Middle Ages Poultry question

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by Silvester, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. Silvester

    Silvester Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm looking for some guidance on digging up information concerning poultry during the middle ages in Europe.

    I'd like to do some presentations about which breeds were common (or which modern breeds are most similar), breeding techniques, coop design and construction, travel hutch design and construction and other related topics concerning poultry in Europe at various times between 600ad and 1600ad.

    Unfortunately Google hasn't been very helpful so far and I'm at a bit of a road block that I'm not sure how to get around.


    Someone please direct me toward web sources and/or inexpensive scholarly sources on any of these topics?
     
  2. boskelli1571

    boskelli1571 Overrun With Chickens

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    Try googling medieval chicken breeds - I came up with a few possible hits for you, [​IMG]
     
  3. Silvester

    Silvester Out Of The Brooder

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    That was my second or third search combination and it didn't seem that fruitful to me, but I'll check again and follow more of the links to see what I missed.

    Thanks
     
  4. chickwhispers

    chickwhispers A French Hen

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    Did you try "poultry in the middle ages" on google. That had many pages come up. Good luck to you! Sound like a very interesting search!
     
  5. Silvester

    Silvester Out Of The Brooder

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    I had previously tried similar combinations with limited results.


    It's easy(ish) to find medieval recipes for chicken and duck, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of info on how they were raised or transported. From my experience with the Society for Creative Anachronism I have seen similar lack of printed information in other areas... Until you get into the Renaissance and the introduction of the printing press, books were far more expensive and far less likely to contain the more frivolous details of life (like how a peasant would carry a live chicken from one town to the next).

    It looks like chickens were mostly left to free range during the day except during winter, ducks apparently were far easier to trap as needed than to raise as livestock, but swans, geese and peacocks were often kept domesticated.

    I have found some fantastic Renaissance era paintings that show what appear to be wicker cages; and there are some later paintings showing similar cages into the 1700's.
    http://www.artsunlight.com/artist-N...r/N-B0017-009-market-scene-auf-dem-markt.html
    http://www.artsunlight.com/artist-N...kelaer/N-B0017-015-the-four-elements-air.html
    http://bjws.blogspot.com/2013/10/sharing-harvest-1600s-food-marketing.html
    http://www.britishmuseum.org/resear...spx?assetId=1009944&objectId=3371797&partId=1

    Most of the images prior to the 1400's are more simplistic and thus show less useful detail.
    http://corsair.themorgan.org/cgi-bin/Pwebrecon.cgi?BBID=260122

    Chickens were actually kinda common in medieval and renaissance art: http://www.larsdatter.com/chickens.htm


    From what I have read so far, the "breeds" were sort of established and refined during the Victorian era by the English gentry as a past time - a bit like "show" cats, they were doing selective breeding to promote specific idealic features (color, size, plumage, etc..).

    I've found that a select few breeds are known to have been introduced to England by the Romans in the single digit centuries, but they have become rare.

    I have e-mails out to the minister of agriculture in England, Germany, Austria, France and the Netherlands as well as a few people here and there that had interesting articles or blog posts. A friend does fly fishing and he suggested I contact a couple of the companies that sell feather.


    With every new suggestion I find a little more. :)
     
  6. chickwhispers

    chickwhispers A French Hen

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    Wow. The links look interesting. Would it be ok if I joined your research? Although my time is limited it would be a great learning experience. I love chickens and learning. Thanks for all the links to !
     
  7. boskelli1571

    boskelli1571 Overrun With Chickens

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    Seems like you are making some progress there! In addition to the ag. minister in England, I would suggest that you e-mail some of the poultry clubs in England. They may have more information. I wish you luck,
     
  8. Silvester

    Silvester Out Of The Brooder

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    Chickwhispers,

    There's not much to really "join", it's really just an informal thing of me looking for information so I can write some amateur papers and recreate some stuff like coops and cages. You're entirely welcome to help and I'll share what I find.

    I think thru either the online library of the US library of Congress I found an article called "Chickens" from pages 496-499 in "The Cambridge World History of Food". I haven't read it yet, but it seems to have a quick outlining of the history of chickens.

