Research Materials

If you’re looking for information on the life and times of 13th-century France, you might find some of these sources helpful. To provide an idea of scope and context, my focus was on the years 1233–1260 in Toulouse, Paris, and Chartres. Subjects include theology, philosophy, science/natural philosophy, technology, medicine, cathedral architecture, the University of Paris (up to 1245), the aftermath of the Albigensian Crusade and the Catholic-Cathar conflict, the beginnings of inquisitorial procedure, fortifications and warfare, and all aspects of daily life.

I’ve included a handful of online sources, but most of the items here are printed texts.

Daily life

Daily Life in the Middle Ages, Paul B. Newman
Damsels Not in Distress, Andrea Hopkins
Life in a Medieval Castle, Joseph and Frances Gies
Life in a Medieval City, Joseph and Frances Gies
Marriage and the Family in the Middle Ages, Joseph and Frances Gies
Medieval People, Eileen Power
Medieval Women, Eileen Power
Men and Women at Toulouse in the Age of the Cathars, John H. Mundy
Misconceptions About the Middle Ages, Stephen J. Harris and Bryon L. Grigsby (eds.)
Montaillou, Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie
Paris in the Middle Ages, Simone Roux
Paris, 1200, John Baldwin
Penguin Historical Atlas of the Medieval World
Surviving Poverty in Medieval Paris, Sharon Farmer
Those Terrible Middle Ages!, Régine Pernoud
Women in the Middle Ages, Frances and Joseph Gies

General history; military history; religious history

Albigensian Crusade, The, Joseph R. Strayer
Bridges of Medieval Paris, On the, Virginia Wylie Egbert
Cathars, The, Malcolm Lambert
Celts, The, Gerard Herm
Civilization of the Middle Ages, The, Norman Cantor
Crusaders, The, Regine Pernoud
Fiefs and Vassals: The Medieval Evidence Reinterpreted, Susan Reynolds
Heresy, Crusade, and Inquisition in Southern France, 1100-1250, Walter L. Wakefield
History of Europe, A, J.M. Roberts
Inquisition, The, Edwards Peters
Massacre at Montségur, Zoé Oldenbourg
Mediaeval Heresy & the Inquisition, A.S. Turberville
Middle Ages, The, Morris Bishop
Perfect Heresy, The, Stephen O’Shea
Society and Government at Toulouse in the Age of the Cathars, John H. Mundy
Studies in the Ecclesiastical and Social History of Toulouse in the Age of the Cathars, John H. Mundy
Templars, The, Piers Paul Read

Medieval and classical texts

Aeneid, The, Virgil; Robert Fagles (trans.)
Almagest, Ptolemy; G.J. Toomer (trans.)
Apocalyptic Spirituality, Bernard McGinn (trans.)
Bible (various versions)
Canon of Medicine, The, Avicenna; Laleh Bakhtiar (adapt.)
Compendium of Theology, Thomas Aquinas; Cyril Vollert (trans.)
Consolation of Philosophy, The, Boethius; Victor Watts (trans.)
Contemptu Mundi, De: On Contempt for the World, Bernard de Cluny; Ronald E. Pepin (trans.)
Divine Names, The, Pseudo-Dionysius; Colm Luibheid (trans.)
Elements, The, Euclid; Thomas L. Heath (trans.)
Experimental Science, On,” from Opus Majus, Roger Bacon
History of the Albigensian Crusade, The, Peter of les Vaux-de-Cernay; W.A. Sibly and M.D. Sibly (trans.)
Incoherence of the Incoherence, The, Averroes; Simon Van den Bergh (trans.)
Letter of Petrus Peregrinus on the Magnet, A.D. 1269, The, Petrus Peregrinus; Brother Arnold (trans.)
Life of St. Julian the Hospitaller, The,” Anonymous; Tony Devaney Morinelli (trans.)
Liber Iuratus Honorii: The Sworn Book of Honorious, Anonymous; Joseph H. Peterson (ed.)
Life of the Students at Paris, Jacobus de Vitriaco; Dana Carlton Munro (ed.: in The Medieval Student)
Multiplication Specierum, De: The Multiplication of Species, Roger Bacon; David C. Lindbergh (trans.: in Roger Bacon’s Philosophy of Nature)
Mystical Theology, The, Pseudo-Dionysius; Colm Luibheid (trans.)
Nature of Things, On the, Lucretius; Charles E. Bennett (trans.)
Nichomachean Ethics, Aristotle; Richard McKeon (ed.: in The Basic Works of Aristotle)
Organon, Aristotle; Richard McKeon (ed.: in The Basic Works of Aristotle)
Physica, Hildegard von Bingen; Priscilla Throop (trans.)
Privilege of Philip Augustus in Favor of the Students at Paris, 1200, King Philip Augustus; Dana Carlton Munro (ed.: in The Medieval Student)
Psychomachia, Prudentius; H.J. Thomson (trans.)
Romance of the Rose, Guillaume de Lorris and Jean de Meun; Frances Horgan (trans.)
Secretum Secretorum, M. A. Manzalaoui (ed.)
Sentences, The, Peter Lombard; Giulio Silano (trans.)
Sic et Non (Prologue), Peter Abelard; W. J. Lewis (trans.)
Song of the Cathar Wars, The, William of Tuleda and Anonymous; Janet Shirley (trans.)
Songs of the Troubadour Women, Matilda Tomaryn Bruckner, Laurie Shepard, and Sarah White (trans.)
Statutes of Gregory IX for the University of Paris, 1231, Pope Gregory IX; Dana Carlton Munro (ed.: in The Medieval Student)
Statutes of Robert de Courcon for Paris, 1215, Robert de Courcon; Dana Carlton Munro (ed.: in The Medieval Student)
Summa Theologica, Thomas Aquinas; Fathers of the English Dominican Province (trans.)
Ten Errors Condemned at Paris, 1241, Dana Carlton Munro (ed.: in The Medieval Student)
Timaeus, Plato; Peter Kalkavage (trans.)
Trotula: A Medieval Compendium of Women’s Medicine, The, Trotula; Monica H. Green (trans.)
Tumbler of Our Lady and Other Miracles, Alice Kemp-Welch (ed.)


