Category Archives: Academic life

Some thoughts on medieval urban equines

in the late Middle Ages, the horse became more widely popular as a means of transportation than ever before in history… (Fabienne Meiers, “Equestrian Cities: The Use of Riding Horses and Characteristics of Horse Husbandry in Late Medieval Urban Agglomerations,” … Continue reading

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The Less Glamorous Equines

“Horses have the speed and spirit, but for strength, endurance, and steadiness, they are often the inferior of other species and varieties. That so much depended upon four-legged freight makes it something of a surprise how neglected it is in … Continue reading

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The Hardest Part of Producing the Horse History Volume was the Introduction…

“…It is necessary for any scholar working on the pre-modern period, irrespectively of his or her discipline, to have some understanding of the horse in the [pre-modern] society…” (“Introduction,” The Horse in Premodern European Culture, ed. A. Ropa and T. Dawson) Writing … Continue reading

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Accomplishing the Mission: a prehistory to The Horse in Premodern European Culture

In July 2015, two medievalists met at one of the social spaces of the International Medieval Congress at Leeds. It must have been a reception, with wine flowing as usual, as the two medievalists who did not know each got … Continue reading

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Horse History Sessions at IMC 2019

Session 517: Horses to the East Tue, 02 July – 09.00-10.30 Jürg Gassmann, Horses in Western Asia in the Transition from Late Antiquity to ca. 1000 CE Hylke Hettema, A Medieval Genealogy of the Arab Horse Alexia-Foteini Stamouli, Equids in … Continue reading

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Session: Arthurian Horses

Organiser: Dr Anastasija Ropa Participants: Dr Joseph M. Sullivan Dr Eleana Creazzo Dr Sandy Feinstein   Horses in the Middle Ages were a means of transport, but, in the world of chivalry, they were also powerful symbolic vehicles. An Arthurian … Continue reading

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CFP: The THE MEDIEVAL HORSE Sessions at the International Medieval Congress 2018 at Leeds, 2-5 July 2018

Palfreys and rounceys, hackneys and packhorses, warhorses and coursers, not to mention the mysterious ‘dung mare’ – they were all part of everyday life in the Middle Ages. Every cleric and monk, no matter how immersed in his devotional routine … Continue reading

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What did medieval people know about Hungary?

What do the Old Norse sagas, the chronicle narrative of Jean Froissart and the Old Serbian annals have in common? How about the Dominican collection of pious exempla by Jacobus de Cessolis, Liber de moribus? Well, to give you yet another clue, think of the late French Arthurian romance of Melyador and the anonymous fifteenth-century Middle English metrical romance Capystranus. Still no nearer to the answer? Hungary and the Hungarians! Surprising as it may sound, Hungary makes a frequent and variegated appearance in a variety of medieval narrative sources across Europe, from Iceland to Italy, not to mention Germany, France, England and such close neighbours as Poland and Serbia. Continue reading

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What is an Illuminated Charter?

What is a charter? What is an illuminated charter? Each national tradition of scholarship has their own approaches. Thus, one possibility may be to include everything produced in the chancery into the category of charters. Another approach would be to limit the scope of inquiry based on formal features: a document on one page, with signatures or other subscriptions, sealed or having place for a seal. Yet a third possibility is to make the analysis functional: as advised by a certain lawyer, a legal document would be any document that would result in certain action, the imposition of legal obligation, etc. In particular, indulgencies, though envisaging a contract of non-material kind, fit the functional definition well. Continue reading

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Illuminated Charters and Digital Humanities – A Conference Report

What is an illuminated charter? This is the question me and Edgar unfailingly heard from friends and relatives when we told them we are going to Vienna to a conference on Illuminated Charters. I must confess that I was puzzled and mystified when I first read the call for papers ‘Illuminated Charters: From the Margins of two Disciplines to the Core of Digital Humanities’. This may have been the reason I enlisted my co-author’s and husband’s help and sent a proposal to the conference organisers, on ‘The Functions of Illuminated Charters from Latvian and Lithuanian Archives in European Context’. Continue reading

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