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Faide
09-22-2009, 11:39 PM
Hello, it's me again! I did a quick forum search this time, but didn't find exactly what I needed.

Okay, I'd like to avoid yer olde stereotype inn. I have a couple of characters working at a guesthouse too. And I know a little bit about this, but far from enough.

Period: Late 1200s/early 1300s

Setting: A weird mix of England, Scotland and France

So, my questions are: how did inns/taverns function in cities? How many were there, generally? What kinds of work did you do? How about stables, with horses and such? What did they serve at inns? What kind of guests did you get? And how where the rooms? Did you get your own? Shared it with others? Especially if the workers lived at said inn too. How about general medieval city life? Who ruled in the city; guilds, mayors, who? Where did they sell things - at private shops, marketplaces, what? Horses, where there rules for them, or could you ride around everywhere? How about wells and garbage and such? And of course, brothels. Thanks for reminding me, Shakesbear!

Hm, yeah. I suddenly realized I had some questions. I'll stop right there. Any answers will be welcome.

blacbird
09-22-2009, 11:42 PM
You need to get to a library and do some research, it sounds like. I'd recommend this book, by Henri Pirenne:

http://www.librarything.com/work/97550

Also the work of historian Johan Huizinga could be of value.

caw

PeterL
09-22-2009, 11:54 PM
You should decide on a century and area, because things varied from place to place and over time. Earlier would be easier, because there was less variation from say 600 to 1100 CE, than from 1100 to 1400 CE. The cities were smaller and simpler before 1000 CE.

Henri Pirenne was a great historian, so that book probably would be worth reading.

Shakesbear
09-22-2009, 11:54 PM
Hello, it's me again! I did a quick forum search this time, but didn't find exactly what I needed.

Okay, I'd like to avoid yer olde stereotype inn. I have a couple of characters working at a guesthouse too. And I know a little bit about this, but far from enough.

So, my questions are: how did inns/taverns function in cities? How many were there, generally? What kinds of work did you do? How about stables, with horses and such? What did they serve at inns? What kind of guests did you get? And how where the rooms? Did you get your own? Shared it with others? Especially if the workers lived at said inn too. How about general medieval city life? Who ruled in the city; guilds, mayors, who? Where did they sell things - at private shops, marketplaces, what? Horses, where there rules for them, or could you ride around everywhere? How about wells and garbage and such?

Hm, yeah. I suddenly realized I had some questions. I'll stop right there. Any answers will be welcome.

You missed out brothels. Don't you want to know about them?

Location would help as different countries did things differently.

Faide
09-23-2009, 12:21 AM
You need to get to a library and do some research, it sounds like. I'd recommend this book, by Henri Pirenne:

http://www.librarything.com/work/97550

Also the work of historian Johan Huizinga could be of value.

caw

Heh, I do. Problem is, this is Norway. There's hardly any books about the Middle Ages here. I have some books, though, but they don't go into depth on cities. But thanks!

PeterL: Snap. I should've remembered. Late 1200s/early 1300s, a mix of France, England and Scotland *goes and edits her post*

Shakesbear: Whoops! Brothels! I knew I'd forgotten something xD Tell me all about them xP I'm editing my first post a bit now.

Thanks, guys!

PeterL
09-23-2009, 12:46 AM
Heh, I do. Problem is, this is Norway. There's hardly any books about the Middle Ages here. I have some books, though, but they don't go into depth on cities.

Unfortunately, there aren't many books that go into any depth of the life in ancient or medieval cities. Therre are a few books out with with titles like "Everyday life in a Medieval city", or something like that, it is not worth looking at. If there is a university nearby, you might see what they have in their library.


PeterL: Snap. I should've remembered. Late 1200s/early 1300s, a mix of France, England and Scotland *goes and edits her post*


The Hundred Years War was on, so travel in the Angevin part of what is now France was iffy. There weren't many inns except in the largest cities. The inns operated about the same way that they would have operated a hundred fifty years ago. The food would have been whatever the innkeeper's wife cooked. If you wanted anything else, you would have bought it and paid for it to be prepared. There might have been a few semi-private rooms, but most men would have slept in the common room on the benches. No one would have slept on the floor.

Remember that "travel" is from the French "travail" which means "work". Travel was difficult and unpleasant. The inns were part of the unpleasantness.

backslashbaby
09-23-2009, 01:01 AM
Cassoulet to eat! Mmmmm :D

blacbird
09-23-2009, 01:20 AM
Travel was difficult and unpleasant. The inns were part of the unpleasantness.

How little things have changed, other than "inns" being replaced by "airports". I myself have slept on the floor of an airport, three or four times that I can recall.

caw

waylander
09-23-2009, 01:39 AM
A lot of travellers stayed overnight in monasteries.

backslashbaby
09-23-2009, 01:46 AM
I've actually eaten at a type of medieval inn, with a certain name I can't remember dammit, in Toulouse, France. The names and the customs were in some literature about cassoulet I found. I can't remember anything except there were only about a dozen left, they had original recipe cassoulet, and travelers boarded their horses, too.

And it might have been Carcasonne [or both?]. Ugh.

That region is a good starting point if you have none, in any case. Lyon, Toulouse, Carcassonne. Very medieval and they keep up with what used to be done.

waylander
09-23-2009, 02:31 AM
I stayed here recently http://www.mermaidinn.com/index.html
It was rebuilt in 1420 after the French burned the town but the cellars date from 1156.
The town was pretty prosperous in those days so rich merchants and travellers would have stayed there.

pdr
09-23-2009, 10:55 AM
looking down in the Genre section at Historical Writing?

At the top of the Historical board, amongst the stickies, is Resources by Era. It's a large collection of resources, urls, books and DVDs. Spend time going from top to bottom, then look in the Mediaeval Section.

Ariella
09-24-2009, 01:54 AM
Some places to look:

J.J. Jusserand's English Wayfaring Life in the Middle Ages (http://books.google.ca/books?ei=vZW6SoAcpPzKBMGYtYIP&id=wxIbAAAAMAAJ&dq=%22english+wayfaring+life%22&q=taverns#search_anchor) is more than a century old, but it's a classic and covers a lot of that territory. Snippets of it are on Google books and second-hand copies can be found cheaply online.

Professor Martha Carlin wrote a great article on medieval fast food outlets (http://books.google.ca/books?id=yQ1lFaXBUbkC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA27#v=onepage&q=&f=false) that's available online.

There's also Ruth Mazo Karras' book Common Women: Prostitution and Sexuality in Medieval England (http://books.google.ca/books?id=9S_rO2TXRq4C&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_v2_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q=&f=false).