Reference Books

Along the way, Staple has collected a few books to help with our research in the 14th century. I’ve listed them here so that people don’t need to find them for themselves. These sources are primarily about medieval England, as that’s Staple main focus for portrayal.

This list will be updated as I get the various book sources together.


Stepping through time – is one of the best references on shoes and patterns. It covers a broad archaeological area.

The Museum of London’s Shoes and Patterns is also an excellent resource and focuses on finds found in London.

Other excellent Museum of London books include:

Knives and Scabbards – Museum of london book, excellent resource

Medieval Household

Textiles and Clothing

Also in clothing is Fashion in the age of the black prince. It’s a pretty dry read, but one of the most informative sources of information about what they wore in 14th century England.


The Merchant of Prato – written by Iris Origo, it is a collection of the information from the letters from and to Francesco di Marco, who believed that you should write the letter three times and send it by three different couriers and expected the same in return.

He was somewhat of a nitpicking micromanager and so we have lots of small details that many other people didn’t think to write down.

Letters to Francesco Datini – Francesco and his wife lived about a day’s travel apart from each other, and this book, which has translations of her letters back to him, are full of little details about living on the farm and of her sending him food from the farm in Prato. She oversees his laundry being done, and so there are lists of clothing being sent back and forth.

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