Hildegard of Bingen’s Medicine, Wighard Strehlow and Gottfried Hertzka
Medicine Before Science: The Business of Medicine from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance, Roger French
Medieval & Early Renaissance Medicine, Nancy Siraisi
Wandering Womb, The: A Cultural History of Outrageous Beliefs About Women, Lana Thompson
(See the list of medieval and classical texts for more)

Philosophy and theology

Abelard: A Medieval Life, M. T. Clanchy
Aquinas 101, Francis Selman
Aristotle for Everybody, Mortimer J. Adler
Bible in the Early Middle Ages, The, Robert E. McNally
Cambridge Companion to Aquinas, The, Norman Kretzmann and Eleonore Stump (eds.)
Cambridge Companion to Aristotle, The, Jonathan Barnes
Cambridge Companion to Medieval Philosophy, The, A. S. McGrade, (ed.)
Closing of the Western Mind, Charles Freeman
Evolution of Medieval Thought, The, David Knowles
Expository Hermeneutics, Elliot Johnson
Great Conversation, The, Norman Melchert
History of the End of the World, A, Jonathan Kirsch
History of Western Philosophy, A, Bertrand Russell
How to Read the Bible, James L. Kugel
Introduction to Scholastic Theology, Ulrich G. Leinsle
Medieval World View, The, William R. Cook and Ronald B. Herzman
Mind of the Middle Ages, The, Frederick Artz
Philosophy and Civilization in the Middle Ages, Maurice DeWulf
Story of Philosophy, The, Bryan Magee
Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, James Strong
(See the list of medieval and classical texts for more)

University life

Censure and Heresy at the University of Paris, J. M. M. H. Thijssen
History of the University in Europe, A, Vol I,
Hilde de Ridder-Symoens
Life in the Medieval University, Robert S. Rait
Trivium, The, Sister Mirian Joseph
Universities of Europe in the Middle Ages, The, Hastings Rashdall
University in Medieval Life, 1179-1499, The, Hunt Janin
University of Toulouse in the Middle Ages, Cyril Eugene Smith
(See the list of medieval and classical texts for more)

Science/natural philosophy and technology

Ascent of Sciences, The, Brian L. Silver
Beginnings of Western Science, The, David C. Lindberg
Cathedral, Forge, and Waterwheel, Frances and Joseph Gies
First Scientist, The, Clegg, Brian
God’s Philosophers: How the Medieval World Laid the Foundations of Modern Science, James Hannam
History of Magic and Experimental Science, Lynn Thorndike
History of Mathematics, A, Carl B. Boyer
Medieval Fortress, The, J.E. Kaufmann and H.W. Kaufmann
Rethinking the Medieval Senses, Stephen G. Nichols, Andreas Kablitz, and Alison Calhoun (eds.)
Roger Bacon and His Search for a Universal Science, Stewart C. Easton
Science and the Secrets of Nature, William Eamon
Science in the Middle Ages, David C. Lindberg (ed.)
Seeing and Being Seen in the Later Medieval World, Dallas George Denery
Symmetry: The Ordering Principle, David Wade
Theories of Vision from al-Kindi to Kepler, David C. Lindberg

Architecture and art

Architector: The Lodge Books and Sketchbooks of Medieval Architects, Francois Bucher
“Architectural Geometry and the Portfolio of Villard de Honnecourt,” Nigel Hiscock (in Villard’s Legacy, ed. Marie-Therese Zenner)
Art and Beauty in the Middle Ages, Umberto Eco
“Astronomy, Time, and Churches in the Early Middle Ages,” Stephen C. McClusky (in Villard’s Legacy, ed. Marie-Therese Zenner)
Cathar Castles, Marcus Cowper
Cathedral of the Black Madonna, Jean Markale
Cathedral: The Story of Its Construction, David Macaulay
Chartres and the World of the Cathedral, Titus Burckhardt
Chartres Cathedral, Malcolm Miller
Chartres Cathedral, Robert Branner (ed.)
Chartres: Sacred Geometry, Sacred Space, Gordon Strachan
Construction of Gothic Cathedrals, The, John Fitchen
Gothic Architecture and Scholasticism, Erwin Panofsky
Gothic Architecture, Paul Frankl
Gothic Cathedral, The, Christopher Wilson
Gothic Enterprise, The, Robert A. Scott
Master Masons of Chartres, The, John James
Portfolio of Villard de Honnecourt, The, Carl F. Barnes
Stone Skeleton, The, Jacques Heyman
Story of Art, The, E.H. Gombrich
Universe of Stone, Philip Ball
Why Buildings Fall Down, Matthys Levy and Mario Salvadori
Why Buildings Stand Up, Mario Salvadori
World of Chartres, The, Jean Favier

Subjects miscellaneous

Art of Memory, The, Frances A. Yates
Code Book, The, Simon Singh
Codebreakers, The, David Kahn
Dictionnaire historique des rues de Paris, Jacques Hillairet
Dictionnaire administratif et historique des rues de Paris et de ses monuments, Félix Lazare and Louis Clément Lazare
Dictionnaire occitan-français, français-occitan, André Lagarde
Encyclopedia of Face and Form Reading, Mary Olmstead Stanton
Hidden Codes & Grand Designs, Pierre Berloquin
Friar and the Cipher, The, Lawrence and Nancy Goldstone