Ever so often we stumble on some minor medieval news which do not merit a full article, but nevertheless, deserve a short notice.
Last year, the valuable collection of manuscripts and books from the Bridgettine Abbey of Altomünster was threatened by senseless dispersion. After having secured more than 2000 signatures from the international community as well as scholarly interventions, the collection is being preserved and digitized. The rarest and most valuable tomes the Altomuenster Abbey include manuscripts with colorful illustrations from the late 15th and early 16th century, but experts say items like recipe books are also invaluable to the study of the Bridgettines, helping tell the tale of what daily life was like behind the closed doors of the convent hundreds of years ago.
“It’s a great victory for scholarship,” said Volker Schier, a Bridgettine scholar and researcher at the Catholic University Leuven, in Belgium, who was one of the instigators of the petition.
Hampton Court Palace is currently undergoing a massive, multiphased electrical upgrade, its first since the 1960s, which has provided the rare opportunity to carry out archaeological excavations on the site before the new infrastructure is installed.
The earliest days of the palace are relatively obscure, overshadowed by the site’s better-known royal history, and the exact date of its foundation is unknown, but an agricultural estate appears to have existed there by at least 1086. The early medieval manor was then leased by Sir Giles Daubeney – Lord Chamberlain to Henry VII – in 1494, and he subsequently updated the buildings, including adding a kitchen next to the hall. After Daubeney’s death, Thomas Wolsey leased the manor in 1514, launching a grand refurbishment and converting it into a magnificent palace – the birth of the complex’s more famous phase. One of the finds consists of the remains of a kitchen constructed in the 15th century.