    So far I have a bunch of articles that I have yet to read, mostly PDFs of websites I found thru Google searches:
    Gourmet Britain _ Food Encyclopedia _ Farm Animals in Medieval Times - http://www.gourmetbritain.com/food-encyclopedia/1808/farm-animals-in-medieval-times/
    How the Chicken Conquered the World _ History _ Smithsonian - http://www.smithsonianmag.com/ist/?next=/history/how-the-chicken-conquered-the-world-87583657/
    The care and feeding of Icelandic Chickens - http://mackhillfarm.com/2010/06/the-care-and-feeding-of-icelandic-chickens/
    5 Oldest Chicken Breeds - http://chickenbreedslist.com/5-Oldest-Chicken-Breeds.html
    English Historical Fiction Authors_ The Animals of Cottage and Castle_ Chick - http://englishhistoryauthors.blogspot.com/2014/01/the-animals-of-cottage-and-castle.html
    Article_ The Medieval Agricultural Year, by Rachel Hartman - http://strangehorizons.com/2001/20010212/agriculture.shtml
    livestock and animal husbandry in early medieval England - http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1040618213007192
    livestock and deadstock in early medieval Europe from the North Sea to the Baltic - sorry, no link in the PDF
    Farming in the Middle Ages - http://historylink101.com/lessons/farm-city/middle-ages.htm and http://www.thefinertimes.com/Middle-Ages/farming-in-the-middle-ages.html
    Chicken Husbandry in Late-Medieval Eastern England - sorry, no link in the PDF
    The Peasants_ Advances in Agricultural Technology, 800-1000 _ Lectures in Me - http://www.vlib.us/medieval/lectures/peasants.html
    Exploring the Animal Sciences in the Society for Creative Anachronism - Yaho - http://voices.yahoo.com/exploring-animal-sciences-society-creative-11424596.html?cat=37
    Working women in the Middle Ages - http://www.millersv.edu/~english/homepage/duncan/medfem/main.html
    the-importance-of-rabbit - http://www.humanities360.com/index.php/the-importance-of-rabbit- farming-in-medieval-britain-5076/
    The Importance of Rabbit Farming in Medieval Britain - http://www.humanities360.com/index....edieval-britain-5076/print/#comments_controls
    chicken breeds in Greece - sorry, no link in the PDF
    Ancient breeds - https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/639500/ancient-breeds
    History of Breeds - Incubation and Embryology - University of Illinois Extension - http://urbanext.illinois.edu/eggs/res10-breedhistory.html
    The Poultry Club of Great Britain - Poultry includes chickens, bantams, duck - http://www.poultryclub.org/poultry/history-of-poultry/
    History of the Chicken — Poultry — Penn State Extension - http://extension.psu.edu/animals/po...l-material/the-chicken/history-of-the-chicken
    Medieval Poultry _ Gloria Harchar - http://gloriaharchar.com/medieval-poultry/
    Poultry and his attitude in the Middle Ages - http://translate.google.com/transla...www.brandenburg1260.de/gefluegel.html&act=url
    False statements about life in the Middle Ages - Critique and Refutation by - http://www.traditioninaction.org/History/A_005_Myths1500s.shtml
    List of chicken breeds - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    mother earth breeds - http://www.motherearthnews.com/print.aspx?id=
    Order Your Chicken Rare_ Nearly Lost Breeds Make a Comeback - Modern Farmer - http://modernfarmer.com/2013/06/order-your-chicken-rare-nearly-lost-breeds-make-a-comeback/
    White Dorkings Chickens _ Yellow House Farm - http://www.yellowhousefarmnh.com/content/865
    A Treatise on the History and Management of Ornamental and Domestic Poultry - a downloaded OLD book
    genetic_hackle - a fly fishing article
    The origin and history of all breeds of poultry - https://archive.org/details/cu31924002975310
    Reliable poultry remedies, poultry-man's handbook of tried-and-proved remedies for the common diseases of poultry - www.arcliive.org/details/reliablepoultryrreli
    Medieval and Renaissance Baskets - http://larsdatter.com/baskets.htm
    Domestic Poultry - http://www.archive.org/details/domesticpoultrybOOsaun - link not working right
    Chicken art in the medieval period - http://www.larsdatter.com/chickens.htm
    Baskets from the S.C.A. Period - http://coblaith.net/Basketry/PeriodImages/default.html
    Tacuinum Sanitatis: Horticulture and Health in the Late Middle Ages - chronica_Historica
    and a paper that was submitted to the Journal of Achaeological Science by Thomas, Holmes and Morris that I received from Dr. Naomi Sykes at chickenco-op.net, it's mostly a dry research paper about bone finds in/around London.


    I have a lot of reading ahead of me... :-(

    And I'll have to teach myself basket weaving to recreate some of the cages from the paintings...

    Another great image from 1567: http://www.britishmuseum.org/resear...object_details.aspx?objectId=3371797&partId=1
     
  9. chickwhispers

    chickwhispers A French Hen

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    I will follow along in the learning and be a supporter of your efforts! That is quite a bit of reading. I learned some basket weaving years ago. Not sure if I could remember with out aid of a book. But I do remember it was fun and easy. The secret is keeping the material soaking wet while working with it. There are a few tools to aid in the weaving too. Nothing is too expensive though.
    I will read through all of your links and see what help I can be to you!
    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2014
  10. Silvester

    Silvester Out Of The Brooder

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    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014
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