveals the steeds were around 4 feet 10 inches tall

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