Medieval or Middle Ages
The term "Middle Ages" "medieval" is just a direct Latin
translation, from medius (middle) and ævum
(age) traditionally refers to the period between antiquity and the Renaissance. The term sometimes
includes late antiquity, and
sometimes excludes it. In practice, the Middle Ages usually
stretch from around the fifth century C.E. (476 is a common date) through the
fourteenth or fifteenth century (1453, the fall of
Constantinople, is a common ending date; 1500 is another because
it sports two zeroes).
The spellings "mediæval" and "mediaeval" are predominantly
The term "Dark Ages," which was sometimes used to refer to the
entire medieval period, and sometimes just to the early Middle
Ages, has nearly fallen out of critical use.
The traditional canon of Medieval
English English literature includes the epic poem Beowulf, the anonymous
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and Chaucer's
From the Guide to Literary Terms by Jack Lynch.
Please send comments to Jack Lynch.
Note: This guide is still in the early stages of development.
Three question marks mean I have to write more on the subject. Bear with me.