Middle Ages

10 Stories

Flecks of Blue on Old Teeth Reveal a Medieval Surprise

Discovery suggests women worked as top artists in Middle Ages more often than thought

(Newser) - They couldn't figure out the blue. Scientists studying tartar from the teeth of medieval skeletons hoped to learn a thing or two of about diets of the Middle Ages. But when they put the teeth and jaw of one woman under a microscope, they were surprised to see hundreds... More »

600-Year-Old Scroll Has Game of Thrones Link

Canterbury Roll is being published online for the first time

(Newser) - A 600-year-old scroll describing the wars that inspired Game of Thrones might not be done making its mark on history. For the first time, the Canterbury Roll—detailing England's history until the Middle Ages—is being published online, making it accessible to the world, reports News.com.au . (The... More »

Mass Grave Found Under Paris Supermarket

'We expected it to have a few bones,' says Monoprix manager

(Newser) - Good thing shoppers didn't know about this: Archaeologists digging under a Paris supermarket have found more than 200 skeletons, most of them buried neatly in a mass grave, France 24 reports. Management at the Monoprix supermarket wanted the basement cleared for redevelopment, but little did they know: "We... More »

Expert: Mystery Sword Was Ivan the Terrible's

Russian archaeologist says it fell during a historic battle

(Newser) - A medieval mystery sword found nearly 40 years ago in Siberia belonged to the notorious Ivan the Terrible, if a rather colorful theory can be believed. Scholars have long wondered how the 12th-century blade—which looks central European by design and was later adorned with Norse runes and a silver... More »

Search Begins for Battlefield Lost for Centuries

Battle of Brunanburh helped define English, Scottish identities

(Newser) - Scotland is poised to vote on independence this year—and before it does, researchers are hoping they'll be able to track down the site of a battle at the root of the English-Scottish divide. There are more than 40 sites across Britain where experts have suggested the vicious Battle... More »

Turin Shroud One of 40 Fakes: Historian

Antonio Lombatti: false shrouds got around in Middle Ages

(Newser) - The Shroud of Turin is not only fake, it's one of 40 false shrouds that circulated during Medieval times, according to an Italian expert. Citing the work of a 19th-century French historian, Antonio Lombatti claims that burial cloths were fairly common in the old Christian world, the Daily Mail... More »

Get Ready for the New Middle Ages

Essay: The world's power structure will look much like the 12th century's

(Newser) - To get an idea of how the 21st century will play out, it might help to look back 1,000 years or so, writes Parag Khanna in the Financial Times . "The world we are moving into in 2011 is one not just with many more prominent nations, but one... More »

'Robin Hood Was a Loan Shark'

He quivered over interest rates

(Newser) - He robbed from the rich, but Robin Hood didn't just give it away to the poor—he loaned them money at stiff interest rates like some kind of medieval loan shark, claims a new book. One of the earliest historical references to the outlaw of Sherwood Forest, a ballad from... More »

Vatican Goes to Confessional in an Art Museum

Church reveals Inquisition artifacts

(Newser) - Sure, thousands of accused witches and blasphemers were burned and tortured during the Roman Catholic Church’s centuries-long Inquisition in the Middle Ages—but, with the help of a new art exhibition, the Vatican hopes to show that it wasn't so bad after all, Newsweek reports. The “Rare and... More »

I Now Pronounce You Knight and Knight

15th-century Europe allowed civil unions

(Newser) - The 21st-century social and political trend of same-sex civil unions has roots that go back a bit beyond Stonewall—to the Middle Ages. A history professor who analyzed legal documents and gravesites says medieval law was flexible enough to allow for a variety of non-nuclear family structures, including gay unions,... More »

10 Stories