The Lost Fort

My Travel and History Blog, Focussing mostly on Roman and Mediaeval Times


23 Feb 2011
  Chapter Church Fredelsloh - Another Romanesque Church at the Weser

After all those Roman posts, it's time for some Romanesque architecture again and I got a pretty church in spring sunshine for you.

Fredelsloh is a village not far from Göttingen. There had been an important chapter in the Middle Ages, belonging to the famous Weser abbeys I have mentioned several times. Fredelsloh isn't situated directly at the river like the other abbeys and chapters but it belongs in the same historical context.

Like Lippoldsberg Abbey, Fredelsloh was founded by an archbishop of Mainz, Adalbert I, in 1132. The abbey lies in the north-western outskirts of the fomer archdiocese and was intended as chapter following the Augustine rules. Fredelsloh gained importance very fast thanks to donations and privileges from popes, emperors and great feudal lords. Soon (I could not find an exact date) a ladies' chapter was added and some 150 people would meet during the liturgy of hours.

The Romanesque church in Fredelsloh, seen from the south

The counts of Dassel acted as reeves of the abbey (until 1322 when the family died out in the male line). During the feud between Welfen and Staufen, Fredelsloh managed to play both parties and get the best out of the situation. The provost Bertram was liege of the archbishop of Mainz who sided with the Welfen, while one of the chapter members, Johannes of Dassel, supported the Staufen. I'd have liked to sit in at the chapter meetings during the years of the fallout between Friedrich Barbarossa and Heinrich the Lion. I can imagine they were quite lively.

But Fredelsloh lost its importance as pawn after Duke Heinrich's exile, and material support ceased. Since the ground was clay and didn't support much agriculture, the abbey had problems to keep up its standard on a self supporting level, and the men left the chapter. The canonesses took to trading the pottery made of the clay (pottery is still done in Fredelsloh).

The Welfen family managed to rise again after the fall of Heinrich and the unhappy emperorship of his son Otto and regained much of its former lands, among them the grounds around the Weser on which Fredelsloh is situated. But the abbey had declined to a minor provincial monastery in the 14th century.

The church seen from the north

A big fire in 1290 destroyed most of the convent buildings and damaged the church. The pope gave some money for repair but not all buildings seem to have been reerected. Two years later a murder happened in the monastery but due to lack of a Cadfael it was never solved. Though the provost paid the relatives of the victim a lot of money (some sort of weregild). To keep them silent?

The Lutherian Reformation was introduced in Fredelsloh in 1542. Duchess Elisabeth of Calenberg-Göttingen sent Antonius Corvinus to the canonesses who told him they were fine with the Reformation but he should please, not introduce too many new rules because they were old and could not cope. A Reformation Lite, so to speak. But somehow the chapter still managed to hold on until 1652 when the last canoness left the place.

The church served as granary for several generations and survived while the other buildings fell into ruins. Today the church and land belong to the Klosterkammer Hannover which paid for a renovation of the church that restored the Romanesque layout and interior (1968-73). It's used as parish church.

The choir from the outside

The St.Blasius and Mary Church in Fredelsloh is an example of pure 12th century Romanesque architecture. The floor plan is cross shaped with a main nave and two side naves, transepts, a three-apsidal choir on the east side and a westwork with two towers. The main nave has double the width and height of the side naves which are also lower, which makes the church a basilica.

The decoration is very sparse, nothing like most of the Romanseque cathedrals at the Rhine (for example Mainz). There's a plinth running along the foundatins and tiny blind arcades directly under the roof - you can see them best on the apsis of the westwork (photo below). But this austere style is typical for several of the Weser abbeys; Lippoldsberg fe. has even less decorative elements on the exterior.


(Westwork with staircase apsis)

I already mentioned that Fredelsloh Abbey was a mixed chapter for both men and women. Of course, the genders needed to be kept apart and that included not only separate living quarters but also two different entrances to the church because services and the liturgy of the hours would be held together. The men entered the church by the south gate (their living quarters were south of the church).

The canonesses' quarters lay to the west, and they got a separate entrance from the westwork. The architect added a tower with a winding staircase and a small gate at the bottom so the ladies could access the nuns' quire on the second floor of the westwork. From the outside the tower is visible as apsis. Another cool aspect is the double row of steps around the spindle; the space between them was said to have been used as hiding place for valuables. The entire feature is unique for Fredelsloh..

The matroneum of the westwork has three storeys with an arcade system that narrowed in relation of 4:3:2; the nuns' quire took up the middle storey while the uppermost one was a 'blind' storey only serving to increase the impression of harmony. Most other Saxon westworks only have two galleries.

Unfortunately, this part of the church can only be seen from the outside today because there had been problems with the statics (sinking ground) and an additional wall that distributed the pressure away from the pillars of the main nave had to be erected about 200 years ago. Nowadays the eastern part of the church is sufficiently large for the parish and the interior of the westwork is locked off for visitors. It's also the reason I took few photos of the interior; that wall kept getting in the way.

Interior with view to the choir

The defining feature of Romanesque architecture is symmetry. Starting point for a church was the crossing: its side length served as scale for the rest of the building. The whole building thus gives the impression of great harmony in contrast to the disorderly world outside the church, an antimony between the House of God and chaos as seen by people in the Middle Ages. Like the outside of the church, the interior was sparsely decorated as well.

