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Medieval West - Additional Web Resources: Religion

This is a guide to free web sites about the Medieval West: general and history, images, law, literature, science, women, philosophy, religion, scholarly organnizations, scholarly discussion lists.


Alphabetical list.

Canterbury and St. Albans: Treasures from Church and Cloister

Exhibition from the Getty Foundation brings together two rare masterpieces of Medieval English art: stained glass from Canterbury Cathedral and illuminations from the St. Albans Psalter. First-time visitors can watch a short preview of the in situ exhibit and then move on to detailed online exhibition galleries. The Behind the Scenes area offers first-hand commentary from manuscripts curator, Kristen Collins, and her time studying the St. Albans Psalter. The Cult and Place section offers up commentary on the major figures associated with these two artistic marvels, Saint Thomas Becket and Christina of Markyate, a holy woman associated with the Abbey Church of St. Alban.

Carolingian Culture at Reichenau and St. Gall.  

This website presents digital versions of two of the gems surviving from the monasteries of Reichenau and St. Gall. One is the unique architectural drawing known as the Plan of St. Gall. The other is the extensive ninth-century library collections of the two monasteries, identifiable by their distinctive script. Both of these are complimented by various resources to assist in their study. Located roughly twenty-five miles apart on what is now the border between Switzerland and Germany, the island monastery of Reichenau and the mountain valley monastery of St. Gall were members of a network of imperial monasteries stretching across the Carolingian empire in the eighth and ninth centuries.

Christian Classics Ethereal Library. From Calvin College. There is no better place to look first, when in need of an online text from the Christian tradition. Contains some 1,000 of the most important public-domain works for theological study. This is more like a 'read library' than most sites.

Gods and Scholars

Cornell University Library hosts Gods and Scholars, an online exhibition of diverse archival material on religion. Browse this collection, which includes religious texts, art, objects, and architecture, by a variety of themes, including the The Study and Practice of Religion, Witchcraft and Witch Hunts, and Reformation.  Cornell has a noted witchcraft collection.

Internet Sacred Text Archive, a nonprofit archive of religious texts privately maintained in Santa Cruz and is not affiliated with any religious organization or institution.

Knights Templar and the Middle Ages,  The Knights Templar were one of the orders created after the First Crusade to protect pilgrims on their way to the Holy Land and to guard various relics associated with the early days of Christianity. The site’s purpose is to discuss the importance of the Templars during the Middle Ages and the Crusades. Learn about the founding and activities of the Templars here, from 1119 to the 14th c. Has information about other military orders during the period and links to other web sites on the medieval period.

Mapping Gothic France

France and Great Britain are home to a number of striking examples of gothic architecture built in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, including cathedrals and castles. On this website, created by Columbia University art historian and archeology scholar Stephen Murray and Vassar College art professor Andrew Tallon, visitors can explore photographs of these structures and learn more about the history of this architecture. On The Main Map, visitors can explore annotated photographs of structures by geographic pin. Many of these pins included multiple photographs, allowing visitors to examine the exterior and interior of structures in great deal from their own computer. The majority of structures are located in modern France, but this collection also includes a large number of buildings in the United Kingdom. Another way to experience the site is via The Historical Maps and Timeline section, which features an animated map outlining the intersections between the history of France and the construction of these buildings. Meanwhile, visitors with a passion for architecture will enjoy the Comparison feature, which allows visitors to layer a variety of exterior and interior architectural features on different structures. A work in progress, the Stories and Essays section provides more information about Gothic architecture as well as the history of France.

Margery Kempe Online

Digital facsimile of The Book of Margery Kempe alongside a modern transcription in facing page format.  Facsimile and transcription of de Worde's printed edition.  Comprehensive bibliography.  By Joel Fredell, Southeast Louisiana University.

Monastic Matrix: a Scholarly Resource for the Student of Women's Religious Communities from 400 to 1600 CE

Cross-disciplinary with info on both primary and secondary sources.  Home page has links to primary source documents, an archive of modern articles, modern biographies of individual religious women, a collection of artwork and archaeological artifacts, a bibliography, and Monasticon, the site's core database of women's religious communities which is searchable to by title, dedication, foundation/termination date, and region.  Info in the Monasticon includes location, affiliated religious order, the rule followed, foundation information, and more.

Pilgrims and Pilgrimage

Pilgrims and Pilgrimage is a website offering ways to explore a concept common to almost all cultures and faiths through the centuries, that still profoundly influences millions of people today. This website outlines the multiple meanings of pilgrimage within the Christian tradition in particular, exploring their expression through the centuries and their continuing significance today. This survey is set against the background of the importance of pilgrimage in faiths and cultures worldwide.

Religion Online.  From Yale Divinity School. A growing digital library of over 1,500 English language Christian theological classics and contemporary works, including essays, monographs, chapters, and speeches.

Societe des Bollandistes

Saints are inspirational, though some may belong more to the realm of folklore or even invention. For twenty centuries they have been influencing our world, our culture and our thinking in ways few people realise. The early martyrs whose exploits sustained generations of readers, the great mystical writers, pilgrimages and the trade in relics, accounts of prodigious healings and other miracles: the saints have inspired innumerable writers and artists, their very names identify towns and villages all over Europe and America, their patronage still inspires feasts and processions everywhere.

For almost four centuries the Bollandists have been at the forefront of hagiographic research [about Christian saints.]  Our team of experts, now both Jesuit and lay, is dedicated exclusively to the critical study of Greek, Latin, Oriental and modern hagiographic sources as well as to the history of the saints and their cults in all their aspects.  They have a library, a research centre, and do publications.  Look in our online catalog under author "Bollandists."  We do not offer Acta Sanctorum [lives of the Saints] online, but if you check this title in our online catalog you will find some vols are available in SPC or  via HathiTrust database. 

Wolsey Manuscripts

Digital versions of two handwritten, illuminated manuscripts made for English cardinal Thomas Wolsey, 1470/71-1530.  They are both lectionaries that provide Bible readings to be used on specific saints' days. One contains  material from the Gospels (New Testament books of the Bible: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John), the other material from the Epistles (Letters of Paul, New Testament).  The Gospels ms. belongs to Magdalen College, Oxford.  The Epistles ms. belongs to Christ Church College, Oxford. 

Wycliffite Repository

Laurie Ringer's select concordance of vernacular Wycliffite/Lollard texts. Concordance of 395 headwords generated from an assemblage of 432 Middle English texts associated with the Wycliffite/Lollard heresy.

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