Questions tagged [middle-ages]

The Middle Ages is a periodisation of European history, encompassing the period from the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century to the Renaissance in the 15th century.

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1answer
143 views

In the Middle Ages - 18th century, how long would it take for a blacksmith forge a regular farming scythe to a war scythe?

Whenever I look up how long it took for a blacksmith to certain tools or weapons, I just get information on forging swords. Let's say a peasant is trying to make his scythe efficient for self-defense ...
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Did the Danes sack Hamburg after the conquest of Hedeby in 983?

In 983, the Danes reconquered the southern Schleswig area from the Germans. Some sites claim that the Danes conquered Holstein as well during this invasion and even sacked Hamburg in cooperation with ...
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What are some of the earliest examples of welfare states?

I was reading about Welfare States and came across this on Wikipedia: Emperor Ashoka of India put forward his idea of a welfare state in the 3rd century BCE. [...] The concepts of welfare and ...
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253 views

Why did so many Saxons emigrate to England?

I read some interesting DNA research recently showing that vikings left little or no DNA traces in the population of present day UK but Saxons on the other hand left a huge imprint. It amazes me that ...
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Did really all people in the Mongolian empire never bathed? [closed]

I was interested by the Mongolian empire lately, but I'm kind of upset after I read that the Mongols never bathed. Does this mean that all the people that lived in the Mongolian empire never bathed? I ...
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How were taxes collected for traveling merchants in the middle ages?

I've done research on taxation in the middle ages. I found this answer particularly helpful. (What was the average percentage of taxes in Europe during the Middle Ages?). It mentions that merchants ...
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Why (are/)were food tasters human?

In the TV series The Borgias, there were people who tasted food or drink for others (eg pope, queen, king) just in case there would be poison. Looking this up on wiki, I find that there really were ...
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Which English king voided noble land claims after a certain date?

If my memory holds, a medieval English king ruled that noble lands were falsely held and should be returned to the crown. Parliament, of course, rejected this seizure. King and parliament compromised ...
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What is the pre-schism Christian church called today?

I've come upon numerous instances where a pre-11th century person or artifact is associated with either the Orthodox or Catholic church. The most recent example is in Francis Fukuyama's "The ...
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What criteria are used to determine the popularity of Medieval European rulers?

It is relatively common to see certain monarchs described as "popular" while others are "unpopular". It confounds me as to what specific evidence has been used to determine this, ...
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What are the highest and biggest half-timbered buildings built during medieval era?

I'm interested in any part of present Europe, let's say before the fall of Constantinople (1453 AD). Also, if you can show me a drawing or a picture (if these buildings are still there), I would ...
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Did 12th century French nobles really sleep in the great hall of the castle? [closed]

I've been on so many sites and each one seems to tell a different story. Some say that nobles had their own bedrooms (evidenced by the fact that castles had bedrooms) but I have also seen people say ...
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What was the aftermath of a battle in the Middle Ages? How did wounded soldiers proceed?

The Red Cross was founded by 1859 over these circumstances: Until the middle of the 19th century, there were no organized and/or well-established army nursing systems for casualties and no safe and ...
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How common or acceptable was it for a female yeoman or peasant in 14th century Germany to move around alone?

My query is specifically about an early teenage yeoman's daughter in what is modern day Saxony-Anhalt region in Germany. My period is the turn of the 14th Century. From my reading in medieval ...
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What percentage of people in 14th century England owned any armour? [closed]

Original: What percentage of England's 14th-15th century population actually owned or wore armour? Comments: I am particularly interested in 14th century England when asking this question. Was leather ...
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How did the layout of a Medieval European village typically change as it grew into a town?

Some of the research I've done so far WordlbuidingSE: How did the layout of a village change over time? This question was too broad, it's now more specific: It is not about settlements that were ...
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Is there a Welsh or Irish equivalent to the Declaration of Arbroath or Magna Carta?