The arcades separating the naves originally were supported by alternating columns and pillars (simple Stützenwechsel; the other version is the double or Lower Saxon one with one column and two pillars - it's interesting that it wasn't used here because geographically Fredelsloh belongs to the area where that was the fashion) but after the fire in 1290, the columns were replaced with pillars


Source:
Die Stiftskirche St.Blasii und Marien in Fredelsloh - Eine romanische Basilika. Avaliable as pdf file from the website of the village.
 


14 Feb 2011
  The Roman Bridge in Augusta Treverorum (Trier)

I asked Aelius Rufus to give us a tour of the Roman Bridge in Trier. Hallo Aelius.

Salvete, Gabriele and dear readers. Or 'long time no see' as they say in your time. You're some friend, making me dig out those dusty old history books so I can fill your readers in on the two bridges that were there before the one they built in my time.

Well, let's get started. Augusta Treverorum, what is now called Trier, is situated on the right side of the Moselle though today its spreads to the other shore as well, Gabriele tells me. The river widens into a valley here, framed by hills which are mostly wood covered, sprinkled with the occasional vineyeard - not enough of them for my taste - or grazing ground. But already the Roman town encroached up the hills looming behind it; the arena is situated on one of them, for example. Some guy names Ausonius wrote a Latin poem about the Moselle, though I should not know that one; it's from the 4th century AD.

The Roman bridge seen from the direction of Koblenz upriver
(The photos were taken during a Moselle river cruise.)

Trier was founded in 17 BC, and the first bridge spanning the Moselle dates to that time. The deified Augustus had just made the last of his enemies fall upon their swords or snakes and won the civil war. He now could concentrate on the neglected provinces. He sent his friend Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa to kick some German marauders out of Gaul (what is the matter with those ancestors of yours?) and bring the infrastructure up to Roman standards. You know, us soldiers want nice roads to march on, not tree roots, swamps and undergrowth.

We also don't mind bridges instead of splashing through fords, but I suspect the merchants were the main reason to set up a dry crossing of the Moselle. The old ford was on the interstate from Marseille to Mainz, a very important road, and already guarded by some soldiers stationed in a fort on the Petersberg hill on the east side of the river. Now Agrippa not only ordered a bridge to be built but also founded the a new town in the name of Augustus - Augusta Treverorum (after the tribe of the Treveri living in the area) - on the right shore where the valley widens.

Getting closer to the bridge

The town was planned on the drawing board and has a very regular street pattern, not very different from our forts. Same everywhere in the Empire, but the good thing is you can't get lost in an unknow town or castellum once you've memorised the standard Roman street map. Augustus had guessed right; the town lies in an excellent spot where a major road and a river cross, and prospered.

That first bridge was a wooden pile bridge. The Romans still make those sometimes so I know how it's done. Long, massive poles, usually of oak, were rammed deeply into the soil beneath the bridge until the grip of the soil around the piles would support the load of the superstructure; that is, the supporting beams and the deck. Gabriele tells me that remains of those poles have been found in the riverbed in AD 1963, and were dendrochronologically dated to 17 BC (and you tell me Latin is complicated; that word is worse than those languages they speak around Caerleon up in Britain). But it's fascinating that you can tell such things from an old, wet oak bole.

(Closeup of one of the Roman pylons, seen from downstream. Notice the sharp wedge that was intended to break ice shoals in spring, and prevent flotsam like broken trees from cluttering up and damaging the bridge.)

In the long run, wooden bridges aren't good enough for real Romans, though. The first stone bridge, about 8 metres downriver from the present one, dates to AD 71. There is an earlier date (AD 45) floating around on that place called internet, but that looks like the result of several website scribes copying an outdated manuscript. The date of AD 71 is dendrochronologically confirmed now.

That puts the construction of the stone bridge to the time of the Emperor Vespasian, shortly after the Batavian rebellion, the big mess along the lower Rhine that eventually spread to parts of Gaul. You may remember that one of the battles of that uprising - after the Treveri joined the fun - took place around and on the bridge of Trier. Took the Romans their sweet time to defeat the rebels, too, but they managed in the end, thanks to Cerialis. I admit I had to read Tacitus' account twice to make sense what legion was where and who was fighting whom. That guy never heard about 'linear writing', I suspect. Or maybe the Romans indeed didn't know where their legions were and whom they supported. But that's something us auxiliaries only talk about when no Roman centurion is around. So don't tell the wrong people I said that.

The wooden bridge survived, but it fit well with Vespasian's rebuilding program (remember the Isis temple in Moguntiacum), to sponsor a new and better bridge to show the inhabitants of Augusta Treverorum that being part of the Roman Empire had its advantages. The town got a pretty new forum with a stone basilica as well and some new insulae with water flushing, so everyone said they were very sorry about the mess and would not revolt again.

The bridge seen from the direction of Luxembourg downriver

If you wonder how a stone bridge can be dated with a method in need for timber, there's an explanation: timber was used during the construction process of the pylons. The same method would be used for the second stone bridge which I helped building - as far as the Romans trust us auxiliaries with the job; it was mostly shoveling mud and carrying stones. So I know how it's done.

The Romans first erected a casing of double cantilevered retaining walls filled with clay, then pumped the water out of the encased area, dug out enough soil to reach the rock beneath and set up a solid stone foundation on which the pylons rested. The whole was fixed with opus cementitium. The bridge had 13 stone pylons with a timber superstructure. Remains of those wooden retaining walls, together with the stone foundations, have been found in the Moselle riverbed where they can still be seen at low water.

