1401 CE to 1500 CE

Talking Richard III

In a podcast for the University of Leicester, Dr Sarah Knight and Dr Mary Ann Lund both from School of English, discuss the recent discovery of the remains of King Richard III and how it will change the relationship between history, literature and archaeology.

Medieval textile sources online

Manchester University in England has created a searchable website of sources for medieval textiles and clothing. The lexis of cloth and clothing in Britain c. 700-1450: origins, identification, contexts and change collects documentation from "diverse academic disciplines: archaeology, archaeological textiles, art history, economic history, literature, languages."

Richard III letter auctioned for UK£35,000

A rare document bearing the signature of Richard III before he was king was auctioned recently, bringing nearly UK£35,000. The document signed "R. Gloucestre" was written when the duke was in his twenties and involves a "land dispute between Ralph Neville, 2nd Earl of Westmorland, and some of his tenants."

Treasure shoe found in Rotterdam

Dutch archaeologists were surprised by the recent discovery of a shoe, dating to the 15th or 16th century, during excavation of a wall in Rotterdam's town hall. More interesting still was that the shoe was stuffed with 477 silver coins. (photo)

Scoliosis and its medieval cure

The discovery of the remains of King Richard III of England has led to the discussion of the king's scoliosis, "a lateral or side-to-side curvature of the spine," easily seen in the skeleton, and the techniques that would have been available to "cure" it.

Livres de perchage chronicle Guernsey properties

For years, Guernsey resident Hugh Lenfestey spent time collecting detailed local manorial records and creating a map of the island's fiefs. After his death, his family has donated his records, dating from the 15th century, to the Island Archive. (photos)

Medieval burial shows love that outlasts death

Two skeletons in a grave in Romania have been found buried together holding hands. The skeletons were probably buried between 1450 and 1550.

North Yorkshire claims Richard III

"Why should we trust them? They misplaced him for 500 years," says Conservative Councillor Tom Fox of the Scarborough Borough Council about his objection to Richard III's burial in Leicester, England. (video)

Scots mercenary tradition

Since the Middle Ages, Scottish men have been involved in military pursuits, often on foreign soil. Fierce fighters, especially from the western islands, were particularly prized by the armies of Denmark, the Netherlands, Spain and France. Steven McKenzie of the BBC looks at their history.

Richard on the couch

Now that Richard III's body has been identified, experts are probing his mind. In a paper presented March 2, 2013 at the University of Leicester, Professor Mark Lansdale and forensic psychologist Dr Julian Boon offered an analysis of Richard III's character.

European debt crisis - past and present

The debt woes of Cyprus and Greece, along with other European countries, have garnered headlines in recent days, but the stories are not new. Renaissance Florence had its own debt crisis, with a solution that looks surprisingly modern.

Who's the rightful British monarch?

Is Queen Elizabeth II the rightful ruler of Great Britain? Tony Robinsons doesn't think so. He explains in a 48-min. documentary produced for Channel 4.

Ransom profitable for medieval rank-and-file

History has recorded that the ransom of kings and nobles was a popular way for armies to raise money during the Middle Ages, but new research shows that the practice may have also been popular among common soldiers.

"Princes in the Tower" to remain unidentified - for now

Shakespeare wrote that Richard III plotted the deaths of his young nephews in the Tower of London, a theory touted by the Tudors but never confirmed. In the 17th century, the bones of two young children were found in the Tower and were reburied in Westminster Abbey as the princes, Edward V and Richard Duke of York.

Albrecht Dürer in Washington

The works of German Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer are being showed in an exhibit at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. Holland Cotter, of the New York Times Art and Design section, looks at the artist and his work.

Remains of Teutonic knights identified in Poland

The remains of three medieval Grand Masters of the Teutonic Knights, unearthed in Poland in 2007, have been identified. The men were named Werner von Orseln, Ludolf Koenig, and Heinrich von Plauen.

Chinese coin found in Kenya suggests medieval trade route

Archaeologists have unearthed a 15th century Chinese coin on the Kenyan island of Manda. This find predates European exploration of Asia, indicating the Chinese may have traded directly with Africa.

Early Renaissance Art at the Art Gallary of Ontario

The birth of the Renaissance in Florence is the subject of an exhibition at the Art Gallary of Ontario with the exhibition Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art. The exhibit will be on display March 16 – June 16, 2013.

A Grave! A Grave! My Kingdom for a Grave!

Divisive arguments, including death threats, mar the decision on where to bury the remains of Richard III.

Car crash damages Curson Lodge in Ipswich, England

A minor automobile accident has damaged the entrance and corner post of Curson Lodge, Ipswich's "finest" Tudor house. The building dates to 1480 and was a guesthouse of the Curson House estate owned by Cardinal Thomas Wolsey.

Proposed tomb for Richard III

The Richard III Society has submitted a proposed tomb to hold the recently-identified remains of King Richard III. While no site was specified for it, the "limestone monument would blend modern and medieval style decorations to reflect the king's life." (photo)

"Mini dome" may be clue to Brunelleschi building secrets

A team of Italian archaeologists has uncovered the remains of a "mini dome" during excavations to expand the museum of Florence’s cathedral, designed by Filippo Brunelleschi in the 15th century. The structure might be a scale model of the cathedral and the first use of a building technique in Italy.

The face of Richard III

Now that Richard III has been offically identified, millions of readers are seeking to learn more about the English king. An extremely-detailed article on the Daily Mail website follows the saga of Richard from the discovery of his bones to the reveal of his appearance through facial reconstruction. (photos)

Remains of King Richard III found

DNA analysis has confirned that the skeleton found buried underneath a parking lot in Leicester, England are those of King Richard III. The king, who died in 1485, was demonized in literature and in history as the man who killed two young princes in the Tower of London.

Hope for the ancient manuscripts of Timbuktu

Last week news outlets reported that militant Islamic rebels fleeing Timbuktu in Mali had torched a new library, destroying many of the city's famed ancient books. Preservationists and the Mali government are now reporting that many of the manuscripts were hidden in a safe house before the attack.

Recreating the Blue Boar Inn

A team of archaeologists and academics in Leicester, England have digitally recreated the Blue Boar Inn where Richard III spent the night before the battle of Bosworth, where he met his fate. The inn was demolished in the 19th century and is currently the site of a Travelodge. (video)

Boar mount possibly linked to Richard III

Experts are investigating the possibility that a copper-alloy boar mount, discovered near the Thames River in London, might have belonged to King Richard III. (photo)

The complexity of identifying Richard III

Archaeologists, historians and royalists are waiting with bated breath for the determination of the identity of a skeleton found in Leicester, England. The skeleton is believed to be that of King Richard III, but they may have a long wait for the test results.

Scottish farmhouse painting could be lost da Vinci

When cash-strapped Fiona McLaren took a family painting to an expert for evaluation, she was shocked to learn that the 23x28 inch (58x71 cm) piece might be an unknown work by Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci. (photo)

British MP calls for state funeral for Richard III

Leicester South MP Jon Ashworth believes that a state funeral would be appropriate for the recently-discovered remains, believed to be those of King Richard III. "I think he should have a state funeral because he is the last English monarch to have died on a battlefield," said Ashworth.