Rituals, Cultures, and More
Mind and Spirit
There is more to life than work. Society is painted by the beliefs, customs, and celebrations of the region. Community expression in art, music, festivals, and traditions creates a medieval village’s social life.
Medieval art is beautiful, expansive and covers a wide range of styles and cultures. Throughout the medieval and renaissance period, religious and secular art is prominent and can be found displayed within churches, cathedrals, as well as in homes and manors. Glass, metal, fabric and paint are some of the mediums used to create a vast collection of art. It is not uncommon to see valuable materials, such as gold, used for objects in churches, personal jewelry, backgrounds for mosaics, and applied as gold leaf in manuscripts.
Medieval Literature - The Dark Ages and the Bards
English Medieval literature had, so far as we know, no existence until Christian times of the Dark Ages when Latin was the language of English literature. The Anglo-Saxon’s saga was initially passed by word of mouth from one generation to another by English, Welsh and Irish bards. The origins of King Arthur’s stories is attributed to older Welsh legends and Celtic Myths told by the Bards, who contributed to Medieval literature.
The Romantic Arthurian Legend
Tales told by the Bards were transferred into book form, and the romantic stories of the Arthurian legend and the ideals of courtly love became part of Medieval literature. The primary source of information about King Arthur and the Arthurian Legend is written by a Welsh cleric and author called Geoffrey of Monmouth. He wrote a fictional book called Historia Regum Britanniae King's of Britain in 1136. Other stories about King Arthur and the Arthurian Legend were written in the Welsh 'Black Book of Caernarvon' in 1250. Other books called Historia Brittonum by Nennius, the Annales Cambriae, the Chronicon Anglicanum, and the Welsh Mabinogion also references the Arthurian Legend and King Arthur.
Medieval Life and Times
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Music had a transition of change and growth from the early medieval period into the later medieval and renaissance period. Early medieval music is based within a religious context and nature, sung within church services and monasteries. Multi voiced /polyphonic chants called Organums were the earliest music and used in religious settings.
By the late medieval period, musical literature had developed, which, together with the musical notations, made it possible for music to be shared and standardized. During this time, secular music had gained a foothold and became known alongside religious music, and further development in music came to affect both.
While inns provided lodgings for travelers, taverns were drinking houses for the community. A sign founds a local drinking house hung above the door that would display an image of branches and leaves to indicate wine. Taverns were limited in their scope and seldom offered lodgings, or large and varied amounts of food is the usual fare. Taverns specialized in the pastimes of gambling, singing, and possibly seeking companionship. Pubs were an integral part of the community and a cornerstone of village life.
The creation of the first medieval tournament developed from creating a safer environment to test and train knights. Melees in the medieval period were chaotic, and it was not uncommon for knights to suffer injuries or die in battle. Around the 10th century, the melee and the joust is combined to create France’s first tournament in 1066.
Tournaments enabled knights to practice their battle skills. Knights set in a list tree according to strength and ability, and the battle could occur in a safer environment. These matches helped knights to become battle-ready and gave them realistic challenges to experience a struggle similar to what they would experience in a war.
The medieval knight wanted to put on a good performance in a tournament because his skills and ability would be on full display to an audience of lords and ladies. Family arms are prominently displayed, and each knight would be a representative of their household strength.
Preserving the History of Community
Preserving the History of Community