The third bridge, constructed in the same technique, can be dated to AD 144-157. The town had expanded considerably to about 5000 inhabitants and the old stone bridge was too small to deal with the increasing traffic (that's a very modern problem, Gabriele says). So our venerated Emperor Antoninus Pius decided to have an even larger bridge built. It was ten metres wide (the old one 'only' 6.5 metres).

Another photo of the bridge in the evening twilight

Those photos Gabriele took look a bit different from the bridge I know. Not the entire bridge spanning the Moselle is Roman, ony the pylons - the pillars made of the grey stone supporting the reddish brick archs - are still Roman and almost 1850 years old. Originally there had been nine pylons but only five remain; the others fell victim to the training of the Moselle after the Second Great War (what they call WW2). The Porta Inclyta, the bridge gate, had already been dismantled in the 19th century. Stupid people from the Future.

The pylons have a kernel of a mix of quarry stones and opus cementitum (a typical Roman technique) that is faced with large lava basalt cuboids we got from a nearby inactive volcano. They are connected by iron clamps; the whole thing, foundations and pylons, is 14 metres high and carries a wooden superstructure. That makes the bridge high enough so that the ships don't have to take down their mast when the water level is normal. The ships use sails for the voyage downriver; upriver they need to be hauled because of the strong current.

Closeup of a pylon

I've been told that the wooden superstructure was replaced by brick archs in the 14th century, and later some Gauls tried to blow up the bridge with some odd black powder, but they only got the brick stuff down, not the part we built, neiner, neiner. Our pylons were still good to support another set of brick archs, and the bridge is still in use today.

The Roman Bridge in Trier is today part of the Unesco World Heritage, a list of famous historical buildings. Obviously being on that list involves getting a bit money, too, and with no emperors around to fund repairs that might be a nice thing.

Well, my friends, I've told you everything I know about the Roman Bridge in Augusta Treverorum, and I'll now cross that bridge into town and visit the baths. Tony .... oops, the venerated Antoninus Pius has sponsored a new and large bath, and you know how much I like those.

Oh yes, dear Aelius, I do know. At least I'll also know where to find you next time.

Aelius' Raetian cohort probably wasn't involved in the construction of the bridge, but Aelius gets around a fair bit. *grin*
(To save the interesting comments on the older post, I edited it and reposted with a new datum.)
 


7 Feb 2011
  The Riddle of the Negau Helmet B

The helmet below is considerably older, predating even the Montefortino. It's an Etruscan design from 500-450 BC called Vetulonic or Negau helmet. These helmets are made of bronze, with a comb-shaped ridge across the skull and a protruding rim with a groove right above the rim. They were no longer worn in battle since about 300 BC though. The term 'Negau helmet' goes back to a depot find of 26 such helmets in Negau (today Ženjak in Slovenia) that was discovered in 1811. The proposed time of the helmets' burial is 55-50 BC, some 35 years before the territory was conquered by the Romans.

The 23 remaining helmets can be found in museums all over the world. Several of them have inscriptions on the rim. Now, inscriptions aren't that rare; we got a number of examples from Roman helmets, mostly owner names, numbers of the legion and cohort to classify a helmet as army issue, unspectacular things like that.

Most of the Negau inscriptions were added to the helmets at a later time, assumedly in the 2nd century BC or even later, about 50 BC, and are written in a Celtic language, using a northern Etruscan alphabet. The area where the helmets were found, part of the later Roman province Noricum, was settled by Celtic and Celticised Illyrian tribes in the 2nd century BC, and Etruscan alphabets were still in use then. There are more finds of Celtic texts written in Etruscan alphabets from that time in the Alpes and the Balkans.

Helmet from the Negau find with Germanic inscription
(Exhibition Imperium in Haltern 2010; loan from the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna)

But one helmet, classified as Negau B and today in possession of the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, has a Germanic inscription, also in Etruscan letters. That one's puzzled historians and linguists since 1811 and it's still doing so. The fact that the letters are Etruscan and not Runes is today undisputed (though some similarities between both make the Etruscan alphabets a possible candidate for one of the sources of the Runes). The letters read.
harigastiteiva

The first part most researchers agree on; it's a Germanic name before the first sound shift took place: *Harigasti(z). It consists of two parts: hari (= army, host; the word can be found in Old Norse herjan - to make war, to plunder, hernað - warfare; or in German Heer - army) and gasti(z) (= guest). The name lives on in Hergest and similar forms.

The second part is more tricky. A widely if not unanimously accepted interpretation has been presented by Tom Markey in 2001 (1). He reads it as *teiwa(z) (= god; Indoeuropean *deiwos, also to be found in the Norse Tyr, Anglosaxon Tiw). Thus the inscription would read: "Harigasti, [the priest of] the god".

One argument in favour of this reading are the Celtic inscriptions on the Negau A helmets. Several of those are of the structure: name + 'the diviner', name + 'astral priest of the troop', etc. (since I don't know any Celtic, I've to accept those readings; their Celtic nature at least is undisputed). So the Germanic inscription would follow the same pattern.

