Christianity

Medieval treasures in Nashville until June 7, 2009

Residents of Nashville, Tennessee have the rare opportunity to view "some of the finest medieval art in the United States" when the Frist Center for the Visual Arts presents Medieval Treasures from the Cleveland Museum of Art now through June 7, 2009.

Pope creates two new medieval saints

Among the five new saints created recently by Pope Benedict were a 14th century Portuguese friar and an early 14th-century Sienese aristocrat. The saints were canonized in a ceremony at the Vatican.

Dog Skeletons Indicate Medieval Custom of Sacrifice

A discovery of multiple buried dog skeletons in a medieval town outside Budapest suggests that the custom of animal sacrifice was much more widespread in early Christian Hungary than previously thought.

Today in the Middle Ages: April 19, 1012

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

The Knights Templar mystery linked to the Shroud of Turin

Two of the great mysteries of the Middle Ages were linked recently when the Vatican announced that the renowned Shroud of Turin was hidden for over 100 years after the Crusades by the Knights Templar. (video)

SCA members make ready for Santiago Pilgrimage

Medieval re-enactment is afoot in Drachenwald in the form of a plan to take part in the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela "using as medieval gear as possible," an endeavor in the footsteps of thousands of medieval pilgrims.

[DRA] Pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela

The idea is to make a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela using as medieval gear as possible. In short, our " frame of reference" is romantic history as seen by the SCA. The trip will take a minumum of seven days, we will walk approximately 150 kilometers and this will cost (approximately) from 200€ to 500€ (depending how much you have to fly).

Relics of saints found in German altar

Experts at the British Museum were surprised - and thrilled - to discover the relics of 39 saints in a 12th century portable altar. The altar, first acquired by the museum in 1902, was opened for the first time recently and revealed bones wrapped in tiny bundles.

Hallelujah!

In celebration of the season, Les Freres de St Francis de la Sissies - who have taken a vow of silence - offer their version of the Hallelujah Chorus.

California monks reconstruct 800 year old building

Monks at the Abbey of New Clairvaux in Vina, California are rebuilding an 800 year old chapter house transported from Ovila, Spain to California in 1931 by William Randoph Hearst.

Plenary Indulgences again available in the Catholic Church

In 1517, Martin Luther denounced the selling of indulgences by the Church, setting off the Reformation. Now the modern Catholic Church is reinstituting the practice.

Benedictine nuns victims of Black Death

The remains of several Benedictine nuns from the Sainte-Croix Abbey near Poitiers, France have shown evidence that the sisters died of the plague, probably while caring for other victims of the disease. Their deaths have been dated to the early 17th century.

St. Francis prayer of modern origin

“Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace; where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith,” is a prayer long attributed to St. Francis of Assisi. But a recent article dates the prayer to the beginning of the 20th century.

Valentine's Day history still a mystery

Every year historians debate the "real" history of Valentine's Day, and still there seems to be no consensus on its true origins. Now student Sarah Clark gives it a try.

Secret letters of Mary, Queen of Scots to be available online

Two dozen letters, written in a secret code by Mary, Queen of Scots, will soon be available online to visitors of the Scottish Catholic Archives website.

Myth-busting the Middle Ages

Among its numerous topics of discussion, List Universe includes "Top 10 Myths About The Middle Ages," an illustrated, annotated selection of myths modern people often believe about the Middle Ages.

Researchers use church records to reconstruct weather patterns

A team of Spanish researchers are using records of agricultural rites kept by the Cathedral of Toledo to reconstruct a pattern of droughts that plagued the country between 1506 and 1900.

Remains of 3 Teutonic Knights found in Poland

The silk-wrapped remains of three grand masters of the Teutonic Knights have been found by archaeologists in a cathedral in Kwidzyn, Poland. The Order of the Teutonic Knights was founded in the late 12th century to aid German pilgrims in the Holy Land.

Lost church of Bix Gibwyn found in Oxfordshire

Archaeologists are hoping that they have found the location of the "lost" church of Bix Gibwyn, an 800-year-old structure that was abandoned in the late 16th century. The research team has discovered three medieval graves which could pinpoint the site of the church.

Spanish grail "has tremendous cultural value"

While it may not be the true Holy Grail, an international congress held November 7-9, 2008 at the Catholic University of Valencia, Spain declared that the artifact "has tremendous cultural value due to its impact on history and literature."

Experts plan to save Monasterboice crosses

The traditional Celtic crosses of Monasterboice, Ireland are crumbling away. Now experts are formulating a plan to save three of the "crosses, recognised as the best in Europe for their period."

Jennifer Writing Blog

Jennifer writes medieval to contemporary Christian fiction set in Europe and the Carolinas. Much of her work is inspired by her own family history dating as far back as 1630 when many of her ancestors migrated to America.

Byzantine floor may have graced church in Jerusalem

The discovery of a simple mosaic floor beneath Temple Mount's Aksa Mosque has led archaeologists to speculate that the Mosque may have superceded a Byzantine church, but other experts disagree.

Cistercians in Yorkshire Project

The Cistercians in Yorkshire Project, a UK£50 million UK-wide digitalization program, is "designed to enable the learning materials and resources currently contained in galleries, communities, libraries, museums, universities and other centres of excellence, to be directly accessible to homes and communities via the internet."

Sotheby's auction catalogue offers delights

On December 8, 2008, Sotheby's Auction House in London will be auctioning a number of western and oriental manuscripts. A catalogue of the items with closeups and descriptions is available to view online.

Digging up dirt on Martin Luther

German scientists are taking an unusual approach to studying the domestic life of 16th century churchman Martin Luther. They are digging through his garbage.

Did Norse bring Christianity to Scotland?

A team of archaeologists from the University of Nottingham are trying to determine if Vikings brought Christianity to Caithness, Scotland before Saint Columba brought the religion to Iona. (video)

Jewels and saints highlight Walters Art Museum exhibits

The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland is hosting two exhibits dealing with subjects of interest to medievalists: The Special Dead: a Medieval Reliquary Revealed and Bedazzled: 5,000 Years of Jewelry. Both exhibits will be open until January 2009.

"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.

Sacred sounds in New York City

The Church of St. Mary the Virgin recently rang with the sounds of choral polyphony when the Tallis Scholars, led by Peter Phillips presented a program of Spanish Renaissance music as part of Columbia University's early music series. Allan Kozinn of the New York Times has a review.