Category Archives: Medieval cycle of life

Bald’s eye salve: a modern story

After remedies for head pain, the medical books turn to eye problems. It’s very clear that swollen and infected eyes were a serious issue in that time, because both books have a number of remedies. And here, we find a … Continue reading

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Medieval international merchants

International merchants were, of course, the largest sales ventures. They sent representatives to the larger regional/national fairs, but their chief trading occurred elsewhere. To go back to Charlemagne’s time, a group of Jewish merchants based around the Rhone River traveled … Continue reading

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Medieval merchants and regional fairs

Medieval traveling salesmen, 2 of 3: The middle range of traveling salesmen were merchants who worked within one region or nation, moving things farther than ordinary people could easily travel. They were not as limited by roads, since they could … Continue reading

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Medieval traveling tinkers and small merchants

Medieval traveling salesmen, 1st of 3: Medieval merchants came in sizes small, medium and large. The small ones did the thankless work of bringing small, cheap things to rural and even remote villages. They were up against two obstacles: lack … Continue reading

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Medieval traveling lives: masons

This fits into the Medieval Cycle of Life series, after the traveling minstrel. Today’s “Masonic Lodge” has no direct connection to the actual Freemasons of the Middle Ages, but some of the traits and tropes we associate with them, like … Continue reading

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Medieval craftsman’s wife

The life of a medieval woman in town is closer to our modern ideas than the other pathways (such as the castle lady or peasant’s wife). ┬áThis isn’t coincidental, since modern life developed from the roots of those medieval towns. … Continue reading

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Christine de Pizan

Around 1400, the most famous woman author was Christine de Pizan (or Pisan, both short for Pizzano, south of Bologna, Italy). Christine spent her life at the French court, originally moving there as an infant when her father was hired … Continue reading

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Heloise d’Argenteuil, an educated medieval woman

Following on my profile of the life of a male university graduate, I want to profile two highly educated women of the Middle Ages, whose lives turned out quite differently. First, since I mentioned her yesterday, Heloise d’Argenteuil. What we … Continue reading

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Early medieval ladies

This post is a follow-up to an earlier one about the lives of castle ladies. Prior to 1100, medieval ladies didn’t have castles, they had halls. There was one key difference that completely shaped the lady’s life. That is, instead … Continue reading

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Medieval law school in England

This entry fits into the “Medieval Cycle of Life” series first posted in January and February of 2013. It belongs in the set of entries that describe the growth of the medieval university: Beginning University, Living at A College, Notes … Continue reading

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