Medieval History
500 AD to 1500 AD—the fall of the Western Roman Empire through the Renaissance

Blog Archives

The Rise and Fall of the Viking Crusades


by John Haywood The Wendish Crusade In 1144, the crusaders lost the key city of Edessa in Syria to the Turks. Pope Eugenius III’s response to this setback was to call the Second Crusade, the first major crusading expedition to

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Posted in Medieval History

The Lewis Chessmen: Brexit and a New North Sea Style

Viking helmets. By Helgi Halldórsson from Reykjavík, Iceland. Image is in the public domain via

by Nancy Marie Brown Look at a map and remember the key position this area enjoyed from the 8th to the 13th centuries. From the beginning of the Viking Age in 793, the sea road connected these places we think

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Posted in Medieval History

Thomas Farriner: The Man Who Started Great Fire of London

Thomas Farriner

by Rebecca Rideal As the sun set on another hot day, an easterly wind danced through the capital, weaving its way westward. From Islington, Samuel Pepys and his wife journeyed home after watching a new puppet show on Moorfields before

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Posted in Medieval History, Modern History

Historic Divorce Facts: 10 Reasons Why It Ended In Divorce

It Ended Badly; William S. Burroughs; Divorce

by Jennifer Wright Three Unusual Historic Reasons For Divorce In 1613 the Countess of Essex demanded a divorce from her husband because, as her father quipped, “the Ear has no ink in his pen.” Essex and the court decided that he was

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Posted in Ancient History, Medieval History, Modern History

Ivory Vikings: Go Berserk in 5 Easy Lessons

Ivory Vikings

by Nancy Marie Brown 1. Take off your shirt. “Berserk” comes from an Old Norse word meaning “bare-shirt” or, maybe, “bear-shirt.” Snorri Sturluson, the 13th-century Icelander who is our main source of Viking lore, isn’t clear (maybe on purpose). In

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Posted in Medieval History

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