Session: #22

Theme & Session Format

6. Material culture studies and societies
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

A United Europe of Things 2. Large Scale and Local Networks of Differences and Similarities in Medieval Material Culture
The idea of ‘unity of culture’ of Medieval Latin Europe is well known in historical literature, especially when it concerns the so called ‘Europe North of Alps’. Scholars had often inclined that due to long distance trade, universal knowledge of Latin and shared religious ideas we can observe cultural similarities all over Late Medieval Europe. Our question is whether a similar trend is visible in portable material culture? To be more precise what are the similarities and differences in portable material culture, ‘in and between’ regions, during the period AD 1000 to AD 1550.
The first session on this theme was held at the EAA 2019 in Bern and enjoyed great interest and a large audience. Then most papers were focused mostly on North-West Europe, raising a need for a broader European perspective. We hope that more interregional focus will allow us to observe networks of material culture in different social and economic contexts across time. Broadening the chronology also opens discussion on the appearance and disappearance of small finds in burials in some parts of Europe, and thus, allows us to have an insight on the impact of material culture through changes in religious belief.
We will accept papers concerning full and late medieval (1000-1550) material culture focusing on:
- finds that are typical in regions as well as their comparison with other regions
- possible borders and peripheries of a common material culture
- interactions between local material culture and imported objects
- production, consumption and interregional exchange
- grave finds and their presence in burials (impoverishment of cemeteries)
material culture, interregional studies, interpreting material culture, digital humanities, Pan-European horizon, grave goods
Session associated with MERC:
Session associated with CIfA:
Session associated with SAfA:
Session associated with CAA:
Session associated with DGUF:
Session associated with other:


Main organiser:
Jakub Sawicki (Czech Republic) 1
Michael Lewis (United Kingdom) 2,3
Mária Vargha (Austria) 4
1. Institute of Archaeology, Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague
2. British Museum
3. Portable Antiquities Scheme
4. Universität Wien, Institut für Geschichte, Digital Humanities