A Podcast Exploring the Wit and Weirdness of Medieval Texts

Tag: A 15th-Cent Schoolbook

MDT Ep. 76: Concerning a Glimpse into 15th-Century School Life

Woodcut of a Tudor Grammar School
XJF265591 Schoolroom scene in Tudor times (litho) (b/w photo) by English School, (16th century); Private Collection; (add.info.: Schoolmaster seated holding a birch, usher (assistant) beating a boy; classroom is divided up in ages and stages of learning;); English, out of copyright

We return from our hiatus with an exploration of life in Tudor grammar school classroom, as described in a compilation of translation exercises composed for his students by a master of the Magdalen School, Oxford.

Today’s Text:

Image: Woodcut of a Tudor grammar school (via https://ninenet.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/xjf265591eng/schoolroom-scene-in-tudor-times-xjf265591-eng/).

MDT Episode 10: Concerning the Milk of Grammar

Heidelberg, Universitätsbibliothek, Cod. Pal. germ. 848, fol. 292vIn this episode we continue with Eberhard the German’s Laborintus and learn how a teacher acquires the knowledge of grammar, along with getting some practical advice about inspiring medieval schoolchildren.

This episode’s texts:

  • Eberhard the German. “The Laborintus of Eberhard: Rendered into English with Introduction and Notes.” Trans. Evelyn Carson. Diss. Cornell University, 1930.
  • Nelson, William, ed. A Fifteenth Century Schoolbook. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1956.


  • Orme, Nicholas. Medieval Schools: From Roman Britain to Renaissance England. New Haven: Yale UP, 2006.
  • Parsons, Ben. “Whipping Boys: Attitudes Towards Beating in Medieval Pedagogy.” Education Journal 191 (24 Feb. 2014): 10.
  • Thomas Aquinas. Commentary on Aristotle’s Metaphysics. Vol. 1. Trans. John P. Rowan. Chicago: Henry Regnery Company, 1961.

Image: Schoolmaster of Esslingen in Heidelberg, Universitätsbibliothek, Cod. Pal. germ. 848, fol. 292v, (first half 14th century) [via Erik Kwakkel]

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