Is there any pre-modern document (or was there any, if it didn't survive) in Welsh or Irish history, which is broadly equivalent in intention and purpose to the Declaration of Abroath or the Magna ...
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How common was marriage between nobles and peasants in the Middle Ages?

How common was it during the Middle Ages for European nobility to marry peasants or serfs? I am aware that during the era, the institution of marriage was considered a severely practical matter ...
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Are there historical texts in England querying where Roman structures came from?

I watched a film recently called King Arthur, showing London post Rome (guessing set in Middle Ages with modern-ish buildings but still with some Roman buildings / walls showing. It got me thinking: ...
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Were the 1400s-1600s really not part of the “Middle Ages”? [closed]

I read something confusing on Wikipedia and an answer on Stack Exchange today: No terrestrial globes from Antiquity or the Middle Ages have survived. Then two paragraphs later: The earliest extant ...
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What language(s) were spoken in 11th century Romania?

Curious to know what languages would've been spoken and used in correspondences during this time, specifically in Transylvania.
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How many barons did Magna Carta apply to? [closed]

How many barons had their rights improved by Magna Carta when it was signed in 1215? And how did this number evolve later? The supervising council consisted of 25 barons, but I presume more barons ...
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In Europe, why were there few portraits showing a real likeness of the subject before the 15th century?

According to the Wikipedia page on portrait painting in the middle ages, it was not until after 1350 that portraits ‘became clear likenesses’. This seems to be confirmed, for England at least, by the ...
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What was the fighting style and equipment of 13th century Eastern European Baltic and Slavic cavalry?

I want to know about fighting styles and equipment of fighting men roughly around 13th century in the Baltic/Slavic area of Europe. I'd particularly like to find out about cultures that were prominent ...
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Where in a city would a cathedral be built?

I am creating a medieval style village in a video game I am developing. Trying to be as accurate as possible I have studied the basic form Gothic Cathedrals and come to a pretty good understanding. ...
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Why did Charlemagne retreat after the Battle of Pamplona?

After Charlemagne defeated the Christian Basques in Pamplona, why did he retreat through Roncevaux Pass (thereby setting himself up for ambush) instead of going on to conquer more of Iberia? "After ...
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What determined who would be on the front lines of a large infantry engagement? [duplicate]

In Ancient and Middle Aged European Armies, what decided whether a soldier was at the front lines or just in the normal center-back? Was it a status symbol or honor to be in the front lines? Please ...
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Did Kublai Khan's army consist largely of Mongol warriors or native Chinese?

Kublai's army is always referred to as a 'Mongol' army but I suspect that after the initial conquest of China, his army consisted largely of native Chinese. Is this correct? Did the Japanese and ...
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How was law enforcement handled in medieval China before professional police?

This question came from: How was law enforcement handled in large US cities before professional police? China (Zhōng Gúo 中国) has had very large cities with more than a million people since the early ...
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Did medieval Europeans really walk around barefoot in winter?

Luaan posted a comment on a question, as follows (emphasis mine): Take an old-school shoe with no rubber, and you'll see that it's extremely slippery on wet surfaces - medieval Europeans went ...
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Were Medieval Islamic peoples in Northern Eurasia given religious dispensations due to the long diurnal cycles?

Christian troops in Northern Europe were given Papal dispensation to allow them to follow religious practices properly during the long(er) diurnal cycle at those latitudes. Were Medieval Islamic ...
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How did (riverine) toll castles operate?

Toll Castle A toll castle (WP) was a castle built either on a river, lake, or road intended to guard that trade route: Such castles were usually placed at strategic locations, such as border ...
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Did the Catholic Church ban adoption in the Middle Ages?

In the book Contours of the World Economy (2007), by Angus Maddison, it says: The adoption of Christianity as a state religion in 380 AD led to basic changes in the nature of European marriage, ...
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Has an heir ever made the country believe the current ruler died in order to take over the throne?

