Issue 110 – May 2017

Press “Rewind”, sit back, and enjoy a good read about Medieval Music in Renaissance Magazine’s Music Issue!

Bands, History, and More!

Ever wanted to know more about the bands you see and hear both live on stage and via our music players.  Learn history behind the Merry Wives of Windsor.  Go in depth with articles on popular groups Cantiga, Pictus, Saxon Moon, Tartanic, and Wine and Alchemy.  Chat with dulcimer player Vince Conway.

Then, once you’ve read up on current Medieval and Renaissance music, dive into the history to learn about Period Instruments, including a discussion of those found on the wreckage of the Mary Rose.  Of course, learning about the music wouldn’t be complete without a sampling of music creators such as the Women Musicians in Tudor England and the Wartburg Minstrels.

To round out your read, we’ve added in articles that will take you to exotic Budapest, show you an exhibit on Venice, give you some camping tips, a recipe to nosh on, and three bardic offerings to stimulate your brain.

Come join us as we dive into the past with Renaissance Magazine!

Issue 109 – Mar 2017

A magical moment as Renaissance Magazine returns, once again bringing the history of the medieval and Renaissance eras to your doorstep.

New Articles on “Old Stuff”!

Ever wonder how kids visiting medieval Sherwood Forest might have lived?  Your children can find out by visiting the Sherwood Forest Summer Camp.

Want to up your garb-game?  Read up on how to Dress Like a Lady in the 14th and 15th centuries and check out how to Make a Petticoat.  Are you a fighter?  Surprise everyone with your knowledge of the Knights! Exhibit at Worcester Museum or the history of Cloth Armor.

Of course, we’ve got information that will surprise your friends and make great dinner conversation over your Apple Cherry Hazelnut Crumble.  I’m sure they’ve heard of the Irish potato famine, but you can wow them with the history of how the Potato Came to France.  Or reference your current job to Medieval Guilds.

Find out about Mummers, read an interview with Candice Knight, and go On the Road with Chaste Treasure.

Combine all of this with items of interest, cartoons, music and book reviews, and you can see that Renaissance Magazine has returned!

Issue 108 – Jan 2017


Denise Goodson—Notorious Madam Red
Denise Goodson, a 52-year-old paralegal from Overland Park, Kansas, started performing at renaissance festivals when she was 17 years old. She immediately knew she was addicted to that quirky ambience that enables artists to … interact one-on-one with patrons. She became a ren performer after deciding to audition to be a street character at the Kansas City Renaissance Festival (KCRF) in 1981, and in 2015 completed her 35th season with that same show.

Diamonds Are Forever
Believed to possess magical powers, emissaries of good and bad fortune, used as pawns in intrigue, collateral in wars, gifts to sweeten proposed political marriages, and put to work industrially, they have come to surpass all precious stones in value. Yet for centuries, diamonds were scarce and less desirable to Western Europeans than more costly, accessible gems such as pearls.

Making Bulrush Chairs
Since the dawn of civilization, the very act of sitting in an elevated fashion off the ground raised us humans both physically and mentally from our brethren in the animal kingdom … Luckily for the work-worn majority whose weary bones demanded a modicum of comfort, Europe’s epic awakening from the Dark Ages ushered forth the Renaissance, and by the 15th century chairs with rush-woven seats were among countless other household objects that became more accessible to the common man.

Renaissance Faire Footwear
Finding footwear that looks renaissance-era appropriate while also offering the support and comfort of a modern-day shoe has always been a challenge for performers and patrons alike. Compared to the dresses, doublets, and capes on display at most faires and festivals, shoes tend to go unnoticed, which makes the task of finding the right shoe a somewhat ambiguous quest.

The Hard Life of a Strolling Player
The English word “stroll” came into use in the late 16th century. It comes from German “Strolchen,” “to roam as a vagrant”; and indeed the life of a traveling player was a stroll in name only. In 16th-century England actors were widely despised. Meeting one of his social “betters” along a narrow street, an actor was expected to step aside, fouling his shoes and hose in the gutter. A 1545 act of Parliament declared any unlicensed actor to be a vagabond, liable to be put in the stocks or even branded.

The Sin Eater: Pariah of the Middle Ages
Funeral rituals are as wide-ranging and complex throughout the world as the peoples performing them, and the Middle Ages had its own quirks when Death came knocking. In the old Celtic lands, especially Scotland, Wales and England, one of those rites performed in the country villages and more remote areas was the responsibility of the sin eater. The sin eater was called before burial of the deceased to absolve his sins so the dead might gain entrance into Heaven. The sin eater took the dead person’s lifetime of sins into himself, thus leaving the soul free of any stain.

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