Medieval graffiti of straw kings, pentagrams, crosses, ships and “demon traps” have been offering a tantalising glimpse into England’s past. What do the pictures reveal about life in the Middle Ages?
A project to record the graffiti, which began in Norfolk, has now been rolled out to other areas and is gradually spreading across England.
Armed with just a torch and a camera, a team of volunteers have recorded more than 28,000 images from churches in Norfolk alone and are a third of the way through searching Norwich Cathedral, where there are many more examples.
Although the drawings discovered so far undoubtedly offer an insight into the minds of some - possibly bored - churchgoers in the Middle Ages, their precise meaning is not always clear. Read more.
A large complex of small Christian churches has been gradually unearthed by Bulgarian archaeologists in downtown Sofia during continuing excavations at the construction sites of the Sofia Metro.
During the excavations near the Serdica metro station and the TZUM department store in the downtown of the Bulgarian capital last summer, the archaeologists found the remains of a medieval church.
They have now found two more medieval churches dating back to the 14th and 16th centuries located within 70 m from one another, archaeologist Snezhana Goryanova has revealed. Read more.
Norway’s historical capital, Trondheim, was a hive of activity in medieval times. Recent archaeological research in the city’s public forest, “Bymarka”, has uncovered more than 500 charcoal pits, tell-tale signs of substantial medieval metal working activity.
For centuries, Trondheim – or Nidaros as it was then called – was home to the Archdiocese of Norway, and also for the Faeroe Islands, the Orkney Islands, the Isle of Man, Iceland and Greenland. Nidaros Cathedral, the city’s Gothic cathedral, held reliquaries from St. Olaf and thus attracted thousands of pilgrims.
The cathedral was not the only church in town. While just two of the many churches erected in the town center in medieval times still stand, 25 stone churches were built during the Middle Ages in the countryside around Trondheim. Read more.