Databases of the week - Women in the Middle Ages: letters, lives, legacy

October 29, 2019
Katharine A Keller

The study of art history involves research in many different subject areas. In the case of someone studying depictions of women in medieval art, databases covering Religious Studies, Medieval Studies, History, Feminist Studies, and Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Studies such as the following provide a wealth of information, in addition to images and access to primary sources, some with translations.


    • Epistolae medieval women's latin letters:  " ... a collection of letters to and from women in the Middle Ages, from the 4th to the 13th century. The letters, written in Latin, appear under the names of the women involved, with English translations and, where possible, biographical sketches of the women and some description of the subject matter or the historic context of the letter." -- Epistolae 


    • Monastic Matrix: a scholarly resource for the study of women's religious communities from 400 to 1600 CE. "Matrix is an ongoing collaborative effort by an international group of scholars of medieval history, religion, history of art, archaeology ... and other disciplines, as well as librarians and experts in computer technology ... to document the participation of Christian women in the religion and society of medieval Europe. In particular ... to collect and make available all existing data about all professional Christian women in Europe between 400 and 1600 C.E. ... the basis of Matrix is the Monasticon, a repertory of profiles of religious women's communities ... Matrix also includes a Vitae, which contains entries on individual men and women associated with the communities in the Monasticon; a Cartularium of primary source documents; a Bibliographia of published and unpublished bibliographies and names; a Vocabularium; an archive of articles, the Commentaria; and a visual library, the Figurae"--Matrix.


    • Feminae: medieval women and gender indexIndexes journal articles, book reviews, and essays about women, sexuality and gender in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, from 450 C.E. to 1500 C.E., with citations for Russia extended to 1613. -- Feminae