Disability & War in the Middle Ages
he idea of historic post-war trauma is not only difficult to prove but also difficult to research, especially in terms of day-to-day battlefield activity. Medieval post-battle records that mention changes in mental health or injury and recovery after battle allow scholars to better understand the treatment of individuals with battle trauma and those recovering from other battle injuries. Fighters were trained to aim their blows at the areas of the body not covered in metal, especially legs and the head. This left many fighters, even those who could afford a good helmet, with head injuries from concussions to actual penetrating wounds. And, while torture for ransomed gentlemen was frowned upon, evidence exists for the use of torture and imprisonment, which encouraged the rapid payment of ransom and destroyed the mental health of some victims. In 1306 for example, Nigel Coppedene killed his neighbor and was pardoned because of a mental illness following “his sufferings as a prisoner of war” (The National Archive, Kew, London, Public Record Office manuscripts: PRO C 260/16/m 5b; JUST 1/934/m 3). This paper will take a closer look at later medieval English cases of trauma following battle.
Une conférence de Wendy J. TURNER (Augusta University, USA) – Considering the Recovery after Trauma of Bellatores in Medieval England.
Christophe MASSON (F.R.S.-FNRS/ULiège)
Ninon DUBOURG (F.R.S.-FNRS/ULiège)