Useful reference sites

Here are some of the websites that I've found to be particularly useful for primary source material. I aim to update this post as and when I find more useful websites.

Medieval Manuscripts Unlocked
My medieval manuscript blog, where you can find links to a wide range of online manuscript facsimiles.

This website belongs to a UK reenactment group and, under their 'History' link, has a large compendium of photos of effigies and brasses, divided into female, male (civilian), male (martial) and clergy. The majority of the images are from monuments in the UK; however, there are also ones from Germany and more are added reasonably often. Each page contains all the images for that section, listed in date order. This can be slightly annoying as the pages take quite a while to load. However, the photographs are, in general, of good quality and link to an extra-large version. Most monuments have two photos (one full length, one of head/shoulders). Also, photos are sometimes given of the weepers found around the tomb's base. All in all, it is a fantastic resource.

This site by Mike Zander does exactly as it says on the tin - it is a database of images of effigies and brasses from locations throughout Europe, including Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. You can search by name, date and country, plus specify male/female and civilian/clergy/martial. New entries are regularly added. The main advantages of this site over the previous one is the larger range of countries, plus there being some extras which aren't on the previous (though the reverse is also true). In addition to linking to photographs, there are also copies of sketches from books and rubbings from brasses - although these are not necessarily as reliable as actual photographs, they are useful in that they often represent monuments for which there are no photographs available on the internet.

A sister site to 'Effigies & Brasses', this one is a database of manuscript illustrations. It is searchable by date, country or tags. Alternatively, you can select a manuscript of your choice and look through illustrations from it. The vast majority of illustrations have the correct manuscript citation and a link to a digital facsimile.

Another searchable database by the wonderful Mike Zander. This one contains all art that depicts armour, except for that in effigies, brasses or manuscript illustrations (as those are covered by his other sites). Thus, it includes frescoes, altars, carvings, etc. The date range is 1100-1450 and, as with his other sites, numerous European countries are represented.

This site by Karen Larsdatter is a great resource to find primary and secondary sources for specific topics, ranging from animals to craftsmen to clothing to furniture. The topics are divided into groups, accessible via the sitemap page. Each topic has a chronological list of links to images of it - both primary (e.g. archaeological finds) and secondary (e.g. drawings in manuscripts). The only limitations of the site are obvious ones - it is only useful if the topic you are interested in is listed. Also, the lists of links are not definitive (something that is not really possible!) and are sometimes broken (though the proper manuscript references are given so you can often find the image via your favourite search engine). However, it is a great starting point for research.

Hamline University Brass Rubbings Collection
Exactly what it says - a searchable online database of the Hamline collection of c. 1000 brass rubbings from the 14th Century onwards.

CBA Research Reports
Online PDFs of the CBA (Council for British Archaeology) reports #1-100 (1955-2007). Lots and lots of dig reports!

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