Medieval Resources


Click here to see a list of our Medieval holdings organized by subject.

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Online Databases

Ancient and Medieval History Online
Provides thorough coverage of nine civilizations—ancient Egypt, ancient Mesopotamia, ancient Greece, ancient Rome, ancient and medieval Africa, medieval Europe, the Americas, ancient and medieval Asia, and Islamic Empire. Time periods: prehistory through the 1500s.

World History in Context
More than 10,000 pages of primary source materials, full-text periodicals, and reference works help you explore more than 4,900 years into the past.

World Religions Online
Explores religion and spirituality from the ceremonies of the first practitioners to the elaborate rituals of today.  Topic Centers focus on the world’s major religions and traditional spiritual practices, such as Judaism and Native American religions, quickly guiding users to important topics, spiritual leaders, information on sacred texts, and holy days and festivals.

Science in Context
An in-depth, curriculum-oriented science database that provides a one-stop resource for all science-related research needs, including information on medieval medicine and technology.

Science Online
Offers a comprehensive overview of a broad range of scientific disciplines.  Includes more than 1,300 science experiments and activities, indexed by grade range, subject category, and time required;  nearly 8,300 printable diagrams, illustrations, and images; more than 500 videos and flash animations; full and partial text from hundreds of authoritative print titles. Also helpful for finding information on medieval medicine and technology.

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Web Sites

Internet Medieval Sourcebook (Fordham University)
This project of Fordham University aims to create, in part, a public-domain sourcebook of full-text Medieval resources from around the Internet.  Topics include the Crusades, Economic Life, the Medieval Church, Sex and Gender, and Social Issues.

History (BBC)
Presented by the BBC and written by historians, this handbook contains information on the Vikings, Norman Britain, and England in the Middle Ages, including information on the Plague, Art and Architecture, and important figures such as Eleanor of Aquitaine.

Subject Guide to Digital eBooks (Digital Book Index)
Digital Book Index provides links to more than 165,000 full-text digital books from more than 1,800 commercial and non-commercial publishers, universities, and various private sites. More than 140,000 of these books, texts, and documents are available free. One can browse full-text books under headings such as “History: Medieval.” Topics include Medicine, Crusades, Church History, and the Black Death.  You can browse for information on the Medieval period for specific countries as well as in broad topics such as Weapons and Art and Architecture. keyword searching is also available.

Online Reference Book for Medieval Studies (ORB)
The Online Reference Book for Medieval Studies (ORB) is an academic resource written by and for medieval scholars. Based at College of Staten Island, City University of New York, ORB includes an encyclopaedia containing essays, bibliographies, images and documents (arranged chronologically and geographically), a selection of electronic versions of medieval texts and links to other related sites, including the ORB reference shelf.

British Library

Luminarium: Anthology of English Literature
An Internet portal containing an extensive collection of links relating to Middle English Literature. Topics include Geoffrey Chaucer, Sir Gawain, Sir Thomas Mallory, Everyman, Medieval Plays and Lyrics.

Leaves of Gold: Treasures of Manuscript Illumination from Philadelphia Collections
A collaborative project of the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries, this site provides examples from and background information on medieval miniature paintings showing religious scenes, classical tales, historical events, and medieval romances.

Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts (National Library of the Netherlands)
This database contains images from and information about the illuminated medieval manuscripts of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek and the Museum Meermanno-Westreenianum. You can browse by subject or keyword search the collection.

Epistolae: Medieval Women’s Letters
A project of Columbia University, this site provides a free online repository of letters to and from women in the Middle Ages, from the 4th to the 13th century.  The letters are written in Latin, with English translations. Biographical sketches of the women and the historical context of the letters are often provided.

Digital Scriptorium (Columbia University Libraries)
A Columbia University Libraries project, “The Digital Scriptorium is a growing image database of medieval and renaissance manuscripts that unites scattered resources from many institutions into an international tool for teaching and scholarly research.” Presently viewable on the DS website are records for 5,300 manuscripts and for 24,300 images.

Medieval Manuscripts in the National Library of Medicine
An exhibit that celebrates the medieval manuscript holdings of the National Library of Medicine, particularly the 12th-century English manuscript, Treatises on Medicine

Online Medieval and Classical Library
Online Medieval and Classical Library (OMACL) is a collection of some of the most important literary works of Classical and Medieval civilization. One can search or browse by author, title, genre, and language.

Epact: Scientific Instruments of Medieval and Renaissance Europe
This online catalogue is the result of a collaboration by four museums: the Museum of the History of Science, Oxford, the Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza, Florence, the British Museum, London and the Museum Boerhaave, Leiden. The 520 catalogue entries represent all the museums’ European instrument holdings from makers active before 1600.

