Jewels, Hair and Accessories of the Middle Ages
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 Dietmar von Aist shows a variety of purses and belts to his love interest while disguised as a peddler in the Manesse Codex, circa 1300–1320, Zürich, Heidelberg, Universitätsbibliothek, Cod. pal. Germ. 848, fol. 64 recto A margin scene possibly portraying negotiations between a man and a prostitute in a manuscript of the Romance of […]

Bibliography Anderson, Jaynie. Gardens of love in Venetian painting of the Quattrocento. Vol. 2005, in Rituals, Images, and Words: Varieties of Cultural Expression in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe. , edited by F.W. Kent and Charles Zika, 201-234. Focuses on a painting attributed to the studio of Antonio Vivarini, now in the National Gallery […]

General Description of Topic: I have loosely defined my interest as “Romance Items” and how they can be analyzed in the context of feminism and semiotics. Since my “target object”, aumonieres ( alm’s purses) have no research dedicated specifically to them I have identified several themes that relate and several other romance items ( like […]

Bibliography Bartlett, Robert. “Symbolic Meanings of Hair in the Middle Ages.” Transactions of the Royal Historical Society 4 (1994): 43-60. Courtais, Georgine de. Women’s Headdress & Hairstyles in England from AD 600 to the present day. London: The Anchor Press LTD., 1973. Campbell, Marian.  Medieval Jewelry in Europe 1100-1500. London:V &A Publishing.,2009. 33 Heath, Jennifer. […]

Lapidary- a text that investigates and chronicles the physical, magical and medicinal property of a stone. Pliny the Elder’s Natural History was admired in the Middle Ages for its compendium of minerals and metals. Marbodus, Bishop of Rennes, wrote one of the most famous lapidaries, Liper Lapidum Book of Stones, in 1067-81. In this book he […]

Why is hair important? 1. hair can be like clothing, malleable, changeable with dye, styling, accessories, yet it grows from the body and is more organic. 2. hair surrounds the face, the most communicatively diverse area of the body, ie its the most socially visible. 3. In come cases gives biological information In the Middle Ages: […]

After the return of the Crusaders, small pouches began to be attached to girdles called amonieres sarrasimoises (Saracen almsbags.) These bags were meant for carrying money and bits of food to distribute to the poor. Purses have existed since ancient Greek times, but the actual archeological record is rare. Before the Crusades, small purses have […]

This article discusses Renaissance and Baroque jewelry, but her ideas are useful when thinking of medieval jewelry. Rodini’s main points can be summarized: – though small in size jewelry signified the relationship between the wearer and society – During the Renaissance the world was considered to be infused with signs, and it was a necessary […]

Men were put in a conundrum during the Middle Ages. If they grew their hair too long, they were put down for looking like women, but  a series of edicts given in the years 1187-1220 aimed to seperate secular clothing styles from that of the clergy, who were now required to be unmarried and celibate. […]

Anglo-Saxon (600 - 1154): Simple Veils, Head-tires, Combs, and Pin

During this time the head was always covered with no hair showing, although it was usually braided elaborately underneath the veil. Veils– made of light-weight fabric like silk, cambric, or fine linen. They were usually rectangular lengths with a hole cut in the middle for putting the head through. Head-tires– circlets of gold that could […]