This series aims to meet a growing need amongst students and teachers of medieval history for translations of key sources that are directly usable in students' own work. It provides texts central to medieval studies courses and focuses upon the diverse cultural and social as well as political conditions that affected the functioning of all levels of medieval society.
The basic premise of the series is that translations must be accompanied by sufficient introductory and explanatory material and each volume therefore includes a comprehensive guide to the sources' interpretation, including discussion of critical linguistic problems and an assessment of the most recent research on the topics being covered.
Series editors: Rosemary Horrox and Janet L. Nelson
Did you know that prior to the
Middle Ages, bathing was actually quite common? It wasn’t until the 16th
century that public baths were opposed by church authorities as being
responsible for immorality, promiscuous sex, and diseases.
Did you know that the Middle
English term “pygg” referred to a type of clay? In the Middle Ages, people
would often keep coins in jars or pots made of pygg, often referred to as “pygg
jars”. By the 18th century these came to be known as a “pig bank” or “piggy
Did you know that gargoyles were
not added to Churches and buildings to ward off evil spirits but to be used as
drain pipes? True gargoyles project out of a wall so that rain water can flow
out their mouths away from the building, rather than down the side of the building
Did you know that using only a set
of compasses, a set square and a staff or rope marked off in halves, thirds and
fifths, the innovative medieval mason was able to construct some of the most
elaborate and beautiful structures ever made?
Did you know that the Black Death was
caused by a complex series of bacterial strains called Yersinia pestis (Y.
pestis), found in the digestive tract of fleas? The plague bacteria is thought
to have spread from the arid plains of central Asia to Europe on the backs of
rats that made their way to Europe along popular trading routes.
Did you know that the first
chocolate store in England was opened by a Frenchman in the 17th
Did you know that one of the
earliest versions of the London Bridge was destroyed in 1014 when the Saxons
rowed up the Thames and pulled it down using only boats and ropes? This
incident is said to have inspired the nursery rhyme ‘London Bridge is falling