1001 CE to 1100 CE

Sites of conquest

A new series of articles in the online BBC History Magazine will cover famous historical sites. The first article looks at ten "places associated with the momentous events of 1066 and its aftermath."

Canterbury's oak rafters date to Norman times

Restoration work at England's Canterbury Cathedral has uncovered oak roof rafters dating to the time of William the Conqueror. While much of the cathedral's roof has been destroyed and rebuilt over the centuries, some of the 11th century timbers survive.

Fleamarket find might be Templar artifact

Christie's auction house in London is trying to verify claims that an ornately-decorated piece of wood, found at an English car boot sale, might be the door of a Templar tabernacle, dating from between 700 and 1200 C.E. (photo)

1,000-year-old tree mark discovered in Prague

Archaeologists have discovered a star-shaped tree mark near Celakovice in the Czech Republic. The mark, probably the oldest such mark ever discovered, is believed to have marked territory.

Fabric Dragon

Fabric Dragon sells many items, but of especial interest to most SCAdians are the linen threads in multiple weights and colors, silk threads in multiple weights, colors, and degree of twist, beads (including those small enough to use easily in embroidery) and pearls of various types.

BBC Radio 4 presents "Tales Before the Stave"

A thirty-minute podcast from BBC Radio 4 features the story of the Winchester Troper, a seminal musical book created around 1030 CE in Winchester, England.

Krazy Kat Fiberhaus

Purveyors of fine needlework supplies, Krazy Kat Fiberhaus carries all kinds of threads, patterns and notions usable and appreciated by the Historic needleworker. They have Sylke Gilt Twist, Slate Frames, fine linens and threads of silk, linen and gold.

Launceston Castle damaged by vandals

Officials at English Heritage are "very angry" over the vandalism of Launceston Castle in Cornwall. The 11th century structure was originally built by William the Conqueror's half-brother in 1075, and largely reconstructed in the 13th century. (video)

Fish shortage drove medieval fishermen to sea

A new study by James Barrett from Cambridge University's McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, shows that around 1,000 C.E., medieval people were forced to begin fishing in the ocean due to a shortage of fresh water fish.

BBC's Channel 4 takes on Hastings

In mid-May, 2009, Channel 4 of the BBC premiered a two-part mini-series dramatizing the events leading up to the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The film, 1066: the Battle for Middle Earth, was directed by Justin Hardy who was interviewed for the Telegraph.

Tulips brought to Europe by the Turks

New research by experts at the University of Cordoba and the School of Arabic Studies seems to indicate that the first tulips in Europe were brought to Islamic Spain by way of Byzantium. The bulbs could then have been brought to Holland, where they became the country's symbol.

Swedish parking marker found to be runestone

Rainy weather, washing mud from a parking lot marker in Sweden, brought about a near "religious experience" for Stockholm County Museum runic expert Lars Andersson, who was able to identify marks on the stone as runes.

Today in the Middle Ages: April 19, 1012

Ælfheah, Archbishop of Canterbury, was martyred on April 19, 1012 in Greenwich, England.

"Severed Ways" explores Viking discovery of America

Severed Ways: The Norse Discovery of America, a 2007 film written and directed by Tony Stone, tells the story of two Norsemen stranded in North America in the year 1007 who are forced to survive by their wits.

"Good" penny returns to Malmesbury Abbey

An 11th century silver penny stolen from Malmesbury Abbey has come home. The coin was stolen in June 2008 from a display case in the abbey.

Sewer construction unearths Roman and medieval settlements in Cumbria

Sewer construction near Penrith in northern England has uncovered a Roman settlement a mere meter beneath the soil. The project has also unearthed several medieval buildings, including a rare Grubenhauser. (photos)

"1066: the Movie" awaiting release

1066: the Movie, a film starring Gary Daniels and Martin Klebba, was scheduled for release in September 2008, but has yet to hit theaters. The website includes production information, a blog, a gallery and a really great poster.

Gold ring may have belonged to Norman royalty

British metal detector enthusiast Peter Beasley was intrigued recently when he pulled a heavy gold ring from the ground near Petersfield, England. Now experts believe that the ring may have belonged to Robert, the eldest son of William the Conquerer. (photo)

Spindle may hold "oldest runic inscription in Iceland"

An 11th century spindle, discovered recently in Reykjavík, Iceland, is inscribed with ruins which may be the oldest yet discovered in the country.

"Millennium" sheds light on the Dark Ages

Millennium, a new book by Tom Holland, takes a look at the Dark Ages with special focus on politics, religion and the combination of the two: the Crusades. Christina Hardyment of The Independent has a review.

Chinese Chess

Looking for a new period game - or an interesting A&S project? How about Tangut Chess, a game popular by the end of the Northern Song (960-1127) dynasty. The 32-piece set can be made from bronze or pottery.

Norman contributions to the English language ala Garrison Keillor

In his weekly podcast for September 24, 2008, humorist Garrison Keillor commemorates the 1066 Norman invasion of England with a discussion of how the French language affected food and cooking terms.

Early Buddhist paintings at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

An exhibit of early Buddhist manuscript paintings from India, many on dried palm leaves, is being hosted by New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. Early Buddhist Manuscript Painting: The Palm Leaf Tradition will be on display through March 22, 2009.

11th C Fatimid Rock Crystal auction after misidentification

A rare Islamic rock crystal ewer is reclassified after being sold as post-industrial French antique for about UK£200. It will auction at Christie's London this October for more than UK£3 million. It is one of eight known extant rock crystal ewers from the period. (picture)

Early medieval inscribed finger ring found in England

Antiquities specialist Brett Hammond was impressed with a medieval finger ring discovered by a metal detector from Hinckley, England. "It was clearly an important item of treasure. It is a gold ring possibly containing a rare black diamond," he said. (photo)

Castell Aberlleiniog to be rescued in Wales

"For over 20 years I have observed the progressive deterioration of this site as the mound suffered from erosion by livestock, and the masonry became increasingly unstable and overgrown by vegetation," said Mike Yates of Cadw, the Welsh historic monuments' agency, about Castell Aberlleiniog near Llangoed, which is being rescued from further deteoration.

Vikings not driven from Canada by the Thule

New research shows that Viking settlers in Newfoundland were not driven from the country by the native Thule, a native ancestor of the Inuits. Scientific re-dating has placed the native tribes in the area 150 years after the Viking settlements.

How to Make a Viking Spoon

On Instructables, Morfmir shows step-by-step instructions for making a wooden spoon with Viking era reproduction tools (or modern equivalents).

Alleged Bayeux vandal cleared

In an announcement at the major conference on the Bayeux Tapestry which took place recently at the British Museum, Anna Eliza Stothard was cleared of an accusation of vandalizing the tapestry.

Re-enacting medieval cavalry with Henrik Olsgaard

Finnvarr has posted an "account of Duke Henrik of Havn's participation in the reenactments at Hastings in 2000/2006" on his blog. The article discusses re-enacting the medieval cavalry.