Skip To Content
    Jun 12, 2012

    Insane Book About Life In The Middle Ages

    Life in the 12th century was short, brutal, and freakin' awesome! Between monster snails and Doctor Who villains, this 100% accurate illuminated manuscript is certainly illuminating.

    Monster Snail Attacking Knight

    Some quick background. Versions of the above image have been floating around Tumblr for days because it's hilarious. A quick reverse image search led me to the Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts.

    Searching for "monster snail" pulls up the Latin version of the Decretals of Gregory IX written sometime in the late 13th or early 14 century during the reign of Pope Gregory IX.

    So while this manuscript may be a collection of Catholic Church Law, for our intents and purposes it is a time travel tourist field guide.

    So! 20 things to do and see while visiting medieval Europe include:


    Man Putting Child Into Oven

    Do Not Visit Any Pub Or Restaurant Where You Cannot See The Kitchen.


    Woman Setting Windmill On Fire

    Indulge Your Inner Fire Bug By Igniting Local Windmills And One-Legged Steampunk Musicians.


    Geese Hanging Fox

    Watch Predator Become Prey When Geese Attack.


    Castle Flanked By Grotesques

    It Is Polite To Tip, But Not Stare At, These 100% Real Creature Performers That Really Existed In The 12th Century Lest They Surround Your Lodgings And Berate You With Off-Key Ballads.


    Grotesques Fighting Over Mermaid

    Don't Miss The Humorous Mermaid Fights Every Saturday. Silly Cat-Butt Man, Fish Aren't Weapons!


    Man Attacking Butterfly

    Butterflies Are A Danger To You And Your Loved Ones. Do Not Approach. Report All Suspicious Butterfly Activity To Your Local Knight.


    Seated Rabbit With Scroll In Mouth

    Heed The Sage Wisdom Of An Ancient Rabbit...


    Rabbit Beheading Man

    Or Don't And Suffer The Consequences!


    Nursing Woman On Stilts

    Local Customs May Appear Strange. Do Not Openly Mock Them...


    Three Skeletons

    Unless You Want Them To Sick Skeletal Plague Zombies On You.


    Man Riding Lion

    Lion Riding Is A Popular(?) Pastime But Amateurs Should Procede With Caution...


    Man Cutting Leg Off With Axe

    Because Modern Medicine Has Not Yet Been Invented And Unlike The Natives, You Do Not Bleed Sweet, Delicious Honey.


    Ducks Dragging Coffin Towards Rock

    Though If The Worst Should Happen, Be Sure To Request The Duck Funeral Procession.


    Naked Hermit On A Leash

    Stop By The Local Gift Shop And Pick Up Your Very Own Naked, Hairy Hermit.


    Grotesque Pursuing Man(?)

    Or Opt For A More Old-Fashioned Abduction.


    Man Leaving Building Carrying Door

    If A Pet Is Too Much Hassle, Thieving Doors From The Dreaded Giraffe King Is The Next Best Thing.


    Two Knights Fighting Over Possession Of A Hound

    But Whatever Souvenir You Opt For, Under No Circumstances Should You Engage In Mortal Combat Over The Possession Of A Dog.


    Angel And Devil Watched By Nun



    Man Being Massaged

    End Your Vacation With A Trip To The Massage Parlor. Happy Endings Extra.


    Man And Large Snail

    And Whatever You Do, Run The Hell Away From Monster Snails.

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form