Thursday, October 28, 2010

Medieval Geography

We're still in the 800s in history, but I just purchased what I hope will prove to be a very fun geography and history book — The Travels of Benjamin of Tudela.

Binyamin left northeast Spain in the late 1100s and traveled through Spain, Europe, and the Arabian peninsula. In his book, he describes the local customs of Jews and non-Jews in the cities he visits. He also did a census of Jewish populations in the areas he visited. It is considered a highly accurate account of daily life at the time, and he accomplished all of this while the Crusaders were committing horrible atrocities against the Jewish people. When we start it, it will be great fun to get a blank medieval map of the area and trace his travels. I'll patiently wait another 365 years, though. That should come sometime in January, so plenty of time to prepare! :)

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