Using This Resource

This resource is aligned to the Australian Curriculum: History for Year 8 students. It adopts an inquiry learning approach that develops students’ skills in investigating the Medieval Europe and the early modern world sub-strand.  

This module predominantly covers a period spanning from the fall of the Roman Empire in western Europe in 476 CE through to approximately 1650. Within this timeframe, several movements occurred, including the Renaissance and the beginning of the Enlightenment. While this module will reference these movements, the terms “Middle Ages” and “Medieval” are used interchangeably to describe the era of European history being covered. This module does not use the term “Dark Ages” interchangeably. Further information about the term “Dark Ages” is addressed in theme two: “Bound to Service”.

The National Library of Australia’s collection of Medieval and Renaissance Treasures

The National Library of Australia’s collection of medieval and renaissance manuscripts comprises more than 6000 individual folios in 250 items and 12 bound volumes, dispersed across several collections. The bulk were acquired from two sources: ten volumes from the library of the 13th Baron Clifford of Chudleigh, and a large group of legal documents and fragments from manuscripts of theological, musico-liturgical and literary works from Sir Rex Nan Kivell, collected for his Calligraphy Collection.

This module draws on these wide-ranging collections. Selected works are used and examined to illustrate the experiences of people living in Europe during the Medieval period.

Through the generous support of donors, the National Library of Australia has been able to digitise a significant amount of this material. The digitised works can be browsed using the links below: