Medieval History

(Prof. Dr. Jörg Rogge)

Warfare as a Ruler’s Function in Latin Europe of the High and Late Middle Ages

This PhD thesis subject is not about the practice of warfare in detail, but about the connection between the legitimacy of rulership and military expansion. Thus, warfare should be approached systematically as an essential ruler's function with regard to its importance for securing or weakening rulers (England and the Empire around 1100, 1300 and potentially 1500).


Fighters on the Battlefield, Fighters in the Texts

This subject addresses the fundamental question of the efficiency of the transmission of Medieval texts. Warriors are accessible to research only in the form in which they are recounted in the texts. Therefore, this PhD thesis will, with consideration for the possibilities of narratological analysis, explore the narrative patterns and schemas used in the textual construction of men as warriors in western Europe.


For the Love of the Ruler and for One’s Honour: Speeches Before Battles in the British Isles, France and the Roman-German Empire (and Byzantium) in the Late Middle Ages

This PhD thesis will engage with an aspect of martial ritual that has not yet been systematically explored. Based on a collection of selected Late Medieval battles orations in the British Isles, France and the Roman-German Empire, this ritual will be examined in various ways, for example: a) by subject matter; b) by possible cultural differences; c) by development over time; d) by the dependence of the content of these speeches on the author; and e) by their actual performance. Byzantine battle orations as reported by Constantine VII, Theophylact Simocatta, Nicetas Choniates and John Kantakouzenos are also to be used comparatively.