Medieval mayhem at the museum

Thursday 30 April 2015

Visitors to the Museum of the University of St Andrews (MUSA) this Bank Holiday Monday will have the opportunity to travel back to the Middle Ages and experience the town in its early days.

The museum’s free Medieval Mayhem event will combine battle re-enactments, the latest in immersive virtual reality experiences, performances of historic music and demonstrations of how armour was made, to give visitors a unique insight into life in the Middle Ages.

St Andrews flourished during the Middle Ages, a period which is commonly dated from 500-1500 AD. The construction of the cathedral in the 1100s transformed the town into the centre of religious life in Scotland, attracting pilgrims from all over Europe. The town went on to become a hub of academic excellence after the foundation of the University in 1413, a legacy that is still with us today.

The event will bring together various departments at the University to enable visitors to get a unique flavour of life during this period.  The latest in immersive technology from the School of Computer Science will allow visitors to explore the town’s architecture as it was 600 years ago.  Students from the University’s Shire of Caer Caledon society will also don armour and use replica weapons to recreate the medieval military tournaments that were typical of demonstrations of a soldier’s skill in battle.

Event organiser Charlie Trzeciak, Curatorial Trainee, said: “There will be plenty for visitors to try for themselves, including calligraphy, the practice of artistic writing as seen on many of the manuscripts on display in the museum.  Children and adults will also be challenged to knock down a castle wall by building their own catapult.”

The Medieval Mayhem event aims to complement MUSA’s displays of important items from the University’s early years.  These include three silver ceremonial maces dating from the 1400s, considered by some to be the most important pieces of medieval European silver in existence.

Medieval Mayhem will be running from 11.00am-4.00pm on Monday 4th May. The event is free and there is no need to book. Battle re-enactments begin at 1pm. For more information, contact Charlie Trzeciak, Curatorial Trainee (Learning and Access) on 01334 461663.

Notes to news editors

For further details contact Charlie Trzeciak, Curatorial Trainee, Museum Collections Unit, University of St Andrews, Tel. 01334 461663

About MUSA:

MUSA (Museum of the University of St Andrews) is located at 7a The Scores and tells the story of Scotland’s first University from its foundation in around 1411 until the present day.  Visitors can also encounter some notable figures from the University’s history, discover some unique and internationally important objects and artworks and experience stunning vistas over West Sands from the viewing terrace.  The museum is open Monday-Saturday 10am-5pm and from noon until 4pm on Sundays.

Further details can be found on the museum website:

Images are available.

Issued by the University of St Andrews Communications Office, contactable on 01334 462108 or [email protected].

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