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The English Mediaeval House
by Margaret E. Wood

Hardback, 1994, 448pages, ex-lib in good condition

At a time when fresh discoveries are constantly being made, mediaeval archeology has come into its own. From the grandest hall to the lowest shelter, Margaret Wood here records the results of her own and other workers' meticulous research, and presents a fascinating study of the evolution of the English house.

The period covered is from the Norman Conquest to 1540. The scope of entertaining, the status of various members of the household, national and local politics, the family's relations with its neighbours, its living standards, taste in decorations and recreations, all influenced the size and construction of houses. Weathered by time and by history, some of these homes still stands. Others, built of more flimsy materials or, for some reason, subjects of attack, have long vanished, but archaeological evidence has allowed their form and appearane to be deduced in detail.

After an introductory summary of the work on excavation and recording, and a chapter on the main types of mediaeval house, the author devotes a separate chapter to each architectural feature. Sixty pages of beautiful and instructive photographs include many taken by the author in the course of excavations and research. There are also 150 plans, diagrams and drawings, enhancing a book that richly deserves its position as a definitive work on the subject.

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