82 episodes

On Medieval Death Trip, we feature a selected medieval text (often historical, occasionally literary) that touches on the odd, the gruesome, the unexpected, and similarly curious incidents, images, or ideas. In addition to presenting the text itself, each episode features commentary and musings upon that text.

Medieval Death Trip Medieval Death Trip

    • Books

On Medieval Death Trip, we feature a selected medieval text (often historical, occasionally literary) that touches on the odd, the gruesome, the unexpected, and similarly curious incidents, images, or ideas. In addition to presenting the text itself, each episode features commentary and musings upon that text.

    MDT Ep. 79: Concerning Cursed Christmas Carolers and an Unlikely Bishop

    MDT Ep. 79: Concerning Cursed Christmas Carolers and an Unlikely Bishop

    This Christmas Eve episode, we return to the Gesta Regum Anglorum of William of Malmesbury, to learn hear some legends of Saxony, including some overly boisterous Christmas revelers cursed to continue their revels for a whole year without rest.

    Today's Text:
    William of Malmesbury. Chronicle of the Kings of England. Edited by J.A. Giles, translated by John Sharpe and J.A. Giles, George Bell & Sons, 1895.


    References
    Hecker, J.F.C. The Epidemics of the Middle Ages. Translated by B.G. Babington, 3rd ed., Trübner & Co., 1859.

    McDougall, Sara. "Bastard Priests: Illegitimacy and Ordination in Medieval Europe." Speculum, vol. 94, no. 1, Jan. 2019, pp. 138-172.

    Thomas, Edith M. "The Christmas Dancers: A Legend of Saxony." The Century, vol. 59, no. 2, Dec. 1899, pp. 165-173.

    • 29 min
    MDT Ep. 78: Concerning the Character of William Rufus and Some Scandalous Shoes

    MDT Ep. 78: Concerning the Character of William Rufus and Some Scandalous Shoes

    This episode, we explore a character analysis of an unpopular leader, as William of Malmesbury explains how the virtues of William Rufus transformed into his greatest vices. Along the way, we also learn why pointy shoes are indicators of moral degradation.

    Today's Texts:
    William of Malmesbury. Chronicle of the Kings of England. Edited by J.A. Giles, translated by John Sharpe and J.A. Giles, George Bell & Sons, 1895.

    Orderic Vitalis. The Ecclesiastical History of England and Normandy. Vol. 2. Translated by Thomas Forester, Henry G. Bohn, 1854.

    • 35 min
    MDT Ep. 77: Concerning Some Demons of the Lanercost Chronicle (and a Revenant)

    MDT Ep. 77: Concerning Some Demons of the Lanercost Chronicle (and a Revenant)

    This Halloween, we celebrate our fifth anniversary with five terrifying tales of demonic activity from the Lanercost Chronicle.

    Today's Text:
    The Chronicle of Lanercost: 1272–1346. Translated by Herbert Maxwell, James Maclehose and Sons, 1913.

    • 27 min
    MDT Ep. 76: Concerning a Glimpse into 15th-Century School Life

    MDT Ep. 76: Concerning a Glimpse into 15th-Century School Life

    We return from our hiatus with an exploration of life in Tudor grammar school classroom, as described in a compilation of translation exercises composed for his students by a master of the Magdalen School, Oxford.

    Today's Text:
    Nelson, William, editor. A Fifteenth Century Schoolbook: From a Manuscript in the British Museum (MS. Arundel 249). Oxford, 1956. https://archive.org/details/fifteenthcentury00nelsuoft.

    • 30 min
    MDT Vacation Bonus: Dragonslayer Film Commentary

    MDT Vacation Bonus: Dragonslayer Film Commentary

    As a treat to all of our listeners while the regular show is on vacation for July, here's the commentary track I made for the 1981 film Dragonslayer. This was originally released this past winter just to our Patreon supporters, but now everyone can get have chance to enjoy it. Note that this includes a long introduction featuring a reading of the legend of St. George and the Dragon. If you want to jump straight to the actual commentary synced to the film, you'll need to skip ahead to around the 18-minute mark of the file.

    • 2 hrs 7 min
    MDT Ep. 75: Concerning More Challenges to the Throne of Man

    MDT Ep. 75: Concerning More Challenges to the Throne of Man

    This episode we encounter another saintly curse, this time at the hands of St. Maughold, the patron saint of the Isle of Man, and on our way to that miracle story, we catch up on the trials and tribulations of the Manx dynasty of Godred Crovan since we last saw them in Ep. 44. As a bonus, we'll also hear the origin story of St. Maughold, a.k.a. MacCuil the bandit, a.k.a., Cyclops, as recorded in Muirchu's Life of St. Patrick.

    Today's Texts:
    The Chronicle of Man and the Sudreys. Edited by P.A. Munch, translated by Alexander Goss, vol. 1, The Manx Society, 1874. Google Books.

    Muirchu. Life of St. Patrick. St. Patrick: His Writings and Life, edited and translated by Newport J.D. White, Macmillan, 1920.

    References:
    Kinvig, R.H. The Isle of Man: A Social, Cultural, and Political History. Charles E. Tuttle, 1975.

    Mood, A.W. The Folk-Lore of the Isle of Man. Brown & Son, 1891. Sacred-texts.com.

    • 40 min

Customer Reviews

DerekF94 ,

Wacky medieval history, great host

I started listening to MDT while working on my undergrad to get more exposure to medieval texts (even if it is the weirdest and wackiest ones), and Patrick did not disappoint! It’s a great pairing of translated text and Patrick’s knowledgeable insight and explanation. As a host, he’s found a balance of personal and academic that I love. Highly recommended, on the condition that you’re into medieval history. 👍🏼👍🏼

Sixelsixel ,

Interesting and Relaxing

Not only does this podcast cover a ton of interesting facts and stories from Medieval texts, it's also well edited and well produced - I enjoy listening when I'm winding down from the day as the host has a calming voice. I only wish I could give it more stars!

melissajayne80 ,

Interweaving history

Love how the host interweaves the history of the documents that he discusses with more modern illustrations.

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