Closeup of the inscription

Those helmets were long out of use as armour so a reason they were kept could be a ritual one; maybe as headgear during ceremonies, as status symbol of a chieftain or priest, something like that. It is also known for both the Celts and Germans to sacrifice weapons and armour, so a deposit find of 26 helmets neatly stacked into each other clearly points at some ritual sacrifice. But were the names carved in by the first owners who decided to use the helmets sometime in the 3rd or 2nd century BC (which would make it difficult to explain the German name), or by the ones who deposited the helmets? The inscriptions then could be interpreted as something like: "X, priest of Y, [gives this to the gods]".

The question remains what a helmet with a Germanic inscription and - in case we accept the reading - a German priest were doing among a bunch of helmets with Celtic inscriptions, and Celtic priests, sharing their ritual sacrifice. It must have been someone respected well enough to be trusted with a (sacred?) helmet, but independant enough to keep his German name and religion; not adapting to Celtic culture.

If we assume the date for the burial of about 50 BC to be correct (though I haven't found bullet proof arguments in favour of that date), there could be an explanation because there was some contact between the Celtic kingdom of Noricum and the Germanic Suebi at the time.

Another view of the Negau B

Geographic and even more ethnographic distinctions are not always clear because the Roman sources tend to be vague about, or simply didn't understand, some of the tribal differences and migration patterns. The Suebi, apparently a conglomeration of several Germanic tribes, are a good example for that. Well, at the time in question, one Voccio was king of Noricum (which had originated in an alliance of several Celtic tribes some 150 years prior), and he married his sister off to the Suebic chieftain Ariovistus because he needed his help against the Boii, another Celtic people that kept causing Voccio trouble. They duly got kicked out of Noricum and were obliged to pay tribute to Voccio.

The only source we have about Ariovistus is Caesar's De bello Gallico, not the most reliable text. But what seems clear is that Ariovistus invaded lands of Gallic tribes west of the Rhine - I guess after the fight against the Boii - that had a contract of friendship with Rome, and Rome had to intervene. Caesar managed to defeat Ariovistus in 58 BC; the remains of the Suebi fled back across the Rhine. Caesar mentions one interesting tidbit about Ariovistus: he had learned to speak Celtic (which was obviously unusual).

The next time we hear about the brothers-in-law is 49 BC, when Voccio sent Caesar troops to assisst him in the civil war. So his connection with Ariovistus hadn't hurt his relationship with Caesar, it seems.

So the Norici and the Suebi had contact at that time. There may have been an embassy to conclude the marriage conditions, and later a troop of the Suebi must have fought at the side of the Norici. One can imagine that a German priest may have been allowed to join the ceremonies; maybe he dictated some Celt his name to carve into the helmet, and thus 'Harigasti(z), priest of Teiwa(z)' left behind the oldest written example of a Germanic language. Though such a scenario must remain speculation.


Sources:
(1) Tom Markey, A Tale of Two Helmets: The Negau A and B Inscriptions. In, The Journal of Indo-European Studies, Volume 29, 2001
 




The Lost Fort is a travel and history blog based on my journeys in Germany, the UK, Scandinavia, and central / eastern Europe. It includes virtual town and castle tours with a focus on history, museum visits, hiking tours, and essays on Roman and Mediaeval history, illustrated with my own photos.


This blog is non-commercial.

All texts and photos (if no other copyright is noted) are copyright of Gabriele Campbell.

GDPR Privacy Policy
Contact


My Photo
Name:
Location: Goettingen, Germany

I'm a blogger from Germany with a MA in Literature and History which doesn't pay my bills, so I use it to research blogposts instead. I'm interested in everything Roman and Mediaeval, avid reader and sometimes writer, opera enthusiast, traveller with a liking for foreign languages and odd rocks, photographer, and tea aficionado. And an old-fashioned blogger who still hasn't got an Instagram account.
(See here for Archives for mobile devices)



Anchor links lead to the respective sub-category in the sidebar

Roman Remains
- Germany
- Belgium and France
- Great Britain

Mediaeval and Other Places
- Germany
- England
- Scotland
- Wales
- Denmark
- Norway
- Sweden
- Finland
- Russia
- Estonia
- Latvia
- Lithuania
- Poland
- Czech Republic
- Belgium
- Luxembourg
- France

Hiking Tours and Cruises
- Germany
- United Kingdom
- Scandinavia
- Baltic Sea


Roman Remains

Germany

Traces of a Failed Conquest

Romans at Lippe and Ems
Roman Exhibitions, Haltern am See
Varus Statue, Haltern am See

Romans at the Weser
The Roman Camp at Hedemünden

The Limes and its Forts

Aalen
The Cavalry Fort - Barracks

Osterburken
The Discovery
The Cohort castellum
The Annex Fort
The Garrisons

Saalburg
Introduction
Main Gate
Shrine of the Standards

Temples and Memorials
Mithras Altars in Germania

Romans at Rhine and Moselle

The Villa Rustica in Wachenheim
Introduction
Baths and Toilets
The Cellar

Roman villae at the Moselle
The Villa Urbana in Longuich

Roman Towns

Augusta Treverorum (Trier)
The Amphitheatre
The Aula Palatina
The Imperial Baths
The Porta Nigra
The Roman Bridge

Baudobriga (Boppard)
From Settlement to Fortress

Colonia Ulpia Traiana (Xanten)
History of the Town
The Amphitheatre in Birten

Moguntiacum (Mainz)
The Temple of Isis and Mater Magna


Belgium and France

Roman Towns

Atuatuca Tungrorum (Tongeren)
Roman Remains in Tongeren


Great Britain

Frontiers and Fortifications

The Hadrian's Wall
Introduction
Building the Wall

Wall Forts - Banna (Birdoswald)
The Dark Age Timber Halls

Wall Forts - Segedunum (Wallsend)
Museum, Viewing Tower and Foundations
The Baths

