The Middle Ages, or the medieval period, began in the 5th century -
around the time of the decline and fall of the Western Roman Empire.
It ended in the 16th century, coinciding with the Italian Renaissance,
the Protestant Reformation, the beginning of the great European voyages
of exploration and colonization, and the rise of modern-style, royalty based countries.
The European Middle Ages is a fascinating period of world history, characterized by
hundreds of petty feudal states and the cultural dominance of the Roman Catholic Church.
To a great degree, the Catholic Church preserved the arts of reading and writing. Laypeople (those who were not priests, monks or other members of the clergy) were typically illiterate. Heraldry - a symbolic, graphic system of identifying individuals and at least some of their possessions - developed during the
Medieval period because most members of even the ruling and noble classes
could not read.
Some pieces of medieval memorabilia include one or more beautiful, stylized heraldic symbols or identifications that were developed during the middle Ages. Medieval memorabilia can include hundreds of different types of items, including suits of armour, objects bearing family coats-of-arms, and some of the principal artworks of the period - the beautifully illuminated (illustrated) Bibles and other religious books that were painstakingly hand-decorated by religious monks. Medieval memorabilia can even include racks and other instruments of torture, and militaria such as daggers and swords wielded by knights during various tournaments, battles, or the Crusades.
One of the fundamental characteristics of mankind is the urge to surround ourselves with objects that
appeal to us. For some people, the most fascinating thing they could buy, or the most compelling
gift they could possibly receive, is a piece of medieval memorabilia. For those people, getting a piece
of medieval memorabilia for their collection becomes a personal "Crusade."
All authentic pieces of medieval memorabilia are hundreds of years old, and because of their antiquity and scarcity, many authentic pieces are quite valuable. But the main reason people acquire them isn't because
they are valuable - it's because the collector is fascinated by the items. The advent of the internet and online shopping has made the acquisition of medieval memorabilia a much easier task than it used to be - memorabilia sellers around the world are now easily accessible to collectors. And modern reproductions of medieval memorabilia are often inexpensive, but quite interesting pieces - especially when they are faithful to the originals or use authentic or derivative medieval designs.
Both authentic and reproduction pieces of medieval memorabilia add a bit of spice to any home's decor, and a lot of spice to a collector's life. Buy a special piece of medieval memorabilia relating to a special part of history - the Middle Ages.
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