The Cross of Mathilde, a crux gemmata made for Mathilde, Abbess of Essen (973–1011), who is shown kneeling before the Virgin and Child in the enamel plaque. The figure of Christ is slightly later. Probably made in Cologne or Essen, the cross demonstrates several medieval techniques: cast figurative sculpture, filigree, enamelling, gem polishing and setting, and the reuse of Classical cameos and engraved gems.
A 14th century depiction of the 13th century German knight Hartmann von Aue, from the Codex Manesse.
A late Roman sculpture depicting the Tetrarchs, now in Venice, Italy
A Norman knight slaying Harold Godwinson (Bayeux tapestry, c. 1070). The rank of knight developed in the 12th century from the mounted warriors of the 10th and 11th centuries.
Barbarian kingdoms and tribes after the end of the Western Roman Empire
The battle between the Turks and Christian knights during the Ottoman wars in Europe
A coin of the Ostrogothic leader Theoderic the Great, struck in Milan, Italy, c. AD 491–501
David I of Scotland knighting a squire
A mosaic showing Justinian with the bishop of Ravenna (Italy), bodyguards, and courtiers.
The miles Christianus allegory (mid-13th century), showing a knight armed with virtues and facing the vices in mortal combat. The parts of his armour are identified with Christian virtues, thus correlating essential military equipment with the religious values of chivalry: 
The helmet is spes futuri gaudii (hope of future bliss), the shield (here the shield of the Trinity) is fides (faith), the armour is caritas (charity), the lance is perseverantia (perseverance), the sword is verbum Dei (the word of God), the banner is regni celestis desiderium (desire for the kingdom of heaven), the horse is bona voluntas (good will), the saddle is Christiana religio (Christian religion), the saddlecloth is humilitas (humility), the reins are discretio (discretion), the spurs are disciplina (discipline), the stirrups are propositum boni operis (proposition of good work), and the horse's four hooves are delectatio, consensus, bonum opus, consuetudo (delight, consent, good work, and exercise).
Reconstruction of an early medieval peasant village in Bavaria
Tournament from the Codex Manesse, depicting the mêlée
An 11th-century illustration of Gregory the Great dictating to a secretary
Elements of a harness of the late style of Gothic plate armour that was a popular style in the mid 15th to early 16th century (depiction made in the 18th century)
Map showing growth of Frankish power from 481 to 814
Page from King René's Tournament Book (BnF Ms Fr 2695)
Charlemagne's palace chapel at Aachen, completed in 805
The Battle of Pavia in 1525. Landsknecht mercenaries with arquebus.
10th-century Ottonian ivory plaque depicting Christ receiving a church from Otto I
Fortified house – a family seat of a knight (Schloss Hart by the Harter Graben near Kindberg, Austria)
A page from the Book of Kells, an illuminated manuscript created in the British Isles in the late 8th or early 9th century
The Battle of Grunwald between Poland-Lithuania and the Teutonic Knights in 1410
Medieval French manuscript illustration of the three classes of medieval society: those who prayed (the clergy) those who fought (the knights), and those who worked (the peasantry). The relationship between these classes was governed by feudalism and manorialism. (Li Livres dou Sante, 13th century)
Pippo Spano, the member of the Order of the Dragon
13th-century illustration of a Jew (in pointed Jewish hat) and the Christian Petrus Alphonsi debating
The English fighting the French knights at the Battle of Crécy in 1346
Europe and the Mediterranean Sea in 1190
Miniature from Jean Froissart Chronicles depicting the Battle of Montiel (Castilian Civil War, in the Hundred Years' War)
The Bayeux Tapestry (detail) showing William the Conqueror (centre), his half-brothers Robert, Count of Mortain (right) and Odo, Bishop of Bayeux in the Duchy of Normandy (left)
A modern artistic rendition of a chevalière of the Late Middle Ages.
Krak des Chevaliers was built during the Crusades for the Knights Hospitallers.
A battle of the Reconquista from the Cantigas de Santa Maria
A medieval scholar making precise measurements in a 14th-century manuscript illustration
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Portrait of Cardinal Hugh of Saint-Cher by Tommaso da Modena, 1352, the first known depiction of spectacles
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The Romanesque Church of Maria Laach, Germany
The Gothic interior of Laon Cathedral, France
Francis of Assisi, depicted by Bonaventura Berlinghieri in 1235, founded the Franciscan Order.
Sénanque Abbey, Gordes, France
Execution of some of the ringleaders of the jacquerie, from a 14th-century manuscript of the Chroniques de France ou de St Denis
Map of Europe in 1360
Joan of Arc in a 15th-century depiction
Guy of Boulogne crowning Pope Gregory XI in a 15th-century miniature from Froissart's Chroniques
Clerics studying astronomy and geometry, French, early 15th century
Agricultural calendar, c. 1470, from a manuscript of Pietro de Crescenzi
February scene from the 15th-century illuminated manuscript Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry
Medieval illustration of the spherical Earth in a 14th-century copy of L'Image du monde

Knighthood in the Middle Ages was closely linked with horsemanship (and especially the joust) from its origins in the 12th century until its final flowering as a fashion among the high nobility in the Duchy of Burgundy in the 15th century.