Signal Stations
The Signal Station at Scarborough

Temples and Memorials
The Mithraeum of Brocolita
A Roman Memorial Stone

Roman Towns

Eboracum (York)
Bath in the Fortress
Multiangular Tower

The Romans in Wales

Roman Forts - Isca (Caerleon)
The Amphitheatre
The Baths in the Legionary Fort


Mediaeval and Other Places

Germany

- Towns
- Castles
- Abbeys and Churches
- Reconstructed Sites / Museums

Towns

Braunschweig
Medieaval Braunschweig
Lion Benches in the Castle Square
The Quadriga

Erfurt
Mediaeval Erfurt

Goslar
Mediaeval Goslar

Heiligenstadt
St.Martin's Church
St.Mary's Church

Lübeck
St. Mary's Church, Introduction

Magdeburg
Magdeburg Cathedral
St.Mary's Abbey - An Austere Archbishop
St.Mary's Abbey - Reformation to Reunion

Paderborn
Mediaeval Paderborn

Quedlinburg
Mediaeval Quedlinburg
The Chapter Church

Speyer
The Cathedral: Architecture
Cathedral: Richard Lionheart in Speyer
Jewish Ritual Bath

Stralsund
The Harbour

Treffurt
A Walk through the Town

Wismar
The Old Harbour

Xanten
Mediaeval Xanten
The Gothic House

Castles

Brandenburg (Thuringia)
The Double Castle
Role of the Castle in Thuringian History

Coburg Fortress (Bavaria)
The History of the Fortress
The Architecture

Ebersburg (Harz Mountains)
Power Base of the Thuringian Landgraves
The Marshals of Ebersburg
The Architecture

Hanstein (Thuringia)
Introduction
Otto of Northeim
Heinrich the Lion and Otto IV
The Next Generations

Hardenberg (Lower Saxony)
Introduction
Hardenberg Castle Gardens

Harzburg (Harz Mountains)
The Harzburg and Otto IV

Hohnstein (Harz Mountains)
Origins of the Counts of Hohnstein
The Family Between Welfen and Staufen
A Time of Feuds (14th-15th century)

Kugelsburg (Hessia)
The Counts of Everstein
Troubled Times
War and Decline

Plesse (Lower Saxony)
Rise and Fall of the Counts of Winzenburg
The Lords of Plesse
Architecture / Decline and Rediscovery

Regenstein (Harz Mountains)
Introduction
The Time of Henry the Lion

Scharzfels (Harz Mountains)
Introduction
History

Wartburg (Thuringia)
A Virtual Tour

Weidelsburg (Hessia)
The History of the Castle
The Architecture
The Castle After the Restoration

Smaller Castles / Hidden Treasures

Castles in the Harz Mountains
Stauffenburg

Castles in Northern Hessia
Grebenstein
Reichenbach
Sichelnstein
Sababurg and Trendelburg

Castles in Lower Saxony
Adelebsen Castle: The Keep
Grubenhagen: A Border Castle
Hardeg Castle: The Great Hall
Salzderhelden: A Welfen Seat

Castles at the Weser
Bramburg: River Reivers
Krukenburg: Castle and Chapel
Castle Polle: An Everstein Seat

Castles in Thuringia
Altenstein at the Werra
Castle Normanstein: Introduction
Castle Scharfenstein

Abbeys and Churches

Bursfelde Abbey
The Early History

Helmarshausen Monastery
Remains of the Monastery
The Gospels of Heinrich the Lion

Königslutter Cathedral
The Exterior Decorations

Lippoldsberg Abbey
The Early History
The Interior of the Church

Walkenried Monastery
From Monastery to Museum

Hidden Treasures

Early Mediaeval Churches
Göllingen Monastery: Traces of Byzantine Architecture
Lorsch Abbey: The Carolingian Gate Hall

Churches in the Harz Mountains
Pöhlde Monastery: The Remaining Church
Steinkirche (Scharzfeld): Development of the Cave Church

Churches in Lower Saxony
Wiebrechtshausen: Nunnery and Ducal Burial

Churches at the Weser
Fredelsloh Chapter Church
Vernawahlshausen: Mediaeval Murals

Reconstructed Sites / Museums

Palatine Seat Tilleda
The Defenses

Viking Settlement Haithabu
Haithabu and the Archaeological Museum Schleswig
The Nydam Ship

Open Air Museums
European Bread Museum, Ebergötzen
Open Air Museum Oerlinghausen

Post-Mediaeval Sites
Historical Guns, Coburg Fortress
Vintage Car Museum, Wolfsburg


England

Towns

Chester
Roman and Medieaval Chester

Hexham
The Abbey - Introduction
The Old Gaol

York
Clifford Tower
The Guild Hall
The Minster - Architecture
Monk Bar Gate and Richard III Museum
Museum Gardens
The Old Town
Along the Ouse River

Castles

Alnwick
Malcolm III and the First Battle of Alnwick

Carlisle
Introduction
Henry II and William of Scotland
Edward I to Edward III

Richmond
From the Conquest to King John
From Henry III to the Tudors
The Architecture

