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World History--Daily Life during the Middle Ages: Home

Assignment guide exploring daily life of various characters who lived during the Middle Ages.

What Was Daily Life Like During the Middle Ages?

Whether your life was difficult or not depended a great deal on your social and economic position in society.  People lived in many ways and in many different places.  The manorial system bound the nobility to the serfs.  A ‘middle class’ of merchants developed in the growing towns and cities.  Monks and nuns served the needs of their communities or lived lives of silent contemplation.

Assignment in brief


PROMPT: Was your life “better” or “worse” than your contemporaries?


ASSIGNMENT:  Create a journal of daily life during the period covered by Chapter 12.  Pick a character based on the pairings listed below.  Compare your life that of the opposite character and argue whether your life is “better” or “worse.”  Why is this the case? What evidence can you provide to support this claim?  Consider the questions listed below as you recreate a picture of Medieval life.


*Lord or Lady (nobility)

*Noble Lady or Serf Woman

*Lord or Serf Man

*Urban Housewife or Serf Woman

*Female Serf or Male Serf

*Nun or Serf, Lady, or Housewife



*What work do you do? What is your job? How do you do your job? What tools or expertise do you need?

*What is your daily schedule?

*What is your home like?

*What do you eat and drink?

*What do you wear?

*What do you see around you? What do you hear? What do you smell?

*How do you spend your leisure time?

CItation Help

Noodle Tools


Electronic resources


General reminders

1. All library resources used for this assignment are on reserve.

2. There will be a reserve cart located near the circulation desk in the library.

3. All students working on the assignment can and should help to build the reserve collection.

4. Items on reserve may be checked out overnight only (checked out at the end of the school day and returned before classes begin the next day).

5. Items may be placed on Hold using AccessIt:

a. Go to the Beatrice M. Haggerty Library Team. 

b. Click on the Library Collections channel.

c. Click on the link in the post or the Ursuline Library Catalog tab.

d. Click on the login prompt in the upper right corner and log in via SSO.

e. Search the catalog for the title you would like to place on Hold.

f. Click on the title.

g. Click on the "Make a Hold/Booking" button located on the right side of the pop-up.

h. You will be alerted via email when the item is available for check out.

Search terms

serf                           Middle Ages    

noble                        nobility         

servant                     vassal         

nun                           abbot        

cathedral                 clergy             

fief                          feudal system                    

monastery               apprentice                          

merchant                 Medieval 

manor                     peasant

abbess                    feudalism

guild                       cloister

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