- Knight

Manorialism, the organisation of peasants into villages that owed rent and labour services to the nobles, and feudalism, the political structure whereby knights and lower-status nobles owed military service to their overlords in return for the right to rent from lands and manors, were two of the ways society was organised in the High Middle Ages.

- Middle Ages
The Cross of Mathilde, a crux gemmata made for Mathilde, Abbess of Essen (973–1011), who is shown kneeling before the Virgin and Child in the enamel plaque. The figure of Christ is slightly later. Probably made in Cologne or Essen, the cross demonstrates several medieval techniques: cast figurative sculpture, filigree, enamelling, gem polishing and setting, and the reuse of Classical cameos and engraved gems.

6 related topics

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A Seal of the Knights Templar

Knights Templar

Catholic military order, one of the most wealthy and popular of the Western Christian military orders.

Catholic military order, one of the most wealthy and popular of the Western Christian military orders.

A Seal of the Knights Templar
Flag used by the Templars in battle.
The first headquarters of the Knights Templar, on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The Crusaders called it "the Temple of Solomon" and from this location derived their name of Templar.
Battle of Hattin in 1187, the turning point leading to the Third Crusade. From a copy of the Passages d’outremer, c.1490.
Convent of Christ Castle in Tomar, Portugal. Built in 1160 as a stronghold for the Knights Templar, it became the headquarters of the renamed Order of Christ. In 1983, it was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Templars being burned at the stake.
Templar chapel from the 12th century in Metz, France. Once part of the Templar commandery of Metz, the oldest Templar institution of the Holy Roman Empire.
Templar building at Saint Martin des Champs, France
Representation of a Knight Templar (Ten Duinen Abbey museum, 2010 photograph)
Depiction of two Templars seated on a horse (emphasising poverty), with Beauséant, the "sacred banner" (or gonfanon) of the Templars, argent a chief sable (Matthew Paris, c. 1250).
Temple Church, London. As the chapel of the New Temple in London, it was the location for Templar initiation ceremonies. In modern times it is the parish church of the Middle and Inner Temples, two of the Inns of Court, and a popular tourist attraction.

They were founded in 1119, headquartered on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, and existed for nearly two centuries during the Middle Ages.

In 1119, the French knight Hugues de Payens approached King Baldwin II of Jerusalem and Warmund, Patriarch of Jerusalem, and proposed creating a monastic order for the protection of these pilgrims.

Coat of arms of the order

Teutonic Order

Catholic religious order founded as a military order c. 1190 in Acre, Kingdom of Jerusalem.

Catholic religious order founded as a military order c. 1190 in Acre, Kingdom of Jerusalem.

Coat of arms of the order
Extent of the Teutonic Order in 1300.
The coat of arms in the style of the 14th century
Teutonic & Livonian Orders in 1422
Reliquary made in Elbing in 1388 for Teutonic komtur Thiele von Lorich, military trophy of Polish king Wladislaus in 1410.
Hermann von Salza, the fourth Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights (1209–1239)
Tannhäuser in the habit of the Teutonic Knights, from the Codex Manesse
Frederick II allows the order to invade Prussia, by P. Janssen
Map of the Teutonic state in 1260
Ruins of the Teutonic Order's castle in Paide, Estonia
Pomerelia (Pommerellen) while part of the monastic state of the Teutonic Knights
Map of the Teutonic state in 1410
Battle of Grunwald
Map of the Teutonic state in 1466
Castle of the Teutonic Order in Bad Mergentheim
A German National People's Party poster from 1920 showing a Teutonic knight being attacked by Poles and socialists. The caption reads "Rescue the East".
14th-century brass stamp with the shield insignia.
In the 16th century, officers of the order would quarter their family arms with the order's arms.<ref>In this example (dated 1594), Hugo Dietrich von Hohenlandenberg, commander of the bailiwick of Swabia-Alsace-Burgundy, shows his Landenberg family arms quartered with the order's black cross.</ref>
Example of the Deutschmeisterwappen on the gate of the Bad Mergentheim residence
Coat of arms of Prince Charles Alexander of Lorraine, Grand Master from 1761 to 1780.
Modern (20th century) medal
Procession in honour of Saint Liborius of Le Mans with Knights of the Holy Sepulchre together with Teutonic Knights in Paderborn, Germany.

Its members have commonly been known as the Teutonic Knights, having a small voluntary and mercenary military membership, serving as a crusading military order for the protection of Christians in the Holy Land and the Baltics during the Middle Ages.

Purely religious since 1810, the Teutonic Order still confers limited honorary knighthoods.