Medieval Art (Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History, The Metropolitan Museum of Art)
Sponsored by the Met, this site is a chronological, geographical, and thematic exploration of the history of art from around the world, as illustrated by the Museum’s collection. Medieval topics include: Byzantium, Crusades, Arms and Armor, Sculpture, Gothic Art, the Hagia Sophia, and much more.

Department of Art history and Archaeology (Columbia University)

The British Museum
Choose “Explore,” then choose “World Cultures,” and you can browse museum holdings for Medieval Europe, and the Byzantine Empire. The collection includes sculptures and paintings with descriptions.  You can also conduct keyword searches.

Turning the Pages (The British Library)
Allows you to “leaf” through the British Library’s great books, including The Sherborne Missal, a 15th-Century Church book , as well as selections from the Luttrell Psalter.  The site also provides detailed information about these works.

Notre Dame Cathedral
Provides history and background about the cathedral and its features.

Art Resource
Art Resource is the world’s largest fine art stock photo archive, with more than 400,000 searchable fine art images from the world’s leading sources. Some suggested searches: “Gothic (1150-1500);” ““Byzantine (c.395-1453);” “11th century CE;” “Stained Glass;” “Middle Ages;” “Medieval;” “Early Medieval (600-1000 CE).”

The Web Gallery of Art
The Web Gallery of Art is a virtual museum and searchable database of European painting and sculpture of the Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neoclassicism, Romanticism periods (1000-1850), currently containing over 28,400 reproductions. Picture commentaries and artist biographies are available.

The Labrynth: Sources for Medieval Studies (Georgetown University)
The Labyrinth provides free, organized access to electronic resources in medieval studies. The Labyrinth’s menus and links provide connections to databases, services, texts, and images around the world. The site includes links on topics such as Cookery, the Crusades, Church History, Education, Medicine, and Music.

Medieval and Renaissance Illuminated Manuscripts from Western Europe (New York Public Library Digital Gallery)
Provides access to more than 2,000 manuscript pages and associated illuminations dating from the 9th through the 16th centuries

The Pierpont Morgan Library and Museum
Thousands of digital images from The Pierpont Morgan Library’s renowned collection of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts are now available. The collection spans some ten centuries of Western illumination, and contains manuscripts from all the major schools, including some of the great masterpieces of medieval manuscript art.

Dress, Jewels, Arms and Coat of Arms: Material Culture and Self-Representation in the Late Middle Ages
Organized by Medieval Studies Professor Gerhard Jaritz of Central European University, this site contains information on dress, arms and armor, jewelry, and heraldry.

Medieval Gastronomy (Bibliothèque Nationale de France)
“The English version provides mainly images from the on-line exposition. There is some text but it is not very extensive. The images are great. However, the French version is much larger with a tremendous amount of information and details. I would highly recommend spending time in the French version. Even if you do not read French, the presentation is impressive and has a lot more images.”

Index of Medieval Medical Images (UCLA Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library)
The Index of Medieval Medical Images project aims to describe and index the content of all medieval manuscript images (up to the year 1500) with medical components held in North American collections. A substantial sample of the images and descriptions are available via a searchable database on the Web.

Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi: Medieval Stained Glass in Great Britain
The Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi (CVMA) is the international research project dedicated to recording medieval stained glass. In Great Britain, the CVMA is a British Academy Research Project, hosted by the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of York. The site provides free access to their digital Picture Archive, containing more than 23,000 images, most of them in color.

Monastic Matrix
A project of Yale University, this site contains primary sources and other materials relating to women’s religious communities from 400 to 1600 CE.

Browse Images of Manuscripts (Bodleian Library, University of Oxford)
Provides a sample of images from the manuscripts held by this Oxford library.

National Archives (United Kingdom)

Roman de la Rose Digital Library
Roman de la Rose Digital Library is a joint project of the Sheridan Libraries of Johns Hopkins University and the Bibliothèque nationale de France. The Roman de la Rose is the work of two authors. Begun by Guillaume de Lorris around 1230 and continued by Jean de Meun approximately forty years later, the Rose is probably the most influential work written in the Old French vernacular. This site presents illuminated manuscripts of and background material about this important work.

CANTUS: A Database for Latin Ecclesiastical Chant
Maintained by the Faculty of Music at The University of Western Ontario, this database assembles indices of the Latin ecclesiastical chants found in early manuscript and printed sources for the liturgical Office, such as antiphoners and breviaries.

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