Welcome, Time Travelers, to 1354.
You’ve arrived in the year of my novella, Her Wounded Heart, which appears in the Bluestocking Belles’ box set Never too Late about a solitary widow, a landless knight, and a crumbling manor.
- Early in the year – Ibn Battuta returns from his travels at the command of Abu Inan Faris, sultan of Morocco, who appoints a scribe to write an account of the adventures.
- February 12 – The Treaty of Stralsund settles border disputes between the duchies of Mecklenburg and Pomerania.
- October 8 – Cola di Rienzo, self-proclaimed “tribune” of Rome, is killed by an angry mob.
- December 10 – The reign of John VI Kantakouzenos as Byzantine Emperor is ended, after John V Palaiologos retakes Constantinople and is restored as sole emperor.
- After 24 years of struggling for independence, since the Battle of Posada (1330), won against Hungarians by his father, Nicholas Alexander of Wallachia becomes vassal to Hungarian king Louis I.
- The Ottoman Turks capture the cities of Kallipolis and Didymoteicho from the Byzantine Empire.
- The Lao kingdom of Lan Xang is established by Fa Ngum.
- Sahab-ud-Din becomes Sultan of Kashmir.
- Assassins strike down Sultan Hassan, and his body is never returned.
Deaths of Note:
- Giovanni Visconti was the archbishop of Milan. He also fought against Florence and captured and held other cities. He died in 1354.
- Wu Zhen was a pater from Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province during the Yuan dynasty of China. He followed the Dong Yuan school of painting.
Wu Zhen, Fisherman, National Palace Museum
Wu Zhen, Hermit Fisherman on Lake Dongting.
Love and Romance
Back in the 1350s, weddings were slightly different from today. No wedding gowns, no once and done dresses. Green was the color of young love. The color of purity was blue. Both were popular choices with brides, who wore their best dresses. Back then, white was associated with mourning. White was never worn for a wedding.
The tradition of something blue started back then. The bride and groom would wear a band of blue ribbon. Every woman daily wore garters. At the end of the evening, when the couple departed for the bedchamber, guests would try to take the garter, believing it for good luck. If a man gave his beloved the bride’s garter, it was to assure her that he was faithful to her.
The betrothal in medieval times was nearly as binding as marriage itself. For nobles, you could be betrothed as early as seven years old but it wasn’t legal until the couple came of age. Likewise for nobles, grooms tended to be significantly older than their brides. The brides were typically thirteen, fourteen. Rarely, a noble woman would not marry until twenty-four.
You could not be married during Lent or Advent.
I’ve always been enthralled with the Middle Ages so I had a themed wedding. My dress had blue in it because it was the time period’s color for purity.
About Her Wounded Heart in Never Too Late:An injured knight trespassing on Mary Bennett’s land is a threat to the widow’s already frail refuge. Even so, she cannot turn away a man in need and tells him he has her husband’s leave to stay until Christmas.
Doran Ward wishes only to survive for one more day. However, as he begins to heal and to pay for his lodgings by fixing the rundown manor, the wounds to Mistress Bennett’s heart intrigue him.
Can two desperate souls find hope in time for Christmas?
Comment on all eight blogs in the tour and be entered to win a $25 gift voucher from Amazon and a print copy of Never Too Late!
You can get to all eight blogs via the time machine page on our Bluestocking Belle’s website once all tour stops are published. The previous stop is over at Sherry Ewing’s blog and the next stop is Jessica Cale’s!