|Term Paper Title
|# of Words
|# of Pages (250 words per page double spaced)
Minstrels, or traveling thespians, thrived throughout Europe in medieval
times. The term minstrel referred to a professional entertainer of any kind
from the 12th century to the 17th century. Minstrels were instrumentalist, but
were also often jugglers, acrobats, and storytellers. Although minstrels no
longer exist, they played an important role in medieval history and, at one time,
could be found, in one form or another, throughout the entire continent of
Different countries had different names for minstrels. In Germany, they
were called minnesingers. In France, they were known as troubadours and
joungleurs. The Scandinavian minstrels were called skalds. The Irish called
their minstrels bards, while the English minstrels were referred to as scops.
Minstrels were primarily singers and musicians. These wandering
performers were also story tellers, jugglers, clowns, and tumblers. Often
minstrels were an important part of prominent house holds providing
entertainment for the upper class of society. Those minstrels who were not part
of a noble's homestead, traveled from town to town providing entertainment not
only to noble classes but also to common village folk as well.
There were not many forms of entertainment, nor was there a means for
people to learn about news events. There was no television or radio in medieval
times. Even books were very scarce. Minstrels served to entertain the public.
They made up songs, stories, and repeated ballads and folk tales popular during
this time. Traveling from town to town minstrels were also a source of news.
This would share information with the townspeople of the village. The
townspeople would share this news with the minstrels who would then share this
news with the townspeople in the next village in which they performed.
Each country in medieval Europe had their own type of minstrel. Each,
while similar in their general role of entertainer, they were different in many
ways. Troubadour's, French minstrels, flourished in from the 11th century
through the 13th century. Troubadours were found in the southern part of France.
The troubadours were among the first minstrels to use their native tongue
rather than Latin. The Latin language was considered the literary language of
the middle ages. There were approximately 400 troubadours who were known to
have lived. The majority of them were nobles and some were even kings
Read entire document