WOMEN SCIENTISTS OF THE MIDDLE AGES

An excellent article recommended me by an old friend. It is well worth your read and it has superb gaming applications for female characters in Medieval and fantasy games. As well as for fiction writings. You can read the entire article by following the link.

Women Scientists of the Middle Ages & 1600s

Alana Merritt Mahaffey, M.L.A. Candidate

Mentors: Drs. Marck L. Beggs, Bill Gentry, and Gary Simmons

Until the women‟s movements of the 1800s and 1900s, the limitations set by society for women

in the West hardly evolved since the Middle Ages. It is well known that most women in the

Middle Ages were restricted in their roles as citizens, limited by social status, by economic

constraints, and by a well established and unquestioned sexism prevalent in church, politics, and

family. A woman was defined, especially during the Middle Ages, by how the men with whom

she associated defined her. These men were most often her husband or her father. As Christaine

Klapisch Zuber points out in Medieval Callings, “Men of the middle ages long conceived of „the

woman‟ as a category, but only late in the period did they distinguish variations in the behavior

expected of women by applying criteria such as professional activities to their model. Before she

was seen as a peasant, the lady of a castle, or a saint, ‘the woman’ was defined by her body, her

gender, and her relations with family groups. Wife, widow, or maid, her juridical persona and

the ethic by which she lived in her daily life were portrayed in relation to a man or group of man” (285).

By this standard, the average Medieval woman had as much chance of acquiring independent

wealth, receiving a well rounded education, or making significant contributions to society as her

husband‟s cattle. Therefore, it is all the more remarkable that history yields to us several

outstanding women of the Middle Ages and 1600s whose accomplishments in the fields of

science and writing are still recognized today as valid and significant.

The status of the woman living in the Middle Ages broadened only by necessity. Many men

needed the help of their wives to sustain the family, and so men began bringing their wives into

the same trade guilds of which the men were already members. Women in these guilds were

expected to learn their husbands‟ trades and, in many cases, were given “masters status” in these

trades. (Gies 180). In the event of her husband‟s death, the widow was able to take an apprentice

herself. The natural evolution of allowing wives into guilds was the emergence of all female

guilds, which usually catered to women in the tapestry and candle trades…

 

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About Jack

BRIEF BIO: Jack Gunter is a writer of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and songs. He is the co-owner of Open Door Communications, a copywriter, an inventor, and a former broker and private investigator. He is a naturalist and an amateur scientist and cryptologist. He likes to compose music and to design and play games and puzzles of all types. He homeschooled his children. He lives in the Upstate of South Carolina with his beautiful wife, talented two daughters, his old friend and Great Dane Sam, and his three Viking Cats.

Posted on September 7, 2014, in Archaeology, Character/Character Development, Commentary, Discovery, Fantasy, Game Design, History, Information, Media, Non-Fiction, Paper, Real World, Role Play, RPG, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Reblogged this on Wyrdwend and commented:

    Because articles such as this also have very useful applications for fiction writers/writings.

    Like

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