During the 4th-8th century, vast stretches of Europe shifted from growing wheat to rye. Careful studies indicate the shift was a reflection towards a new, more balanced peasant economy.
In the 14th century, it became fashionable to decorate tables at noble or royal banquets with models of ships, symbolising “Good Luck” and “Fair Wind”. Later, the wealthy merchants in the cities picked up this fashion. The Schlüsselfeld ship is one of the more famous.
Ships were prized ornaments decorating the tables of kings and lords into the 16th and 17th century.
A newly discovered travel account of a Florentine merchant visiting Canterbury and the shrine of Thomas Becket sheds light on late medieval devotion
New research points to the role distinct brooches played in the formation of “ethnic” identities in the North Sea region during the migration period and in the Early Viking Age
Norwegian archeologists are revisiting the old mounds ind which Viking Ships were buried. It appears, these mounds were carefully created as part of the burial traditions.
Last year, ten million euros were granted to the project, HistoGenes, to study the aDNA of 6000 individuals from AD 400-900.
A new interdisciplinary research project - The impact of food culture in Medieval towns (FOODIMPACT) will analyse more than 30.000 items in the Cultural Museum in Oslo
Last week, the Gjellestad excavation was live streamed by Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation
Already contemporaries noted how the Black Death hit the Anglo-Norman settlers in Ireland much harder than the Gaelic People. New research offers an explanation
After AD 536 a mysterious dimming of the sun brought on global cooling, famines, and civil upheavals. Believed to have been caused by climate changes caused by volcanic forcing, new research indicate some of this was undersea volcanism
In 1974 the historian Andrew Watson published an influential article in which he coined the phrase: The Arab Agricultural Revolution. How has this thesis fared? What do we know today about gardening in Early Medieval Iberia?
The climatic disruption in the 6thcentury was forced by a series of massive volcanic eruptions. Recently the Ilopango volcano was identified as responsible for the events AD 539-40.
Radiocarbon and geologic evidence reveal Ilopango volcano as source of the colossal ‘mystery’ eruption of 539/40 CE
Robert A.Dull, John R. Southon, Steffen Kutterolf, Kevin J.Anchukaitis, Armin Freundt. David B. Wahl. Payson Sheets, Paul Amaroli, Walter Hernandez, Michael C. Wiemann, and Clive Oppenheimer
In: Quaternary Science Reviews (2019) 06.08.2019
Today, the Ilopango volcano in El Salvador towers over a beautiful and serene lake offering countless adventures to nature lovers and cultural tourists aiming to experience the Maya Classic Period (AD 250 – 900).
Sometime in the middle of the first millennium the volcano erupted violently spreading its devastation over a densely populated and intensively cultivated region in the southern Maya realm, causing regional abandonment of an area covering more than 20,000 km2, and destroying countless villages and settlements. One of these is the Joya de Ceren, called The Pompeii of the New World and declared UNESCO World Heritage.
Although long suspicioned as the cause of the events in AD 539-40, neither the regional nor global impacts of the Tierra Blanca Joven (TBJ) eruption in Mesoamerica have been well appraised. Until now scientists have been met with limitations in available volcanological, chronological, and archaeological.
In this article, the authors present new evidence of the age, magnitude and sulfur release of the TBJ eruption, establishing it as one of the two hitherto unidentified volcanic triggers, which loaded the atmosphere with a serious injection of stratospheric aerosol.
This injection profoundly impacted the climate across the Northern Hemisphere between circa 536 and 550 CE. The new chronology is derived from 100 new radiocarbon measurements performed on three subfossil tree trunks enveloped in proximal TBJ pyroclastic deposits.
The authors have also reassessed the eruption magnitude using terrestrial (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras) and near-shore marine TBJ tephra deposit thickness measurements. Together, our new constraints on the age, eruption size and sulfur yield along with Ilopango’s latitude (13.7° N), squarely frame the TBJ as the major climate-forcing eruption of AD 539 or 540, which has been identified in bipolar ice cores and sourced to the tropics. The eruption merit a rating of 7 on the Volcanic Explosivity Index, and posits it as larger than the 1816 eruption of Tambora, which caused the “year without a summer.”
In addition to deepening appreciation of the TBJ eruption’s impacts in Mesoamerica, the research links this volcanic eruption to the major Northern Hemisphere climatic downturn of the mid-6th century CE, and offers another piece in the puzzle of understanding Eurasian history of the period.
Suddenly, in the 1340s young Italian men began to wear cropped tunics, drooping hoods, and large purses hanging from elaborate metallic belts. This new silhouette was both mysterious and daring.
The Missal of Roselli – Messale Roselli – was produced for Cardinal Nicolas Rosell in Avignon c. 1350. Now, in Torino, it represents one of the beautiful illuminated missals from the 14th century.
Londinium, Lundenwic, Lundenburh, London. Different names for the same place. At least, such was the belief until the late 20the century, when archaeologists could report that the history of the settlement was more complex.