Rings of Le Puy
Object of the Month
Jewelry had many uses in the middle ages, just as it does now. As Maximin Deloche pointed out in his 1929 study on rings in France, rings in particular could serve several ends: a king, pope, or a bishop, for example, might use a signet ring to authenticate documents, whereas ecclesiastical and secular leaders often wore rings to denote their exalted status. Rings were also exchanged to signify special relationships between wearers, and might be inscribed with messages or decorations on the...
The Provençal Household of Na Cabesse
Inventory of the Month
Pierre Pansier (1864-1934) , the original editor of this month's featured inventory, was a member of a cadre of French scholars known as érudits or savants who made significant contributions to medieval history and philology despite not holding formal academic appointments in these fields. Pansier himself was an ophthalmologist and surgeon who practiced in Avignon and was the author of several treatises on ophthalmology. But alongside his professional interests, Pansier researched and wrote...
Poems of Household Goods: Gendered Inventories of Economic and Social Capital
From the late Middle Ages, peculiar inventories have survived within so-called "poems of household goods." At least twelve of these poems have been handed down in German since the 14th century.✱ Similar poems in French already existed in the 13th century.✱ From today's perspective, they may seem quite strange. Resembling actual inventories, their detailed descriptions of household goods on the one hand give us vivid insights into the material furnishings of late medieval and early modern...READ MORE
ALME is a collaborative, cross-disciplinary project that seeks to increase our understanding of Europe’s material horizons during the later Middle Ages, an era when changing patterns of production and consumption altered the material world and transformed the relationship between people and things.
DALME has developed a novel methodology that focuses on the extraction of information about material culture from documentary sources, such as household or estate inventories, in a manner that makes it possible to seamlessly integrate textual objects with their tangible counterparts from archaeological excavations and museum collections.
Drawing upon cross-disciplinary practice and advances in digital scholarship, the project aims to make vast amounts of material culture accessible online as open, well-structured and machine-actionable datasets readily amenable to computational analysis, together with the necessary tools, standards, and documentation to enable new research and facilitate dissemination.
Based in the Department of History at Harvard University, DALME brings together a growing network of researchers from institutions across the US and Europe.
We are grateful to the following organizations for supporting the project.