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News from medieval Vienna.

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Man’s best friend

27.08.2017 by Rotschopf in Material culture

Since this spring, me and my husband, our mice, vampire crabs and mini shrimps have another room mate:

Now our little basset mix of course has to come with us on several reenactment events and her modern leash and harness have been a thorn in my eye. (more…)

When you imagine a medieval man or woman, what do you see? Foul teeth? Greasy hair? Dirty, bumpy skin? Hairy armpits and sweat stench?

Well, for some of them, this might have been true. For some people today, this is still true. But medieval sources prove, that it could be and has been different for large parts of the population. Medieval people know far more than we think today.

In this article I want to talk about aspects of (female) beauty routine and cosmetics, as we find them in medieval sources (mainly the Trotula).


Actually my plan for my 14th century hobby was to have a full citizen-costume ready by the start of the new season. Unfortunately that was more difficult than I thought due to delivery problems for the fabric. And since I really did not want to go another season with just one wearable dress, half eaten by moths, I needed a dress to change into during longer events. Again in a very cheap colour. In white.


A simple shirt / undergown

23.03.2017 by Rotschopf in Clothing

The last works of the winterseason are in progress. For our first event in April, I still needed a sleeveless undergown/shirt. I already had one from my medieval fair times, but it was much too short and made from cotton.


A hint more coloure, can I dare?

10.12.2016 by Rotschopf in Clothing

There are a few things in the reenactors life, that he or she wants to have immediately after seeing. Only you need to get past your own and your fellow reenactors doubts and see a little more evidence.


It is wintertime and from everywhere I geht recipes for Hypocras during this season. Hypocras is delicious and quickly goes to your head. But I have wanted to try another recipe for quite some time. Caudel or Cawdel.

This beverage seems to be a specifically english one and is the predecessor of Butterbeer. Yes, that’s right,  Butterbeer is a thing and even apart from the Warner Brothers Adventure Worlds of Harry Potter. Yet Butterbeer only appears in the early 16th century, which is why I’ll stick to older recipies.


Enough is enough! Throw your iron Toilet-paper-roll-burner (yes, that totally is a thing), your lamp oil covered torches and your stupid Visby lanterns out the window! This is not your allday Hollywood-dungeon, we are recreating the civilisation of late medieval times!

Here we will show you some of the numerous possibilities to light your medieval house, tent or road in a historical way.



Interpretation work is an enduring effort to question everything that is taken for granted in your modern life. One question we have been asking ourselves is, weither flower vases were common on the 14th century table.

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Let’s have a look at the sources….


Sheperd’s budget

29.09.2016 by Rotschopf in Textile work

Since I have a sheperd’s weapon now and a sheperd’s instrument, I thought, well then I can go full sheperdess! Although it is very likely, I will never be able to get to a sheep-herd any time soon, in case I do get the chance, I already have the equipment! Yay!



27.09.2016 by Rotschopf in Equipment, Reconstructions

Slinging has followed me for a while now since I discovered the pages of Ottonenzeit about the topic.

I was fascinated by this “simple” technique. Although a woman would probably not have practiced slinging in medieval times, I really wanted to try it for myself, even if it may not be presentable in my all-day impression.

You can see slingshots in original pictures of shepherds or in use during the hunt ( here, a model with a stick attatched and here and here) and of course in pictures of David and Goliath (here and here and here and there and here). But also in military context. There are two types, one using only strings with a pocket attatched and one using an additional staff or stick which serves as an extension of the arm. The techniques for using them vary. You can find more on slinging pages on the web.

Here is my first reconstruction attempt. I used a pocket made of leather as can be seen in the Schleswig leather finds. The leather in the finds had been cut several times to allow bulging of the leather depending on the size of he stone. As strings I used linnen threads which I simply braided and tucked into a loop and a knot on the ends.

So, I’ll go find some nice pebbles in the Danube river and see if I am any talented 🙂


Edit: Thanks a lot to Singa Lu for sending me his collection of original sources showing slingshots!!