Scarborough
From the Romans to the Tudors
From the Civil War to the Present
The Architecture


Scotland

Towns

Edinburgh
Views from the Castle

Stirling
The Wallace Monument

Castles

Doune
A Virtual Tour of the Castle
The Early Stewart Kings
Royal Dower House, and Decline

Duart
Guarding the Sound of Mull

Dunstaffnage
An Ancient MacDougall Stronghold
The Wars of Independence
The Campbells Are Coming
Dunstaffnage Chapel

Stirling
Robert the Bruce and Stirling Castle

Abbeys and Churches

Inchcolm Abbey
Arriving at Inchcolm

Other Historical Sites

Picts and Dalriatans
Dunadd Hill Fort
Staffa

Pre-Historic Orkney
Ring of Brodgar
Skara Brae


Wales

Towns

Aberystwyth
Castle and Coast

Caerleon
The Ffwrwm

Conwy
The Smallest House in Great Britain

Castles

Beaumaris
The Historical Context
The Architecture

Caernarfon
Master James of St.George
The Castle Kitchens

Cardiff
From the Romans to the Victorians

Chepstow
Beginnings unto Bigod
From Edward II to the Tudors
Civil War, Restoration, and Aftermath

Conwy
The History of the Castle
The Architecture

Criccieth
Llywelyn's Buildings
King Edward's Buildings

Manorbier
The Pleasantest Spot in Wales

Pembroke
Pembroke Pictures
The Caves Under the Castle


Denmark

Towns

Copenhagen
To come


Norway

Towns

Oslo
The Fram Museum in Oslo

Castles and Fortresses

Arkershus Fortress in Oslo
Introduction
Akershus at the Time of King Håkon V
Architectural Development

Vardøhus Fortress
Defending the North for Centuries


Sweden

Towns

Stockholm
The Vasa Museum

Historical Landscapes

Gotland
Gnisvärd Ship Setting


Finland

Towns

Porvoo
Mediaeval Porvoo


Russia

Towns

St. Petersburg
Isaac's Cathedral
Smolny Cathedral
Impressions from the The Neva River


Estonia

Towns

Tallinn
The History of Mediaeval Tallinn


Latvia

Towns

Riga
The History of Mediaeval Riga


Lithuania

Historical Landscapes

The Curonian Spit
Geology of the Curonian Spit


Poland

Towns

Gdańsk / Danzig
The History of Mediaeval Gdańsk
Mediaeval and Renaissance Gdańsk

Wrocław / Breslau
The Botanical Garden
The Wrocław Dwarfs


Czech Republic

Towns

Karlovy Vary / Karlsbad
Brief History of the Town

Kutná Hora
The Sedlec Ossuary


Belgium

Towns

Antwerp
The Old Town

Bruges
Mediaeval Bruges

Ghent
Mediaeval Ghent

Tongeren
Roman and Mediaeval Remains


Luxembourg

Towns

Luxembourg City
A Tour of the Town


France

Towns

Strasbourg
A Tour of the Town


Hiking Tours and Cruises

Germany

The Baltic Sea Coast
The Flensburg Firth
Rugia - Jasmund Peninsula and Kap Arkona
Rugia - Seaside Ressort Binz
A Tour on the Wakenitz River

Harz National Park
Arboretum (Bad Grund)
Bode Valley and Rosstrappe Cliff
Ilse Valley and Ilse's Rock
Oderteich Reservoir
Rappbode Reservoir
Views from Harz mountains

Nature Park Meissner-Kaufunger Wald
Hessian Switzerland

Nature Park Solling-Vogler
The Hutewald Forest
The Raised Bog Mecklenbruch

Thuringian Forests
Oberderdorla and Hainich National Park

Rivers and Lakes
The Danube in Spring
Edersee Reservoir
A Rainy Rhine Cruise
The Moselle
Vineyards at Saale and Unstrut
Weser River Ferry
Weser Skywalk

Wildlife
Harz Falcon Park
Ozeaneum Stralsund: The Baltic Sea Life
Ozeaneum Stralsund: The North Sea Life

Seasons
Spring in the Botanical Garden Göttingen
Spring at the 'Kiessee' Lake
Spring in the Rossbach Heath (Meissner)
Memories of Summer
Summer Hiking Tours 2016
Autumn in the Meissner
Autumn at Werra and Weser
Winter at the 'Kiessee' Lake
Winter Wonderland - Views from my Balcony


United Kingdom

Mountains and Valleys
West Highland Railway

The East Coast
By Ferry to Newcastle
Highland Mountains - Inverness to John o'Groats
Some Photos from the East Coast

Scottish Sea Shores
Crossing to Mull
Mull - Craignure to Fionnphort
Pentland Firth
Castles Seen from Afar (Dunollie and Kilchurn)
Staffa
Summer Days in Oban
Summer Nights in Oban

Wild Wales - With Castles
Views of Snowdownia
Views from Castle Battlements

Wildlife
Sea Gulls


Scandinavia

The Hurtigruten-Tour / Norway
A Voyage into Winter
Along the Coast of Norway - Light and Darkness
Along the Coast of Norway - North of the Polar Circle

Norway by Train
From Oslo to Bergen
From Trondheim to Oslo

Wildlife
Bearded Seals
Dog Sledding With Huskies
Eagles and Gulls in the Trollfjord


The Baltic Sea

A Baltic Sea Cruise

The Curonian Spit in Lithuania
Beaches at the Curonian Spit
Geology of the Curonian Spit






