research and other wanderings - see my website! There are comics and a store and everything: Hark! A Vagrant
Origins unknown Origins unknown Einsiedeln, Stiftsbibliothek, 339 (15th c) Einsiedeln, Stiftsbiblothek, 149 (10th c) Einsiedeln, Stiftsbibliothek, 358 (12th c) Engelberg, Stiftsbibliothek, 3 (12th c) Einsiedeln, Stiftsbibliothek, 301 (10th c) Darmouth Incun 125 (dated 1496)


Fun Medieval Doodles

Here is a small selection of doodles I tweeted over the past year (@erik_kwakkel). Although they are usually not exactly eye-candy, they are easy to like. I think this is because they are often very funny, but also because the activity is such a familiar one. Almost without thinking we ourselves doodle on notepads, post-it notes or in the margin of the newspaper.

While our drawings are often the result of boredom, in the Middle Ages there was often a more pragmatic rationale behind their creation. In some cases they were a response to the text, such as the Adam and Eve doodle above. Moreover, many were the fruit of correcting the nib of the pen, like the little dog’s head. They are the medieval equivalent, as it were, of our scratching on a piece of paper to get the ink flowing.

In other cases still it remains a mystery what the doodling scribe was thinking. Why draw the skeleton that seems to hold a glass, for example? Is it a warning that our enjoying the delights of this planet will ultimately come to an end? A medieval campaign against riding your horse while under influence? Whatever the meaning of this poor guy with his drink may be, and in spite of the fact we are reminded of our own mortality, sketches like this do brighten the page - and my day.

  1. cyanidelacedcoffee reblogged this from erikkwakkel
  2. unapologeticgleek reblogged this from medievalart
  3. emilyauditore reblogged this from cattheterrible
  4. passionateabouthistory reblogged this from erikkwakkel
  5. yuno-what-it-is reblogged this from medievalart
  6. fiftysevenacademics reblogged this from shredsandpatches
  7. armillaryarchitect reblogged this from pythias
  8. elvesandberries reblogged this from instantdiamond
  9. instantdiamond reblogged this from shroudsinvenice
  10. shroudsinvenice reblogged this from shredsandpatches
  11. elszefont reblogged this from a-hidden-lemon
  12. a-hidden-lemon reblogged this from arthnoldpendraghost
  13. naranjaoraculo reblogged this from medievalart
  14. arroganceundaunted reblogged this from medievalart
  15. satis75 reblogged this from medievalart
  16. historyandlearning reblogged this from watsonianfangirl
  17. watsonianfangirl reblogged this from shredsandpatches
  18. hodie-scolastica reblogged this from medievalart
  19. johnconley reblogged this from undeadlosersanonymous
  20. undeadlosersanonymous reblogged this from medievalart
  21. jenpowroznyk reblogged this from westerosbastard