Melancholia and Euphemisms from the 17th century to now: John Dowland and Sting

Lasting art is startling in its provocativeness and sensuality, whether it’s just been released, or if it’s 500 years old.  Music is especially striking because it is living – each time it is performed it is renewed, recreated, regenerated.  No two performances are exactly the same, and it’s that living, breathing aspect of it that I…

Medieval gay royal scandals, buddhist David Hume, and a really boring Queen: a roundup of history articles online this week.

Three of the best history-themed articles I’ve read this week.  Scandal, drama, buddhism in 18th century Europe, and boring vanilla queens.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.   From historytoday.com:  http://www.historytoday.com/js-hamilton/menage-roi-edward-ii-and-piers-gaveston For nearly 700 years people have been debating whether a) Edward II was gay, and b) if he was in a romantic relationship with…

Medieval Monks and Nuns weren’t as Promiscuous as We All Think They Were

I recently came across a post on medievalists.net about a thesis by Christian D. Knudsen concerning sexual misconduct in convents and monastic houses.  The idea that the monasteries were corrupt, and in “decline” just before the Dissolution is a narrative that has been largely unchallenged for 500 years, and in that light the Dissolution undertaken…