Roman History
General Essays

Provinces
- Germania
- Gallia Belgica
- Britannia

Mediaeval History
General Essays

By Country
- Germany
- England
- Scotland
- Wales
- Denmark
- Norway
- Sweden
- Livonia
- Lithuania
- Poland
- Bohemia

Other Times
- Prehistoric Times
- Post-Mediaeval History
-
Miscellanea
- Geology


Roman History

General Essays

The Romans at War

Forts and Fortifications
Exercise Halls
Mile Castles and Watch Towers
Soldiers' Living Quarters
Cavalry Barracks

Roman Militaria

Armour
Early Imperial Helmets
Late Roman Helmets
The Negau B Helmet

Weapons
Weapon Finds at Hedemünden
The pilum
Daggers
Swords

Other Equipment
Roman Saddles

Life and Religion

Religion
The Mithras Cult
Isis Worship
Curse Tablets and Good Luck Charms

Public Life
Roman Transport - Barges
Roman Transport - Amphorae and Barrels
Roman Water Supply

Roman villae
Villa Urbana Longuich
Villa Rustica Wachenheim

Everyday Life
Bathing Habits
Children's Toys
Face Pots

Miscellaneous Essays

The Legend of Alaric's Burial


Germania

Wars and Frontiers

Maps
Romans in Germania

Traces of the Pre-Varus Conquest
Roman Camp Hedemünden
New Finds in 2008

The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest
Museum Park at Kalkriese

The Battle at the Harzhorn
Introduction

Along the Limes
The Cavalry Fort Aalen
Limes Fort Osterburken
Limes Fort Saalburg


Gallia Belgica

The Batavians

The Batavian Rebellion
A Short Introduction


Britannia

Roman Frontiers in Britain

The Hadrian's Wall
Introduction
The Fort at Segedunum / Wallsend


Mediaeval History

General Essays

Mediaeval Art and Craft

Mediaeval Art
Carved Monsters
The Choir Screen in the Cathedral of Mainz
The Gospels of Heinrich the Lion
Mediaeval Monster Carvings
The Viking Treasure of Hiddensee

Medieaval Craftmanship
Goldsmithery
Medical Instruments

Mediaeval Warfare

Mediaeval Weapons
Swords
Trebuchets

Castles and Fortifications
Dungeons and Oubliettes

Essays about Specific Topics

Feudalism

The History of Feudalism
The Beginnings
Feudalism in the 10th Century

Privileges and Special Relationships
The Privilege of the deditio
A Note on handgenginn maðr

The Hanseatic League

The History of the Hanseatic League
Introduction and Beginnings

Hanesatic Architecture
Examples of Brick Architecture

Goods and Trade
Stockfish Trade

The Order of the Teutonic Knights

Wars and Battles
The Conquest of Danzig
The Siege of Vilnius 1390

The Vikings

Viking Ships
The Nydam Ship


Germany

Geneaology

List of Mediaeval German Emperors

Geneaologies
Anglo-German Marriage Connections
Heinrich the Lion's Ancestors

Kings and Emperors

The Salian Dynasty
King Heinrich IV

House Welf and House Staufen
Emperor Otto IV, Introduction

Princes and Lords

Princes
Otto the Quarrelsome of Braunschweig-Göttingen
The Dukes of Braunschweig-Grubenhagen
Otto of Northeim
The Ludowing Landgraves of Thuringia
Albrecht II and Friedrich I of Thuringia

Counts and Local Lords
The Marshals of Ebersburg
The Counts of Everstein
The Counts of Hohnstein
The Lords of Plesse
The Counts of Reichenbach
The Counts of Winzenburg

Famous Feuds

Royal Troubles
Otto IV and Bishop Adalbert II of Magdeburg

Local Feuds
The Lüneburg Succession War
The Thuringian Succession War - Introduction
The Star Wars


England

Kings of England

King Henry IV
King Henry's Lithuanian Crusade

Normans, Britons, Angevins

Great Fiefs - The Honour of Richmond
The Dukes of Brittany and the Honour of Richmond
The Earldom of Richmond and the Duchy of Brittany

Contested Borders

Northumbria
King Stephen's Troubles with King David of Scots


Scotland

Kings of Scots

House Dunkeld
Malcolm III and Northumbria
Struggle for the Throne: Malcolm III to David I
King David and the Civil War, Part 1
King David and the Civil War, Part 2

Houses Bruce and Stewart
Robert the Bruce and Stirling Castle
The Early Stewart Kings

Scottish Nobles and their Quarrels

Clan Feuds
MacLeans and MacDonalds
A Scottish Wedding


Wales

Welsh Princes

The Princes of Gwynedd
The Rise of House Aberffraw

Rebels

A History of Rebellion
From Llywellyn ap Gruffudd to Owain Glyn Dŵr


Denmark

Kings of Denmark

House of Knýtlinga
Harald Bluetooth's Flight to Pomerania

Danish Rule in the Baltic Sea

The Duchy of Estonia
Danish Kings and German Sword Brothers


Norway

Kings of Norway

Foreign Relations
King Eirik's Scottish Marriages
King Håkon V's Swedish Politics
Beginnings of the Kalmar Union

A Time of Feuds

Famous Nobles and their Feuds
Alv Erlingsson of Tønsberg


Sweden

Troubles and Alliances

Scandinavian Unity
Beginnings of the Kalmar Union


Livonia
(Latvia and Estonia)

