Frequently Asked Questions
Why didn't you reply to the email I sent you?
- The most common reason is that you didn't type your email
address properly, so when I tried to reply, it bounced. Also,
sometimes it can take up to a month for me to reply, if my "real life"
Can you send me some other material?
- No. Everything I have available is on the website.
Your best resource for other information is your local library.
Ask a librarian to help you; you'd be amazed what is in a library, or
available via Inter Library Loan. It's easy.
Can I link to your site? Can I duplicate your articles on
- Linking to sites is something that you don't have to ask about;
it's assumed that it's ok by most people with websites. Copying
the content though, is
something different. I do not give permission for my content to
be copied to other sites. Just to be sure you know, all my stuff is
copyright by me unless I say otherwise.
Can I run one of your articles in my local SCA (or other)
- Probably. Drop me a note first, though. The key
things are to include my copyright notice, and to include a link to my
webpage, so that folks can get updates, or look at the pictures in a
larger format or in color.
I have to do a report on medieval bakers (or other
tradesperson) but I can't find what they wore.
- As near as I can tell, most of the medieval professions were
likely to dress according to their wealth/poverty, than according to
their profession. So a well off baker would dress one way, and a
one, a different way. Of course, if their profession needed
functional clothing on top of that, such as an apron, they'd wear that,
too. Your best bet would be to find a book about that trade
I have to do a report on the clothes. What books should I
- See if your Inter Library Loan person can find some of the
books listed on my Further Reading
What were the special meanings of the clothes they wore in the
- Do your socks have a special message? Does your shirt
something other than "I need to wear a shirt because otherwise I'd be
chilly or indecent?" Somehow many people have the idea that
in the middle ages was highly ritualized, but for most things, it just
was clothing. Now, if you were a priest, the various accessories
have specific meanings about what you believed, such as the ___
signifying __, but for your average person, it was just clothing.
How could they wear such crazy things?
- Clothing fashions go through an organic process of development;
in the middle ages as well as today. These days, fashions change
rapidly, and die away, and then get revivals, all within the space of a
few decades. In the middle ages, it took longer, that's
long ago, there was a fashion amonst young people to have artfully torn
jeans. Now, if you think about that, jeans which are torn are not
going to do as good a job of protecting your legs as jeans which are
not. But that was the fashion, so some kids wore them. And
probably didn't seem crazy to them at the time.
There are other, more
enduring modern fashions which have even less to do with
Tight bands of silk around men's necks; ankle- and toe-torturing high
heels for women. But these things are accepted as normal.
So it was
with some of the crazy clothes in the middle ages.
How can you say ___ (whatever position you think is wrong?)
- The information on my webpages is as accurate as I can make
it. If you have contrary evidence, I would love to know about