Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Applying Class to Vacation: Medieval Studies in Pittsburgh

Recently I traveled to Pittsburgh over our October break to check out Carnegie Mellon University for their graduate student program. I'm debating on my options for post-graduation (WHAT NO!) and this was one of the first steps.

While I was there, I went to visit the Carnegie Mellon Museum of Art and Natural History. I can tell you that I was very impressed and could have spent hours (in fact I was there for six hours) looking at all the exhibits that were there. I'm taking this class called Castles, Cathedrals, and Cities for my Medieval Studies minor and little did I expect to see what I learned in class apply to what I had been visiting for enjoyment. 

One of the coolest things that I got to see where a bunch of portals that were cast from churches in Europe. In my Castles, Cathedrals, and Cities class we had been talking about the importance of these portals, tympanums and lintels (directly above the doorway) of cathedrals in the Middle Ages. I was awe-stuck by the sheer size of the doors and just sat to look at all the different pieces that pulled my eye. 
A cast of the Bordeaux Cathedral Portal
We also have been talking about the different kinds of armor available during the time, how it's made, who needed it, things like that. Being able to walk around in armor, ride a horse, get back up after being pushed to the ground is something that has to be taken into consideration when it is made. There are a bunch of different techniques and decorations that can be used in creating armor. 
Armor from the 16th century, Austria
Overall my trip to Pittsburgh was very informative and enabled me to learn lot. I am very glad to be back at SMC because there is no place like it on earth. 

Hope this gave you a little education on what it's like to be a Medieval Studies minor! Feel free to ask me any questions about it.

ALSO! Prospectives: check out the Knight Chat tomorrow at 7:30! Click here to sign up!
Katelyn :)