Towns of the Hanseatic League

Riga
The History of Mediaeval Riga

Tallinn
The History of Mediaeval Tallinn


Lithuania

The Northern Crusades

The Wars in Lithuania
The Siege of Vilnius 1390

Lithuanian Princes

The Geminid Dynasty
Troublesome Cousins - Jogaila and Vytautas


Poland

The Northern Crusades

The Conquest of Pomerania / Prussia
The Conquest of Danzig

Royal Dynasties

The Jagiełłonian Kings
Władysław Jagiełło and the Polish-Lithuanian Union


Bohemia
(Including Silesia and Moravia)

The Bohemian Kings of House Luxembourg
(to come)


Other Times

Prehistoric Times

Germany

Development of Civilisation
European Bread Museum, Ebergötzen
Open Air Museum Oerlinghausen

Orkney

Neolithic Orkney
The Neolithic Landscape of Orkney
Ring of Brodgar
Skara Brae
Life in Skara Brae

Scandinavia

Gotland
The Ship Setting of Gnisvärd


Post-Mediaeval History

Explorers and Discoveries

Explorers
Fram Expedition to the North Pole
Fram Expedition to the South Pole

Discoveries
Otto von Guericke and the Magdeburg Hemispheres
Raising a Wreck, Now and Then (Vasa Museum in Stockholm)

Biographies

European Nobility
Prince Wilhelm Malte of Putbus


Miscellanea

History in Literature and Music

History in Literature

Biographies of German Poets and Writers
Theodor Fontane

Historical Ballads by Theodor Fontane
(Translated by me)
Archibald Douglas
Gorm Grymme
Sir Walter Scott in Abbotsford
The Tragedy of Afghanistan

History in Opera

Belcanto and Historicism
Maria Padilla - Mistress Royal
The Siege of Calais in Donizetti's Opera

Not so Serious History

Romans
Building Hadrian's Wall
Playmobil Romans

Mediaeval Times
Kings Having a Bad Hair Day
The Case of the Vanished Wine Cask

Other
Rules for Writing Scottish Romances
Tourist Kitsch in St.Petersburg


Geology

Geological Landscapes

The Baltic Sea
Geology of the Curonian Spit
Chalk Cliffs on Rugia
Flint Fields on Rugia

The Harz
Bode Valley and Rosstrappe Cliff
The 'Hübichenstein' Rock
Karst Formations in the Southern Harz
The Lonau Falls
The Rhume Springs

Meissner / Kaufunger Wald
Blue Dome near Eschwege
Diabase and Basalt Formations
Karst Formations

Solling-Vogler
Raised Bog Mecklenbruch
Hannover Cliffs

The Shores of Scotland
Staffa

Fossils and Other Odd Rocks

Fossilized Ammonites
The Loket Meteorite


05/05 / 08/05 / 09/05 / 11/05 / 12/05 / 02/06 / 03/06 / 04/06 / 05/06 / 08/06 / 09/06 / 10/06 / 11/06 / 12/06 / 01/07 / 02/07 / 03/07 / 04/07 / 05/07 / 06/07 / 07/07 / 08/07 / 09/07 / 10/07 / 11/07 / 12/07 / 01/08 / 02/08 / 03/08 / 04/08 / 05/08 / 06/08 / 07/08 / 08/08 / 09/08 / 10/08 / 11/08 / 12/08 / 01/09 / 02/09 / 03/09 / 04/09 / 05/09 / 06/09 / 07/09 / 08/09 / 09/09 / 10/09 / 11/09 / 12/09 / 01/10 / 02/10 / 03/10 / 04/10 / 05/10 / 06/10 / 07/10 / 08/10 / 09/10 / 10/10 / 11/10 / 12/10 / 01/11 / 02/11 / 03/11 / 04/11 / 05/11 / 06/11 / 07/11 / 08/11 / 09/11 / 10/11 / 11/11 / 12/11 / 01/12 / 02/12 / 03/12 / 04/12 / 05/12 / 06/12 / 07/12 / 08/12 / 09/12 / 10/12 / 11/12 / 12/12 / 01/13 / 02/13 / 03/13 / 04/13 / 05/13 / 06/13 / 07/13 / 08/13 / 09/13 / 10/13 / 11/13 / 12/13 / 01/14 / 02/14 / 03/14 / 04/14 / 05/14 / 06/14 / 07/14 / 08/14 / 09/14 / 10/14 / 11/14 / 12/14 / 01/15 / 02/15 / 03/15 / 04/15 / 05/15 / 06/15 / 07/15 / 08/15 / 09/15 / 10/15 / 11/15 / 12/15 / 01/16 / 02/16 / 03/16 / 04/16 / 05/16 / 06/16 / 07/16 / 08/16 / 09/16 / 10/16 / 11/16 / 12/16 / 01/17 / 02/17 / 03/17 / 04/17 / 05/17 / 06/17 / 07/17 / 08/17 / 09/17 / 10/17 / 11/17 / 12/17 / 01/18 / 02/18 / 03/18 / 04/18 / 05/18 / 06/18 / 07/18 / 08/18 / 09/18 / 10/18 / 11/18 / 12/18 / 02/19 / 03/19 / 04/19 / 05/19 / 06/19 / 07/19 / 08/19 / 09/19 / 10/19 /


Powered by Blogger