Heritage > Medieval Life
Life in the middle ages was much, much harder than it is now. By 1200 AD life was more settled than it had been in the past but although Europe was a more settled place it was certainly not peaceful. There were wars, crusades and peasant revolts. There was plague starvation and great contrasts in living standards between rich and poor.
For most of the population who worked in the countryside life was peaceful most of the time. Trade flourished and towns grew and prospered. New industries were set up and luxury goods reached Europe from the far corners of the world. Skilled craftsmen built magnificent castles and cathedrals.
We know about life in the middle ages from many sources. Thousands of medieval buildings are still standing, and many everyday objects used by both rich and poor people are preserved in museums throughout Europe. Medieval people wrote books and letters about important events as they happened and many of these have survived for us to read. We can also consult the detailed accounts they kept of their business and farming activities. Even some of the poems and songs which delighted medieval audiences have been preserved in manuscripts, so we can listen to them and enjoy them today.
"The Medieval Street" will let you learn more about the people and the society of the middle ages. By selecting different people who are on the street today you can learn about such things as the feudal system and how to live like a lord. There are also several shockwave games where you can enter an archery tournament or even throw rotten tomatoes at the town thief.
To play the games and to hear the audio track you will need to have the shockwave player installed in your browser. Don't worry if you haven't got the plug-in yet because you can download it from Macromedia by using the link below. If you really don't want to get the plug-in then you can still go to the village but you will not hear the audio and you will be unable to play the games.
When you are ready to enter the village just click on the juggler.