This page provides links to other websites and videos (available online)) that offer signfiicant information about medieval London.
British History Online is a digital library for many of the most important primary and secondary sources for the medieval and early modern history of the British Isles and Ireland. Founded by the Institute of Historical Research (University of London) and the History of Parliament Trus, it is the largest single source of digitized material for the history of medieval London, including most of the primary sources printed by the London Record Society, the London Letter Books, many of the medieval chronicles, and a wide variety of other materials. Also included are databasets and transcriptions of such sources as the London Sheriff’s Roll for 1320, markets and borough privileges in the hinterland of medieval London, pleaded cases for London litigants or disputed events supposed to have taken place at London, heard before the Court of Common Pleas in selected years, 1399-1500, and other materials.
The Mayors and Sheriffs of London is the authoritative list of men who served as mayor or sheriff of London, 1190-1558. The searchable database includes their names, terms of office, and their guild/company or occupation. Also included is useful information and bibliogaphy about spelling of names, the major guilds and companies, and the sources employed.
“Historical References to London’s Sounds” at Sound and History website. Can search on medieval centuries for seven categories (such as religious, economic, etc…) and many sub-categories of sounds (such as street entertainers, church bells, and public political oratory) in London noted in a wide variety of literary and historical sources.
The Merchant Fleet of Late Medieval and Tudor England, 1400–1580. A searchable database of c. 50,000 ship voyages to and from over 400 English, Welsh, and Channel Islands ports, c.1400-c.1580, compiled from customs accounts, navy payrolls, and national ship surveys. The search form allows users to choose specific ports (such as London or other Thames ports) and years; the results usually list the ship’s name, homeport, master, and voyage date, and sometimes additional data on the shipowner, tonnage, size of the crew, and destination. Includes interactive maps of the ports and routes.
The London Medieval Murder Map allows users to find and locate the site of murders as reported in the coroners’ rolls of London, which survive for nine years in the early fourteenth century. Eight of these are published in Calendar of the Coroners Rolls of the City of London A.D. 1300-1378, ed. R. R. Sharpe (1913; a ninth in the LMA (for 1315-16) is also included in the dataset. For an explanation of the project methodology, see the video of the project launch. There are two maps: the Braun and Hohenberg map of c. 1560 and the modern Historic Towns Trust map of London for c. 1270, which can be filtered by the gender of the victim, crime scene and location, year, and weapon used. Pop-ups showing details of each case are available when the cursor hovers over the crime location.
“Filthy Cities: Medieval London” narrated by Dan Snow. A BBC Two production, Season 1, Episode 1 (2016). Vivid recreations of the sanitation problems facing medieval London. On occasion over-hyped, but based on solid documentary evidence, and highly educational. The sequence showing how pigs were slaughtered is especially illuminating.
The Buildings of London Bridge by Dorian Gerhold. Urban Design Group lecture based on new research published in his London Bridge and its Houses, c.1209-1761, London Topographical Society (2019
Medieval London Bridge. A seven-minute nicely illustrated documentary on the building of the bridge and its development. N11 Productions (2019). Accessible introduction taken from secondary sources available up to c. 2018. Narration by an American whose pronunciation of some places is incorrect.
Gresham College Lecture Series: Freely available videos of illustrated lectures delivered by top-notch scholars on their own research. See especially the following.
- The Growth of London as a Port from Roman to Medieval Times by Gustav Milne (Dec. 2016) covers the archaeological evidence especially well (53 minutes)
- Protecting London—Digging up Old London by Gustav Milne (Oct. 2008). Explanation of how archaeology has been conducted in recent decades, especially in the wake of massive redevelopment of the city’s infrastructure (56 minutes)
- London in the Not-So-Dark Ages by Lyn Blackmore (Oct. 2014). Surveys our changing understanding of the location and activities of Middle Saxon London (Lundenwic) in light of recent archaeological research (50 minutes).
- The Archaeology of St Paul’s Cathedral by John Schofield (Oct 2014). What recent excavations have revealed about the medieval cathedral, destroyed in the Great Fire of 166 (48 minutes)
- Thomas Becket and London by Caroline Barron (Feb. 2020). The influence on London life up to the Reformation of a twelfth-century Londoner who rose to become the Archbishop of Canterbury, was murdered, later canonized, and considered the patron saint of London (56 minutes)
- Leprosia: The Lost Leper Hospitals of London by Carole Rawcliffe (March 2012). Explores the institutional provisions made for lepers and how they reveal changing ideas about the disease (47 minutes)
- Mass Burials in St Mary Spital. London by Don Walker (Oct. 2015). Discusses thousands of human skeletons found in a hospital cemetery, the majority of which were (unexpectedly) found to be from the mid 13th century, which could refer to a global catastrophic volcanic event (35 minutes).
- Henry V and London by Caroline Barron (Sept. 2015). The king’s ‘special’ relationship with the city and Londoners’ role in his victory at Agincourt during his short reign, 1413-22 (67 minutes) .
- “Envy of Kings: The Guildhall of London and the Power of the Medieval Corporation” by Simon Thurley (Nov. 2015). Explores the architecture of London Guildhall, civic ceremonies, and the architectural patronage by London mayors into the modern period (53 minutes)
- Houses and Shops of Medieval Merchants by Simon Thurley (2018). Part I “House, Shop and Wardrobe in London’s Merchant Community,” focuses on the 11th thru 14th century, Part II covers “London Merchants and Their Residences,” in the 15th and 16th centuries.
Archaeology: Time Team episodes on London: in this long-running British TV show, a team of archaeological specialists try to uncover the story behind a particular site in three days. These are available in various formats.
- “Londinium, the Edge of Empire” Time Team Special 10 (2002): on Roman London
- “In Search of the Brigittine Abbey” Episode 108 (2004): find an enormous building of Syon Abbey, a large and wealthy late medieval house for nuns.
- “Called to the Bar” Episode 203 (2009): a 13th century palace at Lincoln’s Inn that belonged to the chancellor of Henry II (2009)
- “The Secrets of Westminster Abbey” Time Team Special 39 (2010)
- “Corridors of Power” Episode 210 (2010): uncovering a lost sacristy and the origins of Westminster Abbey.