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Mrs. Boarman
posted 01-18-2002 12:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mrs. Boarman   Click Here to Email Mrs. Boarman     Edit/Delete Message
My students are writing a school newspaper. The school mascot is a knight. They want to know if knights had newspapers. If so, what was a newspaper called? If news was only spread only by word of mouth, was there a word for news?

Erik Schmidt
Senior Member
posted 01-18-2002 07:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Erik Schmidt   Click Here to Email Erik Schmidt     Edit/Delete Message
For much of the middle ages there was not even such a thing as paper.
The written word was generally confined to bibles and other important texts which were commissioned by the church, wealthy lords or the monarch. They were written on very thin animal skins by highly skilled scribes, very often being monks.
News for the most part was word of mouth, unless you were wealthy and could afford to send information by written word, which still required a courier. It was often important for royals and nobles(knights) to write down commands and the like so that their seal could be placed on the document to authenticate the information.

The finding of graffiti made by soldiers dating from the late middle ages shows that literacy was not restricted to the upper classes, although in the early middle ages literacy was low.

There would most certainly have been a words for news, and would certainly, among the ruling classes, have been french and among the pesantry have been in their local language.


Senior Member
posted 01-21-2002 08:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Merlin   Click Here to Email Merlin     Edit/Delete Message
If you can't print, you can't fabricate a newspaper. Letter-printing in Europe was invented by Johann Gutenberg (Ý 1468) in Strasbourg, France. His masterpiece was the first print of the bible, which took him six years for the first edition.

As Erik already said, the «paper» of the middle ages in Europe were very thin animal-skins, treated with oil. These were called parchment (in latin «pergamentum» after the ancient city of Pergamon) and so precious, that one piece of parchment was often used several times – the old letters were scrached off with a sharp knife, so that the parchment could be used to write another text on it.

Written news of the 5th to the 15th century survived in form of chronicles, annals, official documents and letters, all written on parchment.The word most certainly used for news was «novitas», which is latin - the language of the church and almost all medieval documents until the late 13th century.


Senior Member
posted 01-21-2002 02:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for duncan   Click Here to Email duncan     Edit/Delete Message
Paper is easily made from many sources and can be produced at home today with little or no trouble.

1. Chinese paper makers captured in battles with the Saracens (moors) in Russian Turkestan were urged to continue their art and the paper industry was established in Damascus in A.D. 795 and the first paper mill in Spain was built by them.

2. Paper making in France was began in A.D.1189 and spread thought out the trade zones.

3. In Germany about A.D. 1380

4. England prides them selfs on quality paper made on or earlier then A.D.1330 which at that time became plentiful.

posted 02-25-2002 02:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for wkngforjesus   Click Here to Email wkngforjesus     Edit/Delete Message
I 'am Alyssa I'am 9 years old in 4th grade.And I'am doing a unit study on the renaissance.If you have aol go to "kids only".Then go to homework help type in med-
evil newspaper.It should hep you.But most people could not read so very few people would get the newspaper.


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