Category Archives: MEDIEVAL HISTORY

Magyars, Saracens and Vikings in 9th and 10th century Europe

Magyars, Saracens and Vikings in 9th and 10th century Europe


Three main groups – Magyars, Saracens and Vikings – launched raids on Europe in the 9th and 10th centuries, as well as being involved in trade. It was the Vikings who proved the most adaptable colonists. Settlements established by them in the north Atlantic and North Sea, Russia and the Mediterranean developed into strong independent states.

Fighting for love: Ulrich von Lichtenstein

Fighting for love: Ulrich von Lichtenstein

A name made famous by Hollywood, there was a real Ulrich von Lichtenstein. Born of a noble family in the Duchy of Styria (in what is now central Austria) some time around 1200, he was knighted along with 249 others at the betrothal of the daughter of the Duke of Austria. He served as an administrator in his native duchy, married and had children; his son, also named Ulrich, married a daughter of Conrad von Goldegg, a powerful vassal and administrator of the Archbishop of Salzburg. He died at the age of 78 and was buried in Sekau, the site of a Benedictine monastery.

The King Richard II’s Tomb

The King Richard II’s Tomb

When Richard II’s first consort, Anne of Bohemia, died in June 1394, his grief knew no bounds. He decided that unlike any previous king and queen of England, they should both be buried in the same tomb, and that on it their gilded effigies should lie (in the words of the contract with the coppersmiths) “crowned, side by side and clasping their right hands and holding sceptres in their left hands”.

Medieval Arms and Armoury

Medieval Arms and Armoury

European warriors of the early Middle Ages used both indigenous forms of military equipment and arms and armor derived from late Roman types. One of the most widely used types of helmet was the Spangenhelm. Body armor was usually either a short-sleeved mail shirt (byrnie), made up of interlocking iron rings, or a garment of overlapping scales of iron, bronze, or horn.

The Political Transformation of Medieval France

The Political Transformation of Medieval France

The first three decades of the 15th century were a time of civil war, military defeat, and political humiliation in France. The enfeebled monarchy, caught in a vise between England’s Henry V and Henry’s Burgundian ally Philip, went so far as to renounce the dauphin, the heir to the throne, and to bequeath the kingdom to Henry.