Indications of presence of military orders associated with the Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Holy Land during the Crusades (in German).

Military order (religious society)

Indications of presence of military orders associated with the Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Holy Land during the Crusades (in German).
Reconquista of the main towns (per year) (in Spanish).
Extent of the Teutonic Order in 1410.
The Hospitallers in the 13th century
Map of the branches of the Teutonic Order in Europe around 1300. Shaded area is sovereign territory, Grand Master HQ in Venice is highlighted)

A military order (militaris ordo) is a Christian religious society of knights.

They arose in the Middle Ages in association with the Crusades, both in the Holy Land and in the Iberian peninsula; their members being dedicated to the protection of pilgrims and the defence of the Crusader states.

Konrad von Limpurg as a knight being armed by his lady in the Codex Manesse (early 14th century)

Chivalry

Informal and varying code of conduct developed between 1170 and 1220.

Informal and varying code of conduct developed between 1170 and 1220.

Konrad von Limpurg as a knight being armed by his lady in the Codex Manesse (early 14th century)
God Speed by English artist Edmund Leighton, 1900: depicting an armoured knight departing for war and leaving his beloved
Reconstruction of a Roman cavalryman (eques)
Knights of Christ by Jan van Eyck
Depiction of chivalric ideals in Romanticism (Stitching the Standard by Edmund Blair Leighton: the lady prepares for a knight to go to war)

It was associated with the medieval Christian institution of knighthood; knights' and gentlemen's behaviours were governed by chivalrous social codes.

Bayeux Tapestry depicting the Battle of Hastings during the Norman Conquest

High Middle Ages

The period of European history that lasted from around AD 1000 to the 1300s.

The period of European history that lasted from around AD 1000 to the 1300s.

Bayeux Tapestry depicting the Battle of Hastings during the Norman Conquest
Miniature representing the delivery of the fortress of Uclés to the Master of Order of Santiago in 1174
France in the 12th century. The Angevin Empire held the red, pink and orange territories.
King Saint Stephen I of Hungary.
Poland under the rule of Duke Mieszko I between c. 960 - 992
The Pontic steppes, c. 1015
After the successful siege of Jerusalem in 1099, Godfrey of Bouillon, leader of the First Crusade, became the first ruler of the Kingdom of Jerusalem.
Cathars being expelled from Carcassonne in 1209
A map of medieval universities and major monasteries with library in 1250
Detail of a portrait of Hugh de Provence (wearing spectacles), painted by Tommaso da Modena in 1352
Ships of the world in 1460, according to the Fra Mauro map.
Fresco from the Boyana Church depicting Emperor Constantine Tikh Asen. The murals are among the finest achievements of the Bulgarian culture in the 13th century.
Interior of Nôtre Dame de Paris
John the Apostle and Marcion of Sinope in an Italian illuminated manuscript, painting on vellum, 11th century
Musicians playing the Spanish vihuela, one with a bow, the other plucked by hand, in the Cantigas de Santa Maria of Alfonso X of Castile, 13th century
Men playing the organistrum, from the Ourense Cathedral, Spain, 12th century
The cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris, whose construction began in 1163, is one of the finer examples of the High Middle Ages architecture

The High Middle Ages were preceded by the Early Middle Ages and were followed by the Late Middle Ages, which ended around AD 1500 (by historiographical convention).

Household heavy cavalry (knights) became common in the 11th century across Europe, and tournaments were invented.

A modern working stirrup on an endurance riding saddle

Stirrup

Light frame or ring that holds the foot of a rider, attached to the saddle by a strap, often called a stirrup leather.

Light frame or ring that holds the foot of a rider, attached to the saddle by a strap, often called a stirrup leather.

A modern working stirrup on an endurance riding saddle
Depiction of a Kushan divinity using an early platform-style stirrup, circa AD 150. British Museum.
Stirrup from the Baekje (18 BC – 660 AD) kingdom of Korea
Haniwa horse statuette, complete with saddle and stirrups, 6th century, Kofun period, Japan.
Roman emperor Basil I the Macedonian and his son Leo on horses with stirrups. (From the Madrid Skylitzes, Biblioteca Nacional de España, Madrid).
10th century stirrup found in England
Modern fillis stirrups
Han dynasty mounting stirrup.
Han mounting stirrup
A funerary figurine with a mounting stirrup, dated AD 302, unearthed near Changsha.
Horse figurine with stirrup, Western Jin
The earliest extant double stirrup, from the tomb of Feng Sufu, a Han Chinese nobleman from the Northern Yan dynasty, 415 AD. Discovered in Beipiao, Liaoning.
Iron stirrups, Gaya confederacy

The use of paired stirrups is credited to the Chinese Jin Dynasty and came to Europe during the Middle Ages.

Among other advantages, stirrups provided greater balance and support to the rider, which allowed the knight to use a sword more efficiently without falling, especially against infantry adversaries.