Before the invention of the semaphore and the telegraph, a message couldn't travel faster than the speed of a horse (or maybe a messenger pigeon or something along those lines - still pretty slow). ...
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Did people shoot from both sides of the bow in medieval times?

Most modern archers are taught to shoot with Mediterranean style; that is, putting the arrow on the left side of the bow (if they're right handed) and pulling the string with 3 fingers. Some claim ...
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Are there historical statistics about the number of market towns?

As a way to understand changes in the middle ages, I want to know the development of market towns. Particularly, I am looking for the increase in their number, organised by country and period (e.g. ...
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Why didn't the Black Death made the peasants more desperate and more accepting of exploitation? [closed]

The Black Death is said to have made labor more expensive and the peasants free. But why hasn't the opposite happened?
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Was the Bundesbrief a forgery?

Steinberg (2015, Why Switzerland?) writes: The famous Bundesbrief of 1291 is one of many ‘Fälschungen’ – forgeries which carbon-dating has shown to be from a later period. But briefly googling, it ...
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What was the military makeup of the Baltic tribes/Lithuania from 1200 to 1500 AD?

There is quite a lot written on the Teutonic Order and its military, but I'm having a harder time finding any good English sources on the military of one of its chief foes, Lithuania and the other ...
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Are there 15th or 16th century English sources that exemplify Empress Matilda as an impediment to having a Queen Regnant?

I'm reading Alison Weir's 'Elizabeth of York', and she makes claims as to why Elizabeth of York couldn't succeed to the throne after Richard III which are not supported by evidence. Legally, there ...
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How would an early Medieval German market have looked?

I am trying to find sources on how a medieval German market would have looked. Any artwork (painting, wood carving, wood print) would be perfect, but even just a description would already be great. My ...
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How popular was Arabic in Syria before Islamic conquest?

Before the Islamic conquest of Syria and the whole Levant, how popular was the Arabic language there? Are there any resources show what the percentage of Arabic in that region is as well?
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How expensive were castles? And how were the costs distributed?

In, Castles, Battles, Bombs: How Economics Explained Military History, I came across this passage : "The cost lay mostly in direct labor cost, as most labor had to be paid. (In contrast, raw material ...
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Did Aurangzeb issue a farman promising 4 Rs for all males that convert and 2 Rs for females?

I found a reference to this farman here (first link) But I can't find the source of the author (or if its authentic). Is it from an akhbar or from a biography of Aurangzeb? Its mentioned as a farman ...
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When and how did classical mythology subjects start to appear in art in medieval/Renaissance Europe?

All early medieval Europe art objects I am aware of are either about the Christian subjects or about the history (chronicles etc.). Classical mythology was obviously known in Europe before, see e.g. ...
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How frequently did monasteries attack other monasteries in Early Medieval Western Europe?

Recently, I saw this passage in M & H. Whittock, ‘The Viking Blitzkrieg’ (referring to Ireland) of the 113 attacks on monasteries between 795 and 820, only twenty-six were carried out by ...
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How did the Hansa organize river trade in the 14th and 15th centuries?

How did the Hansa accommodate the transition from sea to river trade along a trade route? Would river travel have been controlled by one group of people, e.g., Guild of the River Oder Merchants? Would ...
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Were eastern weapons ever seen in medieval Europe and western weapons ever seen in medieval Asia? [closed]

Like could some trader in medieval France be selling a katana or urumi amongst his wares that he obtained in his travels? Could a merchant in Japan have a zweihander or flamberge in his collection?
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What were the required conditions to be accepted by a university in Medieval times?

What were the conditions to be fulfilled for a free man in the (LATE) Medieval ages, to be accepted by a university as a student?
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Are there thirteenth century sources linking the Fifth Crusade to the Book Of Daniel?

Are there any thirteenth century sources (Christian, Islamic, or Jewish) linking (the timing of) the fifth crusade to a possibly self-fulfilling prophecy1 from (the eighth chapter2 of) the Book of ...

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