1401 CE to 1500 CE

En tableau: the First Defenestration of Prague

Can it really be the Defenestration of Prague if it's done with Legos? Apparently so, with the complete scene created in the plastic bricks on the Blockland website.

Incan success at Machu Picchu may have been related to Medieval Warm Period

An article published in the "Climate of the Past Discussions", a discussion group of the European Geosciences Union, concludes that "a period of sustained aridity that began from AD 880, followed by increased warming from AD 1100 that lasted beyond the arrival of the Spanish in AD 1532" was partially responsible for the success of the Inca civilization during that period.

Remains of a Stirling knight

Researchers believe that the skeleton of a young man found at Stirling Castle in Scotland may be those of a knight killed in battle in the early 15th century. The bones were discovered in the castle's chapel in 1997.

British mother and son find US$400,000 treasure

Years of metal detecting have paid off for Mary Hannaby and her son, Michael of Hemel Hempstead, England. The two recently discovered a piece of gold, believed to be part of a reliquary or pendant buried four inches below the surface of a field in Hertfordshire.

How to cook a porpoise

Richard II's recipe for cooking a porpoise is now available online. The recipe is included in a new digitized version of The Forme of Cury, the 15th century text long used by historians to re-create medieval recipes. (video)

Five medieval skeletons found in Mickleham

Construction work on a new vestry at St Michael's Church in Mickleham, England has led to the discovery of five graves dating from at least the 15th century, one belonging to a small child. The graves are believed to mark the location of the medieval churchyard.

Gutenberg Bible extract used as book binding

A library assistant in Colmar, France has discovered what is believed to be an extract from the Gutenberg Bible being used as part of the binding of another book.

"Naked Mona Lisa" sparks controversy

Long hidden behind a panel, a portrait of a semi-nude woman bears a striking resemblance to Leonard Da Vinci's famous Mona Lisa. The painting was once believed to have been done by the Da Vinci, but now experts feel that it may have been inspired by a lost masterpiece. (photo)

15th century Redbook?

While doing research on medieval romance tales, Canadian professor James Weldon made a fascinating discovery: the first women's magazine. The manuscript, known as Biblioteca Nazionale, produced on paper in 1457, is a fascinating collection of recipes and romances aimed at the female reader. (photo)

Ripon limekiln is an "important find"

British archaeologists are excited about the discovery of a 500-year-old limekiln behind Ripon House in Leeds, England. Constructed in the mid-15th century, the kiln is one of the largest medieval structures ever found in England. (photo)

Armor photos from the Tinguely Museum

Richard Blackmoore reports that a collection of high resolution photos of 15th and 16th century armor are available to download from the Tinguely Museum website.

Pages from da Vinci's "Codex Atlanticus" unglued

A group of Benedictine nuns from the Abbey of Viboldone haave been working tirelessly for months to unbind Leonardo da Vinci's Codex Atlanticus, a collection of writings and drawings bound into a single volume in the 17th century by sculptor Pompeo Leoni.

Verrocchio sculptures by student da Vinci?

Were two of the sculptures in Andrea del Verrocchio's silver altar panel Beheading of the Baptist actually created by the artist's student assistant Leonardo da Vinci? Gary M. Radke, a professor of the humanities at Syracuse University, thinks so. The work will be on exhibit at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, GA.

Liturgical manuscripts and medieval miniatures at the Free Library of Philadelphia

The Rare Book Department of the Free Library of Philadelphia is the setting for an exhibition of liturgical music manuscripts dating from the 10th through 16th centuries. Cantate Domino: Medieval Music Manuscripts in the Free Library of Philadelphia, 900-1500 will be open until June 26, 2009.

Medieval Astronomy from Melk Abbey on APOD

An medieval manuscript page from the notes for an astronomy lecture by Magister Wolfgang de Styria offers a glimpse at pre-Renaissance thinking in the astronomical field.

Medieval design could be eco-house of the future

Engineers and architects at Cambridge University have constructed a prototype "eco-house" based on a 600-year-old design. The plan uses a domed technique developed in Spain called "timbrel vaulting" which retains the sun's heat and cools naturally in the summer. (photo)

School teaches late Middle Ages jousting

Knight School, a division of Historic Enterprises, is offering hands-on instruction in equestrian combat at regularly scheduled jousting classes. The classes offer school-provided horses but also welcome riders who have their own.

Today in the Middle Ages: April 15, 1489

Ottoman architect Koca Mi’mar Sinan Aga , usually referred to as Sinan, was born on April 15, 1489. His innovative approach was to transform the Ottoman civic and religious architecture of the Ottoman classical period.

Met offers treasures of the Korean Renaissance

Visitors to New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art will be treated to a small exhibit of ceramic jars, lacquer boxes, and scroll paintings from 15th - 17th century Korea when they encounter Art of the Korean Renaissance, 1400-1600. (photos)

Wedding at the House of Juliet

What could be more romantic than getting married at the site of the legendary Romeo and Juliet balcony scene? Nearly anything, if you are put off by star-crossed lovers parted by suicide, but Verona city officials are banking on the romantic appeal of the site for international weddings.

In 1492 Scotto sailed the ocean blue, laddie

According to Spanish historian Alfonso Ensenat de Villalonga, Christopher Columbus was born in Genoa, Italy to Scottish shopkeepers, and was christened Peter Scotto.

Sherwood "infested" by Robin Hood?

According to a 15th century history book, Robin Hood may not have been as popular with the common people as believed. According to art historian Julian Luxford, Robin and his merry men "infested" Sherwood Forest with their thieving ways.

irish armor

I am needing help finding the style or armor the Irish wore in the 14th century. I am new to the SCA and I am trying to create armor for my persona so that I can start fighting. Any and all help will be appreciated. Thanks, Aengus


I am looking for any sites that show what style armor the irish wore in the 14th century. Any help would be most appreciated. I am new to the SCA and I am trying to find out what armor to create for my persona so I can start fighting. Thanks, Aengus

Medieval postcards subject of lecture in Syracuse

On March 24, 2009, Kathryn M. Rudy, a world-renowned art historian, will discuss the history of the postcard, tracing its roots to the 15th century. The lecture will take place at 5:30 p.m. in room 107 of Syracuse University's Hall of Languages.

Sketch of da Vinci in middle age found

After months of restoration, a sketch, thought to be an early self portrait of Leonard da Vinci, has been discovered. The drawing was found was covered by handwriting. (video)

Teenage "witch" to receive Christian burial

Archaeologists in Kent, England have found the remains of a young girl buried in unconsecrated ground beneath a holly tree. They believe that the girl, whose head had been removed and buried beside the body, had been a criminal or accused of witchcraft.

Drought may have brought down Angkor Wat

Historians have long debated the cause of the collapse of the ancient city of Angkor in Cambodia. Now, through the study of tree rings, they believe that the city was brought low by a massive drought.

650-year-old perfume bottle survives the Black Death

Maev Kennedy takes a tour around the treasures of the Black Death exhibition at The Wallace Collection, London, including a tiny perfume bottle that was owned by a victim of a superstitious anti-plague pogrom.

"Macclesfield Alphabet Book" images on CR Blog

On the CR (Creative Review) Blog, Patrick has posted an illustrated discussion of the British Library's Macclesfield Alphabet Book, a pattern book "filled with designs for different styles of script, letters, initials and decorative borders."