As usual, trying to answer these hypothetical questions will allow us to see a much bigger picture, and by the time you’re done reading this article you should know a lot more about medieval finance, theology and philosophy. For a skimmer’s convenience, I bolded keywords and juicy bits besides my juiciest conclusions at the end.
It’s about time I added to our previous list of the best medieval YouTube channels. A lot has changed since then, and here are more medieval mythbusters to binge on YouTube to absord that precious medieval knowledge. Feel free to go back and check out part one of this series.
When someone asked me how much a real sword costs and if you can buy one on Amazon, I did what I usually do whenever someone brings up swords and politely educated them on why historically accurate swords are the best. Now I want to take this chance to provide
Who was the god Scandinavians called Thor, really? And how does this medieval god compare to the modern superhero? To answer these questions we will analyse the work of Martin Arnold in his book Thor: Myth to Marvel. Then, to see how Thor was represented by contemporary medieval pagans we will analyse “The Saga of the People of Eyri.” After an analyses of the medieval Thor, it will then be possible to spot his differences and similarities to the modern Thor depicted in today’s popular culture, namely his first comic book appearances and the latest Marvel movie from 2017, Thor: Ragnarok.
Stone fortresses with curtain walls, keeps, gatehouses and postern gates have existed in Europe for thousands of years before the Middle Ages. For instance, Mycenae on Crete (1350 BC) has all the characteristics of a medieval castle. Despite this, many scholars agree that the Normans were the ones to popularize castles in Europe, let alone medieval Europe. After all, the British Isles did not see many castles being built of stone until after the Norman Conquest of 1066…
Today, dragons are everywhere. Dragons in the Middle Ages, too, were everywhere, but not on cotton T-shirts, video games and plastic cups from the dollar store. The medieval dragon existed in such things as heraldry, aquamanilia, architecture and folklore. Anyone can tell you what a modern fantasy dragon looks like, but do dragons in our society have the same function as dragons in the Middle Ages? What are the different magical and physical characteristics of dragons throughout history? In order to give these questions justice we’re forced to learn a lot about dragons as they were depicted in medieval Europe—learn how to tame them if you will. Then, we’ll have to remove ourselves from Europe to observe the majestic dragons of the East because it could potentially be argued that the dragons that swam and flew from Chinese, Persian and Turkish cultures did more to influence what we think of when we say “dragon” today than the dragons of ancient Greece and Rome. We’ll conclude by taking a look at a few modern fantasy dragons in popular entertainment and nitpick their differences from the dragons of the past.
Today the word “breakfast” gets shuttlecocked across American streets like coffee. Ah, there’s nothing like a mug of coffee at 4 a.m. with some jazz music. Coffee’s good with breakfast, too. Hey, wait. Is that why we don’t have that much evidence of people eating breakfast Middle Ages?–because they didn’t have coffee? That’s a deep, sociological question. Today, I just want to answer the question “did people eat breakfast in the Middle Ages?” Unfortunately, I won’t be able to yes or no. There are hundreds of different answers!